To Mass Produce or Not?

Hmmm… it’s not even something I am considering. Right now, anyway. But I’ve been approached by some people who asked me if I could mass produce, give them a discounted price for bulk orders (a discount for something I worked on for 20-30 hours, LOL no. And how do I do bulk orders? When do they expect me to finish, in 2 years?) so they could resell. Selling a pattern, yes I could consider that, especially for fellow crocheters who’d like to own a Creative Chaos doll (I’m not sure what to call them yet) they designed. That is, if I had a pattern. Maybe someday.

So, I’ve been having the best time of my life, falling in love over and over again with the dolls I make (I can’t help it. I’m proud of them), feeling thrilled whenever I finish a doll which looked way better than I hoped, and then I come across these people at craft fairs. My heart would start to feel heavy with disappointment and my big welcoming smile would start to fade. They’d say something like, it’s-for-export-we’re-from-a-big-company-your-dolls-are-gonna-be-a-big-hit-abroad-blahblahblah. As if I should be impressed. I’m sure they meant nothing bad. It’s just business for them after all. But for me, (and I’m sure other makers could relate) it’s way more than that.

My art dolls are significantly different from mass produced ones. There’s that huge amount of human energy and love poured into each design to take into consideration, particularly the big ones. My process of creating does not just involve coming up with a piece of work or in this case, transforming balls of yarn into a mere little doll. It also involves a huge amount of effort to conceptualize and research not just the design but the personality and story to be injected in the dolls or doll series, to transform what is in my heart and mind into something tangible. 




When I do come across such people who don’t understand why I’m doing this (Why, indeed? Mostly for the fun of it. Although sometimes I also don’t get it. Where’s the moolah?!?!?!) I try to imagine these dolls replicated in tens or even hundreds, on shelves at some department store (hmmmm, creepy) or even online with “10 available” indicated in each listing. I would guess that I’d probably won’t even be acknowledged. They’d all just be “made in the Philippines”. I imagine pictures of different girls holding dolls of the same design. Does that make me happy? On the contrary. How frustrating.

But hold on. I’m not earning much because mine is a slow craft movement and it’s never going to make me rich. Why not hire people to help make the doll bodies and I could just finish them up with the designs, I’ve been asked several times by several people. But… but… but that sucks the fun out of it all, I’d answer. Someone I know personally rolled his eyes at me when I said that one time.

Let’s face it. Fun does not put food on the table. So, when we’re penniless and my little boys are starving, feel free to approach me and offer me something I couldn’t turn down. For now, hell no.


*updated on May 20, 2016


6 thoughts on “To Mass Produce or Not?

  1. Monching Weller says:

    Nice seeing you again here on WordPress, and it was great meeting you at KWM last week! 🙂

    Well, if you ask me – seeing your designs, mas mainam na hindi ka mag-mass produce. Every doll you make is one of a kind, pinagbuhusan mo ng effort. Mas appreciated at pinapahalagahan yung mga unique na bagay, and what you make is no exception. 😉


    • Alias M. says:

      nice to meet you, too! and thank you for your words. It’s a struggle to make some people understand about handmade. Marami nga akong kilala na crafters na inaapproach rin ng resellers and they also turn those people down. And may kilala naman ako na pumayag iresell yung stuff niya but even worse, hindi man lang inacknowledge na siya yung maker. But, thank goodness for people like you who appreciate the handmade 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

    • Alias M. says:

      You were right, too. I need to update my blog. I keep directing people to wordpress tapos di naman up-to-date. tsk, tsk! But thanks, for reminding me every time we run into each other 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Carrie Lynn says:

    Oh I hear you! Brava! You took the road less traveled! I’ve been in your position many times over. I encountered these people during my wire working days. I’d spend tons of time working on a piece of jewelry then people would come up and ask if I could mass produce, and sell on discounted prices simply because its in bulk order. Ack! Bull’s eye! I then took time explaining the arduous process of how each piece is thought of, made and loved. And you know what….I always always get a blank stare. It just saddens me. In the long run, I learned how to say no without any explanation at all. Today, I make wire jewelries for myself and for those people who still appreciates them.


    • Alias M. says:

      It’s good, too, that I got into the handmade industry. I now understand the effort and love that goes into a single handmade piece. If not, I’d probably also be one of those asking for discounts! I get different reactions when I explain the value of handmade. There are those who understand after I tell them about my items and there are also those who lose interest (mostly those nga who want to resell) when I say no to mass production. Fortunately, I also encounter individuals who love handmade. Kahit papaano, the appreciation for it is increasing. Even if I don’t make a sale, their compliments make up for those who don’t understand.

      Liked by 1 person

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