"Handmade Toy Alliance Urges All to Buy Handmade for the Holidays"

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The Handmade Toy Alliance (HTA) urges parents and grandparents to give handmade gifts to the children in their lives this holiday season. This year more than any other, small batch makers of toys, clothes, and accessories need their customers' support.

The Handmade Toy Alliance (HTA) urges parents and grandparents to give handmade gifts to the children in their lives this holiday season. This year more than any other, small batch makers of toys, clothes, and accessories need their customers' support.

“It's been a challenging year for all of involved in making or selling handmade children's goods,” said HTA President Cecilia Leibovitz of Craftsbury Kids (VT). “We've all been working all year to understand and adapt to the Consumer Product Safety Improvement Act (CPSIA) of 2008, which requires us to perform many of the same tests as Mattel and other large manufacturers. Now that the Holidays are here, though, we're happily focusing our energies on what really matters—delighting children with unique gifts”.

To help connect shoppers with unique gifts, the HTA has developed an easy to use listing of featured members at http://www.handmadetoyalliance.org/featured-hta-members , which includes business profiles and links to member websites. “It's an easy way to find a special gift,” said HTA board member Heather Flottmann of Liliputians NYC (NY). “We have so many wonderful little companies offering gifts that you'll never find at Wal-Mart or Target.”

“When you buy handmade, you're getting something that can't be found in a factory made product,” said Jolie Fay of Skipping Hippos (OR). “You're getting a gift made with love, not just for money. It's a tangible connection to thousands of years of human history in which toys and clothes were made by people, not machines. Children really do understand and appreciate the difference.”

As for the CPSIA, HTA members remain hopeful that common sense will prevail in Washington so that their businesses will survive. “This is a long term struggle,” said Leibovitz, “But one way or another I'm sure we will prevail. We'd just like to get back to making wonderful and delightful children's goods instead of writing letters to Congress.”

“So, on behalf of the 399 business members of the Handmade Toy Alliance, we wish everyone a very happy holiday season,” said Leibovitz.

The HTA includes retail stores, toymakers and children's product manufacturers from across the country who want to preserve consumer access to unique handmade toys, clothes and all manner of small batch children's goods in the USA. Formed in November of 2008 in response to the CPSIA, HTA members are parents, grandparents and consumers who are passionate about their businesses as well as the safety of the children in their lives. While in support of the spirit of the law, the unintended consequences of the CPSIA have motivated members of the HTA to work to enact change at a federal level. For more information, visit www.handmadetoyalliance.org.

Dan Marshall, co-owner
Peapods Natural Toys & Baby Care (St. Paul, MN)
Tel. 651-238-8398
dan@peapods.com

Jill Chuckas, Owner, Designer
Crafty Baby (Stamford, CT)
Tel. 888-788-5168
jill@craftybaby.com

Cecilia Leibovitz, President
Craftsbury Kids (Montpelier,VT)
Tel. 802-223-7143
ceci@craftsburykids.com

Rob Wilson, Vice President,
Challenge & Fun (Ashland, MA)
Tel. 888-384-6200
hta@challengeandfun.com


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