Black Friday, Small Business Saturday, Cyber Monday. We have to face that Thanksgiving kicks off a commercial craze that is hard to ignore.
While I am spending time in gratitude for my family, others are lining up at mega-stores to get the latest gadget at a discount price. What I personally donâ€™t get is why someone would stand in line for hours for something that is mass-produced. Itâ€™s not like the stores wonâ€™t restock before Christmas.
As I immerse myself further in the handmade and artistic market, I see the blood sweat and tears that go into creating unique pieces, one-of-a-kind works of art that will not repeat themselves in the exact same form again.Â So hereâ€™s my roundup of those artisans, whom I support, whose art I own or have wishlisted to own.
- PerficalSense StudioÂ will host an Artful Giving Holiday Sale with pieces from the Salon Show and additional local art works during a Wine & Cheese Opening Friday, November 30,Â 6 to 9 pm, or Saturday, December 1, 10 to 6 pm, Sunday, December, 2, 10 to 5 pm
- That show will include items from fiber artist Danny Mansmith
- Alexis Oritz offers ceramic pieces
- Vitruvian Fine Art Studio isÂ offering Gift Boxes for the holidays, including a Gift Certificate for any drawing or painting class at the studio, and select drawing or painting materials for the class â€“ all bundled-up in a festive holiday package!
If you’re looking forÂ jewelry (other than mine, of course):
- Rebecca Zemans offers lovely sculptural pieces
- Suze Weinberg hand-beads necklaces with unique finds
- The Pieced Together Artist offers bits and baubles to create your own jewelry with
- Iâ€™ve got a bridal bouquet trousseau Iâ€™m hoping to send Princess Lasertronâ€™s way someday (even if I pull a Sue Sylvester and marry myself!) but she also offers brooches and pins and other cute felted items
For a bigger budget and those looking to adorn walls, I recommend one-of-a-kind art by the following:
- Lauren Levato and Rory CoyneÂ deserve to be in public and private galleries worldwide.
- Bridgette Guerzon MillsÂ has so much texture, depth and meaning in her encaustic work
- Collage artist Crystal Neubauer offers pieces for sale throughout the year.
- If youâ€™re looking for encaustic works, FUSEDChicagoâ€™s member list ranges from the abstract to the figurative, and has something that should suit your taste
- Doug Boehm takes gorgeous snapshots of Chicago and Chicago events.
Got a sweet tooth?
- Chicago Chocolate Tours offers a perfect sampling of fine chocolates while touring Chicago neighborhoods. One of my favorite things to do with out-of-towners.
- The Sugar Path bakes wonderful cupcakes and pies I have sampled at various WIN events. Theyâ€™ll open a storefront in Geneva, IL soon.
Not everyone makes things, of course, and I also give props to these solopreneurs and entrepreneurs whose services are tailored and customized for you, and whose storefronts consist of hand-picked items intended to make your life easier.
- Also in Geneva, Peaceful Parlour has handpicked environmentally friendly and unique products for your household
- Ten Thousand Villages offers fair trade creations by artisans inÂ Asia, Africa, Latin America and the Middle East
- Hello-Holiday has me revising my clothing budget to incorporate their joyful inventory of vintage and retro style dresses, tops, jeans, shoes and accessories into my wardrobe
- ThriveYourTribe helps small businesses create an online brand presenceÂ with design and copywriting services
What local shops and solopreneur ventures do you recommend? Let’s support local, hand-made, and small ventures, shall we?