This was originally a post on Instagram, and it spoke to a lot of people who either work with their hands, or are thinking of making a business out of their craft. It sounds daunting, making your own business, right? When you love what you do, it’s very organic, but, yes, there are a lot of bumps on the way.
The question I had gotten the most was how do I get my products to remain consistent even though they’re handmade?
It got me thinking. Practice. Lots of hard work, lots of mistakes (ask my kids and friends how many failed journals they’ve gotten from me, because I hate wastage), lots of tweaking. A lot of investment in the right tools. But the truth is, handmade is handmade, and the beauty lies in each piece being different. As a society, we are so used to haggling with mochis and darzis, and looking at mass-produced, machine-made perfection, that it takes a special person to appreciate handmade items. Most will not. They will not get the value proposition of a handmade product. They are used to buying cheap, they want the mass produced stuff. Nothing wrong with that, but that’s not your clientele.
What you can do is make sure you have a rock solid product that adds value to a person’s life. Focus on the design and the utility of what you’re offering. Those who get it, they’ll get it. And those who don’t, no problem. They’re not meant for you. You keep doing an honest day’s work, be authentic, and know that there is real value in working with your hands. You put a lot of yourself into making each item. You are not a Big Mac, you are hand-rolled sushi. You are not a machine, so aspire to change mindsets, not become a robot.
In a world of mass-production and fast everything, the world needs more of you.