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Handmade vs. handcrafted


#1

I recently received an email sales notification from a local shop
selling Native American books, music, crafts and jewelry. It’s a
tastefully decorated shop with lovely articles for sale. The email
included this statement:

“…let us show you the difference between handmade and
handcraftjewelry. A handmade piece of jewelry is made from raw
materials and puttogether by hand. Handcrafted jewelry simply
means that the jewelry wascreated from prefabricated parts, such
as settings, and then put together by a Native artisan.”

Since I often see both “handmade"and"handcrafted” used by Orchidians
in descriptions of their work, I thought I’d ask what folks think
about these definitions.

Linda in central FL


#2

Their definition of handmade meets the requirements of the FTC
regulations in the USA.

John


#3
"...let us show you the difference between handmade and
handcraftjewelry. A handmade piece of jewelry is made from raw
materials and puttogether by hand. Handcrafted jewelry simply means
that the jewelry wascreated from prefabricated parts, such as
settings, and then put together by a Native artisan." 

The way I read the Jewelry Guides there is no difference. If you
append the word hand to a description of the process of fabricating
jewelry the FTC says it must be made from raw materials.

23.3 Misuse of the terms “hand-made,” “hand-polished,” etc.

(a) It is unfair or deceptive to represent, directly or by
implication, that any industry product is hand-made or hand-wrought
unless the entire shaping and forming of such product from raw
materials and its finishing and decoration were accomplished by hand
labor and manually-controlled methods which permit the maker to
control and vary the construction, shape, design, and finish of each
part of each individual product.

Note to paragraph (a): As used herein, “raw materials” include bulk
sheet, strip, wire, and similar items that have not been cut,
shaped, or formed into jewelry parts, semi-finished parts, or
blanks.

(b) It is unfair or deceptive to represent, directly or by
implication, that any industry product is hand-forged,
hand-engraved, hand-finished, or hand-polished, or has been
otherwise hand-processed, unless the operation described was
accomplished by hand labor and manually-controlled methods which
permit the maker to control and vary the type, amount, and effect of
such operation on each part of each individual product.

James Binnion
James Binnion Metal Arts


#4

Maybe this is oversimplification, but to my understanding it doesn’t
especially matter what we in Orchid-land think about use of the
terms “handmade"and"handcrafted”; if we live in the U. S. and/or do
business in the U. S., we are subject to existing FTC regulations
regarding “unfair or deceptive” use of those terms. Those
regulations are pretty specific, and are easily referenced.

That said, I have read somewhere (forgive me for not citing sources)
that when FTC regulations are periodically revised, the industry is
consulted for its input. I have no idea to what extent that is true
or how much any input is heeded.


#5

A real or a marketing distinction? The words are handcrafted is a
synonym in Webster’s dictionary for handmade, but not vice versa. I
think handmade has a more personal connotation. Good discussion
topic!

Sincerely
Andrea Krause


#6

Going back to the original statement, they are quite correct to try
to make a distinction between things made from raw materials from
scratch and those assembled from pre-manufactured parts. There is a
real difference about the who, what, where and how a piece came to be
made. If those factors are part of the value of a piece, the
authenticity of “handmade Indian jewelry” is a real issue.

But the problem with the statement is the choice of words. The
writer is assigning narrow definitions and distinctions to
"handcrafted" and “handmade” that are arbitrary and not generally
recognized. It is news to me if the words are not interchangeable.
The FTC definitions (for what they are worth)also treat both terms
the same. I think the writer has a very valid point, but it becomes a
false statement because of a poor choice of words.

Stephen Walker