One of my new favorite obsessions is browsing the seemingly endless creative and handcrafted objects on etsy.com. This website offers mostly handmade objects from soaps, clothing, and art to $500 goat head puppets (what else could one possibly need in life?), as well as anything else a person could conceivably dream up.
The site is meticulously organized and ever-changing, as anyone with an account can sell their handmade (and sometimes vintage) items on etsy -- kind of like a DIY EBay, but more adorable. This site is proof of the proliferation of the DIY movement and is an important contribution to today's marketplace. At a time of increasing consciousness of the ethics of fair trade, this innovative website can find itself right at home. Many of the items offered are fair-trade made, vegan, and/or organic, etc. The site is also a great opportunity for even the smallest entrepreneurs and artists to make their products available to a world-wide audience.
Browsing and buying from the site also offers a great alternative to the run-of-the-mill holiday shopping to which everyone has grown so accustomed. Etsy offers items for men, women, children, and pets of any age and truly has something for everyone. I will be ordering many a gift there myself this holiday season (including handmade Guinness soap from Appleton, WI!). Whether you want to buy from local artist, acquire one-of-a-kind items, or just have a curiosity for the unusual, I highly encourage a trip to the etsy website. Be careful -- it might be difficult to steer away!