Why Is Handmade Better?
We all believe, or have had someone tell us, that handmade is better the manufactured. But why is that? Is handmade really better or is it an illusion or a myth?
What is “Handmade?”
For the purpose of this article, I’m defining handmade as something that is NOT made in a factory setting. Handmade is an item in
which the artisan has a piece of themselves invested.
Regardless of the method used to create the item, handmade is something which was created at the hand of the person who had the original idea.
So Is Handmade “Better?”
Now we have to define better. Perhaps the first quandary is better than what? First, let’s look at it from a quality standpoint. We certainly all want the best quality we can get for the amount of money we want to spend. For the same amount of money, if you buy something made in a factory, you can probably bet that the hands that touched the item during creation couldn’t have cared less about the finished product or the ultimate customer value. The main concern of those folks is to get to the end of the shift so that they can punch out and go home! Certainly, factories have ‘quality control,’ but their quality standards are usually that the finished product is good enough to be packed and shipped to a retail location.
An item handmade by someone is rarely good enough. The individual creator is always their own harshest critic. They take great pride in their work, or they wouldn’t be in the handmade arena in the first place. They pay attention to the details, and it doesn’t get prepared for ultimate sale until the artisan is satisfied that the item can’t be any better. Usually at this point, the artist will have a laundry list of how they will do it next time to make future versions better still.
Another way to look at it is … when you buy a manufactured item, you’re ultimately supporting some corporate bigshot who is paying their workers as little as they can to keep them producing more and more mediocre goods. When you send your payment for a handmade item, most of the time, you’re supporting someone who as a nook in a corner of their home and is producing things for you to use/love/admire for a very long time; at least that’s their hope. People producing handmade are not generally the world’s great businesspeople. Do you know anyone who got rich over handmade? But you probably do know someone who seems to be immeasurably content who works in handmade!
Both of these words, better and handmade, are open to interpretation. But if your want something that someone actually cared about during the creation process, and you’d rather support a person rather than a company, handmade is the clear choice!
Click on any of the images above to see more about the product and artist!