As it becomes more and more apparent, people are looking for alternatives to buying these types of things in the stores. Most of the ones available in retail are made in China, and sadly fewer people everyday are willing to purchase these due to various recalls etc. I am not going to get into this particular discussion today.
I will say though, that the grass-roots movement into buying Canadian made, or at least North American made items is now really catching on. This is good news for us all. Craft fairs and shows are becoming more popular, and more people are starting to think about what can they make themselves and for gifts for the holiday season.
You would be amazed at what the creative mind can come up with, when given free range and inspiration. I have been able to find wonderful treasures at Etsy, such as hand-stitched journals in the Medival style, essential oils, jewelry, soaps, lip balms, gift bags, and that is just a few. I myself have been inspired by all the talent I am seeing every day. I am sculpting with clay, playing with paper, and even considering taking up sewing again. I have not done that since I was a teenager LOL.
In fact, I have been having lots of fun these last few weeks learning how to make unique mini note cards, greeting cards and gift tags. I use various media in creating them, up to and including paper, ribbons, glitters, acryllic cabs and paints. Here is a few of my most recent listings at Etsy.