The Best Places to Buy Unique Local Crafts Online
By Editorial Staff
by Catalogs.com Info Guru Rosemary O’Brien
These days the internet makes everything local (well, in a way). You can search for local crafts online from all over the world and mailing services, whether it be the US Postal Service (USPS) or the United Postal Service (UPS), brings the product to your door. Below is a mix of virtual and brick-and-mortar locations to help you find the best local crafts online.
10. Adirondack Museum StoreSome of the best places to buy local crafts online are at local stores like Oriental Trading, especially regional museum stores. The Adirondack Museum Store’s hand-crafted extra large pitcher is the perfect example of a homespun item that gives the recipient a feeling of the area. It is useful as water or iced tea pitcher or as an addition to anyone’s mountain home decor.
9. EtsyEtsy is an online store filled with amazing craftspeople hawking handmade items. They have everything from knitting scarves and hats to wooden furniture and lighting. The best part is that you don’t have to rely on an online photo alone. Just plug in your zip code and you will be taken to a local map filled with craft events and local artist locations. So, not only can you meet the seller in person, but you can touch and choose your favorite items.
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8. ArtfireArtfire is one of those upscale places to buy local crafts online. Some of their prices are a bit more expensive than the other online sites, but you can find anything. Their participants not only sell complete items such as prints and jewelry, but they also sell the tools to make the crafts in Artfire Markets.
7. Free Craft FairsFree craft fairs support sellers of handmade crafts by featuring various sellers on their landing page. They create a simple question and answer article that lets you know where the crafts-person came from, how they started, and what they are doing now. It is an interesting peek into the mind of an artist.
6. Handmade ArtistsHandmade Artists not only provides a selling platform for their artisans and artists, but they also provide a forum with which artists and craftspeople can learn about selling, and talk about their art.
5. SupermarketSupermarket began in Brooklyn, NY in 2007. When you learn more about Supermarket, you find out they have always been a designers’ marketplace. There are now 100 member designers who connect their artisans with ‘discerning customers and fans,’ but it is still one of the premier places to buy local crafts online.
4. SpoonflowerSpoonflower caters to a very specific crowd of crafters who use fabric or paper for their crafts. Designers and non-designers have a platform where they can upload their designs and fabrics are created by Spoonflower for personal use or to sell to others. It borrows from the self-publishing ideas of the book world and translates it to the fabric.
3. Shop HandmadeThe Shop Homemade site is free to set up for crafters and artisans who want to sell their wares, but it has such a variety, it would be a shame to miss. They have items such as holiday-themes pottery and jewelry to handmade spa products and aromatherapy. They take donations to keep it free, but no donation is required to purchase.
2. FolksyI know the internet is a worldwide enterprise, but we often browse in our own backyard. If you want to look for places to buy local crafts online that are outside the U.S., try sites such as Folksy. They offer a variety of items those of us searching for something different might not necessarily come up with on our own. I need to ask, who doesn’t want handmade cocktail hats and fascinators for that big party?
1. JoAnn StoresAnd last, but not least, stores such as JoAnn’s Fabrics or AC Moore are great brick-and-mortar locations to find places to buy local crafts online. These stores often have the choice of products to make it yourself, offer classes to show you how, or have instructors make a craft for you (for a fee). Having your craft made for you is a perfect situation for those who do not want to scour stores or the internet or know exactly what they want to be made.
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You can’t go wrong with such an amazing variety of products from creative artisans. Try some of the online versions and do a search within the site for a local version. You’re sure to find a local crafter or artisan selling an amazing piece you will not find anywhere else besides their vivid imagination.
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