A certain massive donut retailer has been advertising “artisan” bagels. As Inego Montoya would say, I do not think that word means what they think it means.

Doug Law, green bowl box, pottery

Here is the work of a potter,  my friend Doug Law. We have a couple of Doug’s pieces in our house, and they’re just wonderful. And I’ve had the treat of touring his workshop (i.e. basement) and listening to him describe how he works with the clay, how he dries out a piece (very slowly) before firing it, what he’s learning about the chemistry of glazes and colors.

It’s creative and meticulous work.

His website, The Modern Reason, is at, and the home page shows lots of interesting pieces.




Leather tote bag by Stitch and Tickle

Here is a handmade leather tote bag by Stitch and Tickle, aka Sophie Truong.

My wife and I got to watch Sophie painstakingly create a couple of bags like this over the course of a long weekend. No machines involved, just hand tools like an exacto-type knife for cutting pieces from big leather sheets, an awl for punching the stitch holes, and a needle for hand-pulling heavy-duty waxed thread.

The result is beautiful, durable, very stylish, unique. Sophie has a store on Etsy as well as a blog full of great visuals. (And an excellent white dog named “Oops”.)

These folks are truly artisans. Part of the pleasure of their products is the effort and care that goes into them.


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