Tuesday, August 25, 2015

When "DIY" can hurt your business

This thoughtful post is from my daughter, Laura Lewis Albright, Manager of Painting with Fire Studio

First I would like to say that I absolutely love do-it-yourself projects. From making my own garlic olive oil to dying lace curtains (to replace the ones that my dog destroyed during her puppy chewing phase!) But when does "do-it-yourself" become do-it-inferior?  Maybe a better question is, "When a company or individual gives you an idea or teaches you how to 'do-it-yourself,' how do you show your support of that small company or individual?" 

I will admit that there are times when I've picked up Elmer's glue from the grocery store to make my own "Modge Podge" instead of going to my local art supply store. But you know what? Most of those times I couldn't get the right consistency and I didn't feel good about not supporting a small business, like the Art Supply Store across the street from our studio. 

I know the purpose of do-it-yourself is to be more cost-effective and experience self-gratification for a job well done.  However, when does that come at the cost of quality?  For example, in our small city of Saint Petersburg, we have a specialty olive oil shop. My husband and I love to garden and are growing garlic. So, of course, we want to try making our own garlic olive oil :-)

It would be very easy for us to go out to our local super center or grocery store and buy an inexpensive brand, but we like to support the business that gave us the idea!  To show our support of Kalamazoo Olive Company, this is what we do. We buy one of their simple olive oils that has no zest or extra pizzazz.  We can take James' great olive oil and spice it up ourselves, while saving a few dollars and supporting a small business. Voila!  I feel good about supporting the individual or small business that was generous with their knowledge and ideas while still being able to do it myself.  

For our family, we see teaching and, hopefully, the inspiring of others to "D-I-Y" as our calling in life. We truly admire and appreciate our customers, friends and those who inspire us! We appreciate their support so that we can continue to do what we love to do which is to ... you got it ... teach and inspire others.  Through their support, they give us a reason for our calling.

Sometimes it may require a little extra effort, but it can be so worth it for all! 

Please share if you love do-it-yourself projects and have a calling or desire to support creative individuals and small businesses. 

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