Wednesday, December 10, 2008


Please, everyone, spread the word... talk to your congressman or woman and help save us small handmade artisans !!

Why the plea for help? Apparently, back in August 2008 a new law was signed on to the books -- the Consumers Product Safety Improvement Act (CPSIA). It mandates that EVERY single manufacturer of items for children under the age of 12 must test every component of their items at certified testing labs for levels of lead and phthalates. This means that every ribbon, every fabric, every button, every bead -- everything that goes into my items will have to be tested for lead. This will cost hundreds of dollars per test and would effectively put me, and most other small businesses catering to children completely out of business. We can't even rely on suppliers testing their materials (which, it should be THEIR responsibility ANYWAY), the onus of certification is on our head. The cost of noncompliance? Thousands of dollars in fines and possible jail time.

My choice is between completely shutting my doors or violating the law.

Please check out the following websites for more information : (this site has an option to sign a petition! Sign it PLEASE) (has good information in their Recent Posts)

If you like buying handmade and supporting local artisans, please rally to this cause. While I am the first one to admit that there are far too many chemicals in our lives today, it shouldn't be the job of small business manufacturers to test. Testing should be done in batches by the large-scale manufacturers. It's sheer stupidity that if I and three friends go to a fabric store and each buy three yards of the *same* fabric, we'd each be forced to run the same tests for lead and phthalates. If the manufacturer batch tests their fabric to conform to the new safety regulations that SHOULD BE ENOUGH. No need to shift the onus to July Seamstress or Bobby Wooden Toy Maker.

This is far-reaching regulation. It impacts everyone -- you make hair bows? Wooden toys? Felt toys? Stuffed animals? You crochet baby clothing? Make blankets? Bibs? Burp cloths? Knit baby booties? How about child's clothing? Stockings? Socks?

Do you make, or know someone who makes ANYTHING THAT COULD POSSIBLY BE USED BY A CHILD UNDER 12? They will be impacted by this.

Please help, fixing this legislation is the only way to keep reputable businesses from choosing to close down or operate outside the law.

Thank you!


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