I have a treasured friend who briefly had a shop on Etsy.com selling handmade journals. Her shop’s name was ‘Avalon Shipping Company’ and it seems to be gone now. But for a while she was obsessed with making high quality leather-bound journals in an old Italian style (even watching videos in Italian that she cannot understand to pick up more pointers). I watched her re-do intricate pieces to get it right. She signed her stuff ‘lovingly crafted’ and that was the truth.
Recently I downloaded the Etsy app for my iPad and was browsing it one day and discovered a lot of really neat stuff. In particular was a scarf from the Singing Dolphin. I admit that I am a sucker for scarves, though I rarely wear one. Reason is I cannot find many that I actually like. It is like someone who lives in the Pacific Northwest (which I do) who visits Arkansas (I do) and who loves coffee but cannot find any decent cups of coffee anywhere (I can’t).
So I found this scarf and I ordered it. I was pleasantly surprised when, the next day, I got an email alert telling me that my ordered scarf was shipped along with a note from the seller saying thanks. Aside from the auto-thanks on receipts, and the habit-formed ‘thanks for shopping’ from retailers, when was the last time someone actually said thanks?
When the package arrived, inside the box was a little note of thanks. Again with the coolness!
And when I looked underneath the box was the wrapped scarf. I mean it is a scarf… you could just put it in the box and be done with it, right? The seller wrapped that up and decorated the wrapping paper with nice string and some dolphin stickers.
And for a close up of the scarf, which is quite long (as long as I am tall, plenty of length to wrap it the proper way) and a look at the nice-ness of it.
Thursday I drove up to Portland and ran some errands, did some meetings, and visited some cafes, tea houses and bookstores. I was thankful for the scarf as the temperature dropped to cold (for us in the Willamette Valley) and the wind was biting. I had plenty of scarf to warm my neck, and plenty left over to line the zipper line of my jacket. My favorite scarf.
I like that Etsy.com is out there, that there are people who make such nice things are I can easily browse the things on my iPad while watching Doctor Who. I like that I am supporting, however small this is, someone’s work, art, time, and effort. I hope to buy more gifts for my friends and family from sources like Etsy.com in the future. And if you want to see more groovy scarves, go check out the Singing Dolphin.