Oh how I fell in love with Walmart back in college (yay Christmas lights as sole source of lighting my room! like that's never done before) then Target moved back into my life when they expanded to VA. As a design student, I went gaga over the Michael Graves collaboration with Target. It's just soooooo easy to fall in love with big box retailers with their only-est stop shopping experience.
It wasn't until I met Kori I got a sobering lesson on how big box retailers are hurting the small businesses. Y'see, Kori's folks run an independent grocery store right outside of Youngstown, OH and they are constantly competing with the cross-country chains. Then Kori started Olive Grace Studios, her own shop, and that's when it really hit home for me. These are my friends' source of income! Through once again through Kori's connection, I learned about the 3/50 project when @ home vintage general was still in operations. Sadly @ home's last day was Feb 20. Now more than ever I feel the need to support the independent spirit that truly is "the brick and mortars our nation is built on."
With my habits, it was easy to pick the 3 local businesses:
Norms Beer & Wine - excellent recommendations on the latest stouts I'm sippin'
Silva's Patisserie - mmmm miniature desserts so I can pretend I'm Gojira and tear through some macaron towers
Stalcup Hardware - Um hardware from staff who actually know their tools? Just can't get the at the HD or Lowe's anymore.
The three easily expanded to encompass the buy handmade movement. Yeah things may cost slightly buying handmade or from independent stores but truly the customer service and the knowledge is well worth the $ compared to getting information out of apathetic staffers of the big box retailers.
Pay it forward right?
For more information on the 3/50 project, please visit www.the350project.net
♦ ♦ ♦ hand pecked debb ♦ ♦ ♦ Wednesday, April 21, 2010