There is just something about knowing the name of the guy or girl who made your chair, table, credenza, art piece, or wood Star Wars ride-in-rocking-xwing-fighter… with removable R2D2 (of course).
It’s great talking to an actual person you know when there is a problem, or knowing where the things you buy come from. Granted, it is fantastic to be able to know what creators are doing on the other side of the world via the interwebs. Our ability to gain vast amounts of information with a few key strokes is astounding. What are modern furniture makers in New Zealand up to? Check.
But access to products from the other side of the world shouldn’t mean we throw out common sense.
Global is great, but not for everything.
Dealing with your “neighbors” makes you be accountable and take pride in your work. This is especially true when you might see your clients at the grocery store or grabbing a beer down the street. Community is experienced, not read in some marketing brochure.
Sure it is more expensive at first, but not when you figure you will have to replace that $80 Ikea chair ten times over the next ten years. The chair made by the person in your town (or the next one over) will still be going strong. Do you think someday your grandchildren will be cherishing a family heirloom that was mass produced in a factory somewhere for Wal-Mart?
The cost of our disposable minded society is much greater than the price tag on the products.
Let’s enjoy our cites and neighborhoods for all they have to offer. Hold off on clicking buy on amazon long enough to take a walk or bike ride around town to investigate. Try adding your town at the end of your Google search. Who knows, your neighbor might be making a better version of what you want in his garage.