Look. You hear "Indie" everywhere now. Its officially a buzzword. But if you're one of thousands knowingly nodding and pretending you know what it means because you're afraid of being shunned for your lack of hipness, never fear!! It's our little secret. Read this and you'll be flinging it around at cocktail parties like a frisbee!!
It's derived from the word "independent" and refers primarily to artistic creations. "indie" records might be made without a record label, saving more of the transaction to really be between artist and consumer, and possibly better for both. Magically, maybe cheaper for the consumer AND more profitable for the artist. Lots to be said for axing the middleman, eh?
Etsy.com is the home of Indie arts and crafts. You are all Indie. I'm Indie. We're Indie-ans!
No, we're not Indie-Americans!!! :) But we all benefit from the proliferation of independent art revolution. It helps us stay unique and put our own stamp (tee hee) on the world. Love that.
I recently went on a studio tour where I got to meet some local artists and craftspeople in their own workspaces. Much to my surprise, one of them was Jody, my old pet sitter and owner of The Furry Godmothers!! She is the sweetest woman you will ever meet and she has started One Eared Cat, which produces the funnest Indie crafts, like this INSANELY CUTE messenger bag I bought. You need to click over and check out her kid's clothes if you think this is cute!! All of her designs are hand stitched and so whimsical and cute.
Speaking of whimsical Indie-ness, I just ordered a family of Owlie ornaments from Nikki at WhiMSy Love. She even made me a custom blue one!!! ACK - he's so cute!!!!!!!
Her work is so freaking fun. She will make you smile, I promise.
Then, there's Leslie Bonnell - owner of the Stitch Lab and Glitzkreig, as well as an accomplished jazz singer and costume designer. She is, the absolute queen of craft in Austin, and a very giving, intelligent lady. She understands color and style with her DNA.
Check out these insanely sassy cuff bracelets I got from her!!! I actually sent her to Nikki's website when I saw them, because both these girls LOVE vintage buttons.
I was thinking about these ladies on the way to work today, after hearing about the billionth layoff in Austin and walking past the empty offices of the people who just moved out of our building this week and I wanted to ask you all a question.
Do you know how much good the $300 you were going to spend on an Ipod or a video game system or some other big box product would mean if you spent it directly with a person who made something with their own hands to try to improve their lives and yours?
I think it would do so much more than you think it would.
So here's MY Christmas wish.
Please spend your Christmas money buying Indie. Support people near you or in cyberspace who make something, or do something that they love. Something unique and valuable. Something that maybe pays their bills. Something that you can only get from them - whether that's a meal at a local restaurant, or arts, crafts or handmade furniture. It will matter more this year than maybe any year in your lifetime.
To you and to them.
Just think about it. And ponder the absolute truth in the statement from Nikki that really reveals the soul of independent art:
"Manly owlie hineys are hot."
There ya go. Love ya.