Why Shop Small? ~ Diane's Vintage Zest!

Why Shop Small?

For both this week's and next week's posts, I am taking a bit of time to explain why I think it is important to "shop small" and why I am continuing my "25 Days of Handmade Gifts Series" as the "Shop Small Saturday Showcase!"

First of all, what does it mean to shop small?  Basically, it means that you support the little guy rather than a massive corporation.  Some of you may already be familiar with the concept, because it has been recently gaining in popularity!  You may have heard of Small Business Saturday (the Saturday after Thanksgiving) designed to promote mom-and-pop shops during the busy holiday shopping season.

Here are a few causes that are closely associated with shopping small!
  • Shopping local
  • Buying American
  • Handmade & artisanal goods vs. mass-produced
  • Small-batch vs. Factory made

By shopping small, you automatically support most, if not all, of these worthy goals.  Isn't that a great reason on its own?  Well, if you need more convincing...

Here are my Top 10 reasons for why you should shop small!

1.  Small = Unique!

When you buy from a small shop, you are less likely to end up with the same old item that everyone has.  I would rather have something that is one-of-a-kind, wouldn't you?

Awesome L.A. pillows by Kheel's!

2.  Quality Goods

When items are made by hand or small-batch, that means someone has an eye on practically every part of the process, making sure it passes the test!

The small batch pickles at Pernicious Pickling Co. are so delicious.  :)

3.  Great customer service

Small shops really want their customers to be happy!  That means if you have a concern, they are extremely happy to help, and they definitely know their products.  By the way, because of #2, I have never had a problem.  :)

I loved all of the Peppermint items from Moxxie.  Satisfied customer here!  :)

4.  Supporting your Community & the local economy

When you give your dollar to a small business, that shop owner is more likely to invest their money in local resources for their own business needs.  That means you are helping to build your community!

In fact, the U.S. Department of Commerce reports that every $1 spent on American made products fuels another $1.40 in spending elsewhere in the US economy.  Woo-hoo!

Kat from Santore Company is proud to support her local community!

5.  Friendly shop owners

Small businesses don't have nearly as much red tape between you and the shop owner.  That means that you can talk about anything to them, and I have found that they are always happy to chat.  :)

The gals from Reclamation Dept. were so friendly and told me their whole story from top to bottom!

6.  Custom work!

Because you can talk directly to shop owners (#5) who make everything from start to finish, you can get exactly what you want!  In fact, some of the favorite gifts I have given have been custom items from local, small businesses.

Kate from Small and Great does AWESOME custom work!

7.  Supporting someone's dream!

It is hard to be an entrepreneur, so why not support the little guy!  Most of the shop owners I have spoken to have a day job but their small business is their ultimate dream.  I would love to help achieve that dream, wouldn't you?

For small businesses that have been passed down from previous generations, they need continued support to stay in business.  I love seeing those signs that say how long they have been in business!

33stewartavenue talked about how the long commute to his day job inspires some of his work!

8.  Job creation

When small businesses grow, they create jobs.  Also, they tend to provide better wages and benefits than larger corporations do.  Enough said!

I talked with Tricia and her assistant about the beautiful products from Tricia Ree Ceramics!

9.  Indirectly “pay it forward”

Over 90% of small business owners support their communities through volunteering or donations.  In fact, non-profit organizations receive on average 250% more support from small businesses than from large businesseses!

Olivia from atiliay always gives back with her focus on donating to non-profit organization!

10.  Shopping small means you are buying American!

Why does buying American matter?  ABC World News reported if each American spent just $64 on American-made goods during holiday shopping, the result would be 200,000 new jobs. That's awesome!

Amy & Griselda from Peppered Up Foods use tried and true recipes for their tasty treats!

Some people have also said that shopping small is associated with a reduced environmental impact due to less transportation costs, less waste, and investment in local resources.  I mean, that's a bonus reason on top of 10 really great ones.  :)

I hope you join me in supporting all of the awesome people I have met recently and their small businesses!  See all of the great shops here, if you missed them the first time around.

Do you already focus on "shopping small" or is this new to you?



  1. Great post! I prefer to shop locally as much as possible. It's the only way to go.

  2. Thanks! I'm happy to promote shopping small and local whenever possible. :)

  3. Great post! As an Etsy seller I love hearing that people still do prefer dealing with an actual person and that we can all support one another. xx

  4. I love the points you make- especially the first one about how if you buy from smaller shops you don't have what everyone else has! I also adore buying things from local stores that you can't find anywhere else!

  5. Our city has a great association promoting shopping small and local. I have booths at a locally owned antique mall and buy my produce at the farmer's market which is limited to local farms. Thanks so much for promoting this concept.

  6. Thanks! I definitely love supporting Etsy sellers and small shop owners. Thanks for visiting and I hope you stick around for my Shop Small Saturday Showcase posts! http://vintagezest.com/2013/12/shop-small-saturday-showcase.html

  7. Thanks! I also hope that you stick around for the series to find out about some fabulous small shops! http://vintagezest.com/2013/12/shop-small-saturday-showcase.html

  8. That's so great! Thank you for doing the same with your purchases. :)

  9. These are such great tips!

    Thanks again for joining the Link Up this week!

  10. What a fun showcase! There are so many great products here! Thanks for sharing!


I love to hear your comments! And putting in your two cents is always free. :)