I have an admission to make: I think homemade is overrated. Rather, I dislike its deification.
I really like when people are creative and the clever things creative. But I don’t like the un-due exultation of such things. It seems that the default position is that homemade = superb, superior quality, etc. This makes sense. Today, things come out of plastic boxes and have stickers and labels and prices. Homemade is cool now because it’s not the norm.
Of course, it used to be the reverse. Pollyanna didn’t want a homemade doll, if you remember. She wanted one of those nice, store-bought dolls.
I acknowledge that part of the reason that I feel this way is that I am not saturated in that world. I don’t have a plethora of artisans around me (I did use to have a roommate though who could decorate, paint, and create anything out of nothing), and I don’t often sweat over “creating” things. Except for blog spots. So I acknowledge from a certain perspective I am coming from the outside.
Now, in general, I like homemade things. Homemade cookies (though I for one can’t seem to make chocolate chip cookies better than those break-and-bakes), personalized books, homemade bookmarkers, and good hand-made jewelry. Painters, seamstresses, designers can all do incredible work. So I acknowlege that there are some great hand-made crafts, and I’m for them, as long as they are of high-quality.
So that’s my disclaimer. I love art, especially good flat art, music, people who play and write songs, people who draw and create. That’s not what I’m focusing on. I’m focusing on the obsession with “homemade”.
My beef comes in when whatever product is “homemade” is assumed to be great, even superior to other products, simply because it was made by hand. I also dislike homemade when it seems like someone is using it as a ploy to save money by avoiding buying a gift.
If a product is good, then it doesn’t really matter to me whether it was made in a factory or a one-of-a-kind thing. In fact, homemade often can be more expensive for a comparable product. Homemade has its place and I don’t think that it’s a throne.