Ethics and the Handmade Artist
Ethics is doing the right thing. How does this apply to the handmade artist? Fortunately, almost all of us do the right thing automatically because we were raised by our parents and society to perform in that manner. Unfortunately, some persons do not. Therefore, the government steps in and controls, at least in some part, the way in which things must be done. In the United States, several Federal agencies have regulations that apply to handmade artists. For me, the regulations regarding jewelry apply to my art. These are primarily promulgated by the Federal Trade Commission.
Of special importance is their definition of handmade:
(a) It is unfair or deceptive to represent, directly or by implication, that any industry product is hand-made or hand-wrought unless the entire shaping and forming of such product from raw materials and its finishing and decoration were accomplished by hand labor and manually-controlled methods which permit the maker to control and vary the construction, shape, design, and finish of each part of each individual product.
Note to paragraph (a): As used herein, “raw materials” include bulk sheet, strip, wire, and similar items that have not been cut, shaped, or formed into jewelry parts, semi-finished parts, or blanks.
(b) It is unfair or deceptive to represent, directly or by implication, that any industry product is hand-forged, hand-engraved, hand-finished, or hand-polished, or has been otherwise hand-processed, unless the operation described was accomplished by hand labor and manually-controlled methods which permit the maker to control and vary the type, amount, and effect of such operation on each part of each individual product.
Everyone in the handmade industry should be aware and follow the regulations that apply to their art. This pendant meets all the parts to the above definition since the stone was hand cut from rough stone.
Following the rules and regulations and acting ethically is everyone’s personal responsibility. This forum and shops group works very hard to insure that all products offered in the shops are truly handmade. That is the very reason why I maintain my shop here and not on other venues, as I have found the owners and other artists here to be ethical.
Posted by Rasmussen Gems and Jewelry LLC
Posted in Information