This should be sub-titled: “Or how I learned to love shopping.”

I worked in retail for three years, which included four back to school seasons, three tax-free weekends and three winter holiday shopping nightmares debaclesseasons. I was never a big fan of holiday shopping because of the general population’s ignorance & insensitivity to other shoppers/drivers/trapped employees/innocent bystanders but retail employment makes it sooo much harder for me to go to a mall now.

Thank the Internet gods for on-line shopping! A large chunk of last year’s Christmas shopping was done on-line. Some items per picked up at locally owned boutiques and I even braved a couple of big stores (Old Navy & Books a Million come to mind) for a quick 10 minute grab & pay. This year, I’ll be shopping on-line again and I’ve been finding A TON of great items on my new favorite site, Etsy. Beyond keyword search, you can look over gift guides & shop local Etsy shops…you can even pounce on undiscovered shops! I’ve been saving items I find to give & items I want for myself (hint, hint). I’m considering taking the ‘Buy Handmade’ pledge and purchase handmade items when I can.

If you join Etsy, please find me: identitybreakdown

Above are five items I absolutely adore. The dress is wonderful for all occasions, including festivals, random road trips & lazy days. The bags–I can’t have enough purses but this travel bag, gadget pouch & clutch may convince me to donate my other bags. And the earrings…I like having unique earrings. Have you seen the ones I own that look like vases? Or the ones with a red rose & what looks like a block of cheese dangling from my ears? I really wish Etsy would create a Wish List feature. That way, I could separate items I’m purchasing for gifts (or saving for later) from items I would like to ask for as a gift. I shall send the word to Etsy about my idea. Buy Handmade, save gas & save sanity by purchasing on Etsy!

I’ve been visiting Etsy for several months and just wanted to share my love of this beautiful site. Glorious handmade items run rampant; for example, VeganDish‘s Bunny Butts Creamer & Sugar set, SweetheartSinner‘s cigarette-case-style wallets (I own the Alice in Wonderland one) and BMJNYC‘s twig ring are all in my favorites list. I’ve found toys for my kitty, unique items for my apartment and a ton of handmade costumes for Halloween or the next music festival.

Here are just a few of my favorite items:

Recycle or these animals are going to eat your pants - tote
andyeatsonlycandy’s “Recycle” Tote

Purse made of LP record cover The Doors

Rainbow Iridescent Glass Geometrix Divided Dish
If you like any of the items or are interested in anything else, please visit You do not have to sell anything; if you do join, please let Etsy know I referred you! My Etsy userID is identitybreakdown.