*8Things: Buy Handmade Favorites


There’s no denying it. It’s time to start thinking about holiday shopping. This year, like the last, I’ll be making my own gifts or buying handmade. Why buy handmade? I’ll let the folks from BuyHandmade.org tell ya’:

“The ascendancy of chain store culture and global manufacturing has left people all dressing, furnishing, and decorating alike. The connection between producer and consumer has been lost. Buying handmade helps them reconnect. We created the [buy handmade] pledge as a call to action for consumers to be conscious of how they spend their money this holiday season. We want people, whenever possible, to support independent creators and shop outside the big boxes.”

Giving handmade:

  • supports the artists you love
  •  allows you to give unique presents that are cherished, not forgotten
  •  is softer on the environment than mass-manufactured presents.

So this year you’ll find me cruising the on-line shops of small artisans. Here’s  my list of *8Things: Buy Handmade Favorites for you today. Who will you be shopping this holiday season?

I Took The Handmade Pledge! BuyHandmade.org

1. Naoko Stoop  (bio : shop):  I feel so…softened..by these beautiful, whimsical prints and stationary. The Red Knit Cap Girl is so sweet and uplifting. I wish I knew her when my children were little. I would have hung her up in their nursery for warm, adventurous vibes. And Naoko’s holiday cards are just perfection.  

2. Inner Gypsy Design (bio : shop): Kerianne Taves offers elegant, sleek jewelry design. These silver pendants are a long-standing classic-chic piece for any modern jewelry collection. Part of the proceeds go to benefit the Canadian Breast Cancer Society.

3. BoojiBoo (shop): The mother-daughter(s) team at BoojiBoo just keep churning out adorable vintage-inspired aprons. (That’s me wearing mine.) My mom has two in her kitchen — matching grandmother/granddaughter numbers. My 9yo daugther wears one with skulls-and-rose which she calls “girlie punk.” They’re just too much fun!

4. Bella Wish (blog : shop): Stacy de la Rosa makes beautiful, custom word-pendants accompanied by crystals, charms, or gemstones. When my dear friend was grieving a failed pregnancy, Stacy made her this beautiful pendant to help carry her through. Any woman in your life would be encouraged and supported by one of Stacy’s lovely pieces.

5. Rowena Murillo (blog : shop): I’ve sung Rowena’s praises before, because I just adore her work. It feel…prophetic…to me, as it calls out our  finest, bravest, most noble selves. I’ve given her prints as presents to my soulsisters, and they’ve always been well received. Each one comes with the inspiring text shown in the item listing. Who will you send one to this holiday season?

6. Ten Things (shop): I tweeted that I adored these earrings, and the next thing I knew my soulsister Lisa had sent them to me in the mail! They are just as gorgeous in real life as in the photo. I love them! Any sea-loving Cali-girl will want something from this artful shop.

7. Jolie Guillebeau (blog : shop):I cannot tell you how happy I am that Jolie’s acrylics are now available as affordable prints. This charming Mr. Potato Head is just waiting to bring whimsy to someones living room, and Happy Apple can prop up on your desk to get you through your day. Someone you know having a baby? Don’t let them do the baby’s room in pinks and blue. These toys are for Generation Next!

8. Harp 46 (website : shop): I’ll never forget my Seattle friends lying around our living room blissing out to the beautiful harp music played by April Vega . April, her husband Nuc, and his brother Posido are Harp 46 —  a unique trio creating layered, lovely music on harp, bass, and percussion. Their Christmas album, Angels with Us  is one of our all time favorites, and their new release Entanglement is a world-music delight. Buy something for yoruself and a friends, and discover something totally inspired.

Three of these artists will be featured in upcoming Monday guest posts. Don’t miss a one — sign up on my new Magpie Girl mailing list  and receive an lovely little reminder in your email when they arrive.

Who are your Buy Handmade Favorites? Put your suggestions in the comments below, or grab a buttonand play along. Remember, we need your permalink to your *8Things post in the list below, not your general blog address. Thanks for playing!

Grow your gratitude. Live Satisfied. Join us on Facebook for our weekly *8things roundup.

kate November 12, 2009 at 12:48 pm

I bought a picture from Rowena Murillo after seeing you mention her. I’ll pick it up when I’m next in the US. I can’t wait! I’m actually thinking of having her do a special “flying girl over Copenhagen” painting!
thanks for sharing

Leslie November 12, 2009 at 10:12 pm

Many of these are new to me! Thanks!

carol November 12, 2009 at 11:42 pm

I love the idea of this,however, I have a question and maybe some one could offer some advice. I have almost all men to shop for, husband and 3 sons ages 20,18 and 16. Sitting here right now I can’t imagine what on earth I would buy for them that they would like and/or need and/or use. Guys seem to be hard enough to buy for and I tend to just go with giftcards for them. Maybe I could do some small handmade things in their stockings…

Desiree November 13, 2009 at 12:24 am

Check out this link for some cool hand made jewelry and hair clips. They are cheap and would make great gifts for the holidays.


lisa (msla) November 13, 2009 at 4:15 am

I, like Carol, need some advice. Mom, age 67, dad age 68. I’m totally stuck for ideas this year. Any grandparent type ideas?

Rachelle November 13, 2009 at 7:55 am


Last year we made a blurb book for the grandparents. It had photos, recipes, and essays from our family trip to Italy. This year we might make a family cookbook using Blurb. I also think theatre tickets can be nice (not handmade–but still not a knick-nack at least.)

Carol — I hear you on the boy thing. One year I made the nephews sweatshirts with hotrod flames or tattoo skulls embroidered on them. They were a big hit. The following year it was knit hats in team colors. But honestly, most year the boys get video games.

carol November 13, 2009 at 2:40 pm

Ooooh, flames and skulls, good idea! Now you’ve got my creative juices flowing a bit!

I was going to make this last year but the recommended yarn had been discontinued and I didn’t feel like messing with finding a substitute. Its far too late for me to whip on up for this Christmas but maybe next year or for someone’s fall/winter birthday.

They all love hoodies so maybe I’ll decorate each of them one. They’d love flames,skulls, safety pins and grommets! :) I don’t know how to embroider but I do know there are some really cool looking iron-on patches out there….

stacy November 13, 2009 at 2:49 pm

Thanks for the shout out! I am honored to be included in such a list of amazing shops and artists! Stacy xo

rowena November 15, 2009 at 4:33 pm

Thank you Rachelle! I can’t believe I missed this post when it came out. These are wonderful shops and it’s a pleasure to be among them.

I am definitely looking to make this year’s Cristmas, and buy handmade when I can.

I really believe that Christmas is its most meaningful when we turn away from the materialism that is so rampant and focus on the love and the heart the hope. So that’s what I’m doing this year.

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