Published on June 8th, 2009 | by Julie Finn1
Mom and Pop Online: Good Independent Internet Craft Stores
Sometimes you gotta shop online. Maybe you live somewhere a little bit country, like I do, or maybe you have two little kids who would rip apart a bead store in the time it took you to pick out a single package of 3mm crimp beads, like I do, or maybe you have a favorite independent craft shop that you discovered on a vacation a couple of years ago and every now and then you have to have a fix, like I do.
Whatever your reasons, there’s no reason to necessarily shop at a big-box store’s web site; not only are there tons of sites for Fabulous Fabrics and Yearn-Worthy Yarns, there are loads of awesome craft stores, some selling supplies and some selling handmade goods, who would looooove to have your business:
- Found, in Ann Arbor, is a shop that I discovered while on a weekend trip to my daughter’s NICU reunion (long story–let’s just say that you don’t exactly WANT to go into labor six weeks early on the highway five hours from your home). I love Found because much of its handmade work, created by local artists, is made from recycled materials–pendants with monograms cut from license plates, bowls woven from filmstrips, etc. Found also has a selection of modern crafting supplies like copper foil and vintage awesomeness (think game pieces, sheet music, bits and bobbles) that you can also use for crafting.
- While studying for my qualifying exams a couple of years ago, I had this complete mental breakdown and convinced myself, for some reason, that if I could learn to solder, I could also pass my exams. Well, I failed my qualifying exams, but I did learn to solder pretty well, and the book written by the owner of Simply Swank was the main reason I did so. Simply Swank has a selection of supplies for those interested in jewelry or ornament soldering–a variety of copper foil, cut glass for those who aren’t skilled enough to do it themselves yet, embellishments and backgrounds and, of course, pink solder irons.
- Remember how you’re applying to the Renegade Craft Fair? Well, Renegade Handmade is the store associated with the fair–it carries a wide variety of the works of handmade artists from all over, most of whom are also associated with the craft fair in at least one of its locations.
- I shopped at The Curiosity Shoppe last year while in San Francisco for a wedding to which my children were not invited (What’s UP with that, by the way? Is it some sophisticated thing that those of us who were born in Arkansas aren’t meant to understand? Some “I’m young and in love, and I don’t give a damn how difficult it is to find childcare” thing? Is it related to the thing in which, if you don’t go to the wedding but do buy the wedding gift for your husband to give to the couple when HE goes to the wedding, the thank-you card is only addressed to HIM? Just asking), and LOVED it. It’s a little boutique-y little handmade gallery, and this same personality is reflected in its online presence. It offers mostly handmade items, mostly pricey, with some super-cool craft kits and even the odd Built by Wendy pattern.
What are your favorite online indie craft shops?