In the European market, vintage finds, one-offs and handmade products are being sold very well, while consumer confidence is low. What makes it that these goods are so popular? People love products with a story attached. They want to see a human touch reflected in a precious purchase. The maker of the product is at the very center of attention. And we believe the maker should be; he or she holds the skills of bringing a product to life, starting only with a lump of wood or a leather hide.
When a creator is also a maker, interesting stuff happens. Designers are hitting the workshop floors and getting their hands dirty. By experimenting with materials and techniques they create new products. Many of them, like Hella Jongerius are interested in making serial one-offs; industrial products with tiny flaws or marks that make them unique.
When it comes to global crafts, background stories are even more exotic. The makers often practice traditional crafts, unknown to the rest of the world. By co-creating with designers and sharing ideas and knowledge, more and more exporters of handicrafts are selling their goods in the global market.
In food, local production is very popular. But now there are also handmade products to be found on weekend markets and in local shops. A lot of attention is given to small maker industries in big cities. Buying your teapot, mirror or bag from a local maker is quite an experience.
Do you as a business tell all stories attached to your products? Chances are you don't, while you probably have a very interesting product source and a skilled group of makers. Why not start with gathering information and images, and start creating stories around your products? People are made for remembering stories and sharing them, but forget about facts and figures instantly. So take out that notebook, camera or recorder and start collecting!
People love products with a human touch. They want to hear the stories of its maker, and make sure these are true and trustworthy. Craftscurator calls this trend 'Tale of Truth', and it is one of 8 consumer attitudes revealed in the Craftscurator 2013 Trend Guide. Order the guide now or visit the Craftscurator Trend Event.