Thursday, October 16, 2008

5 Reasons to buy Handcrafted Jewelry

Handcrafted jewelry makes a lovely Christmas present for women and teen girls. Handcrafted jewelry is also often referred to as Artisan jewelry. Artisan jewelry is some of the most beautiful handmade jewelry in the world. With skilled craftsmen working hard to make it meaningful, this jewelry is desirable by women all over the globe. It excels store-bought, mass-produced jewelry in a number of ways. Here are five reasons why Handcrafted Jewelry is a wonderful gift, followed by five things that you should know about Peruvian Artisan Jewelry in particular.

1. You get what you pay for. While most handcrafted jewelry is more expensive than store-bought jewelry, it is also typically better constructed and from better materials. Cheap jewelry requires the use of cheap materials and fast, often careless, labor.

2. Human Touch. Most people value goods which are handmade over those which are machine made or produced by nameless people. Cheap jewelry does not become a family heirloom the way handcrafted jewelry does.

3. Sweat shops. Mass-produced jewelry is typically made in factories with poor working conditions, where labor laws and safety codes are often violated. When you buy handcrafted jewelry designed and created by an independent craftsman, you can be assured that your money is not going to further fuel child labor or sweat shops.

4. Microeconomics. When you support an artisan or artisan community, you are supporting people, not large businesses. Your money doesn't go to a rich CEO or celebrity spokesmodel; it goes to the person who made the jewelry.

5. A Living Wage. If you examine a $5 department store bracelet and calculate the store's markup, the middle-man's markup, the transportation costs, the material and overhead costs, and then the worker's labor, you can assume that the person who made it received no more than a few pennies for her labor. Artisans who sell directly or through a company that promotes socially conscious consumerism, can enjoy a living wage.

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