In a world where almost everything is now mass-produced, it’s wonderful to see products that are still made by hand, in small quantities.
Whether it’s a weaved basket, hand-carved wood display, or a knitted blanket, handcrafted products remain unrivalled in terms of quality, authenticity, aesthetics, and durability—and no advances in technology or machinery can ever replicate them.
The term “handmade” doesn’t necessarily mean that a product is exclusively made by hand, without the help of any machinery or technology. Instead, it means the final result is achieved by using artisanal skills, knowledge, and quality control of the artist.
What’s So Good and Special About Handcrafted Products?
The craftsmanship that goes in every detail is one of the many things that set handcrafted products apart from the rest. Each part of a handcrafted collectable is precisely pieced together by a highly-skilled artisan in a workshop. Take this classic Singapore souvenir for example:
Besides the quality of craftsmanship, we elaborate further on the factors that make handcrafted products truly a treasure.
• You support local artisans: When you buy a handmade product, you also support local artisans, their community, and the local economy, as well. It makes you feel good about your purchases as you help create jobs, pay for their labour, operational costs, and living expenses.
In fact, one study found that shifting as little as 10% of the total consumer spendings to local businesses can create hundreds of jobs and millions of dollars in wages. It’s because small, independent businesses and their employees are more likely to spend their profit within the same community.
• You buy something exceptional: Because no two handmade items are identical, you can rest assured that when you buy one, there will be none quite like it. An artist might have made copies of the same product but you’ll not find one in the same shade, texture, shape, colour, or grain.
What’s even better with handicrafts is that you have the option to customise your purchase. Because there’s a chance that you could be dealing directly with the artisan, they might be open to accommodate your specific request or get a fully customised order done for you. The possibilities are endless.
• You get high-quality items that are designed to last: It’s not merely an air of authenticity and uniqueness that makes handmade superior to mass-produced. They’re actually also made to the highest of qualities as the artists understand the value of each piece and give their best attention to detail.
Unlike mass-produced products, handcrafted products are not made exclusively for profit. They feature excellence that’s designed to last. Because mass production offers cheaper products, it also means that you’re getting less.
• You help keep the craft alive: You already know that buying handmade supports the local artisans, which in return, is good for the local economy. But, it also helps keep the traditional craft—whether it’s wood carving, weaving, tapestry, silversmithing, or pottery—alive.
As technology is dramatically replacing skilled workers with machines, it’s crucial to keep handcrafting a profitable career choice. It may be a little altruistic reason, but buying handmade can make all the difference in helping the art and craft to be passed down to generations.
• You make a step towards becoming eco-friendly: On top of all these, buying handmade can significantly reduce your carbon footprint as these products are made with less energy than those made in the assembly lines.
It holds particularly true for locally-sourced handicrafts that aren’t shipped halfway around the world, consuming great amounts of fuel and energy. Therefore, when you buy handmade items, you not only get what you paid for but you also take a step towards preserving the environment.
Handmade is Who We Are
Handmade is a celebration of cultures, traditions and art. Each product made by hand is about the artist who pieced them together, the time, effort and skills that went into it, and the commitment to deliver a product that is truly one of a kind.
Keep the heritage alive, treasure handcrafted products by supporting Singapore heritage gifts at Arch Heritage.
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