Friday, February 27, 2009

My Fellow Alchemists

I thought I'd take some time today to share some of my friends Artfire shops. The Alchemists is a group of artisans that were brought together on an online forum because of a love of soap, toiletries and candles. Friendships formed and I am very happy to say I am one of them :)

Faerie Made is an awesome shop with many handmade soap options. She focuses on essential oil blends and all of her soaps are vegetarian. Her Arnica Muscle Rub gets well deserved rave reviews. Check out her shop here: Faerie Made

Moon Garden is owned and operated by a wonderful woman. While her soaps are so beautiful(I love that they're round!), the important thing is the ingredients she chooses. Her love of all things furry shines through by choosing to use animal-friendly ingredients. Her soap smells wonderful and lathers like crazy! Check out her shop here: Moon Garden

The Herb Way is a great shop that's located in Tennessee. Her toiletry/soap ingredients are chosen with care, keeping the environment in mind. Make sure to check out her beautiful handmade raw silk and Egyptian terry facial cloths here: The Herb Way

I adore a long soak in the tub every day. Magic Hands Workshop has everything needed for a luxurious bath. The sassy lady who the magic behind Magic Hands is kind, intelligent and quite humorous. I think her coconut milk bath bombs sound amazing; take a peek here: Magic Hands Workshop

These are a few of the incredible shops that make up The Alchemists. Check out all the other shops by searching "Alchemists" on Artfire :)

Wednesday, February 25, 2009


I found this Etsy shop a few months ago and fell in love with it! Her artwork is so beautifully detailed. The animals are adorable, their faces just make me melt.
8 Reasons You Should Buy Handmade Products over Commercial Products
1. Handmade products are unique. Do you really want the same scarf, mug, earrings, necklace or other item that 20,000 other people have? Of course not! Handmade items are always unique, even if they are the same type of product because they are not made by machines they are crafted by human beings so each piece will have its’ own unique characteristics.
2. Handmade items have personality. Life is not about being blah. Life is about expressing yourself and to do that your things need to have as much personality as you do. If you are happy with buying mass produced items that have no personality off a shelf at Wal Mart think about what that says about you. Don’t you want to express some personality?
3. Handmade items are special. When you get a gift don’t you feel a little bit more loved when someone gives you a handmade gift? Everyone loves getting handmade gifts or wearing something that was made just for them.
4. Handmade items last longer. Because they are made from high quality materials and handcrafted by trained artists items that are handmade last longer than low quality imported mass produced items.
5. Handmade goods are high quality. If you are a person who values the quality of an item more than the price then you already know that handmade items are far superior to mass produced items. While a mass produced item may be cheaper initially is it really cheaper when the item needs to be replaced a month later? When quality matters, go handmade!
6. Handmade items are not made by children in sweatshops in Third World countries making 10 cents a day. Experienced and trained craftspeople make each handmade item. So while you might pay a few dollars more for a handmade item it’s because you are paying for quality, experience, talent, and craftsmanship. Isn’t that worth paying for?
7. When you buy handmade you are supporting traditional arts and crafts techniques that have passed down through generations. In today’s high tech world the old arts and crafts traditions are being replaced by mass production but when you buy handmade you are saying that you prefer your items to be high quality pieces of art instead of mass produced trinkets.
8. When you buy handmade you are supporting local and small businesses. By paying artists and craftspeople for their goods you are supporting them and all the businesses that they do business with. If you are a person who believes in supporting your community economically then buying from local artists is a great way to support your community and make sure that your money goes to support local businesses.
Keep these things in mind the next time you see a scarf, a bracelet, some great handmade soap or other item and think,” I could get that for half price at Wal Mart.”!