Irwin Weiner ASID - If it's made by hand, it's going to be better. Probably more tender loving care into the object, more eco-friendliness, and carloads of personality. I've often commented that if there's a cure for contemporary mass-produced and machine-made home goods, it's buying handmade items to warm-up a space. I'm attracted to bulky-knit rugs, hand-screened prints in WPA colors and retro sensibilities, sculpture of any kind, and imaginative metal work. Of the latter, I love working with a local blacksmith and metal master Ray Matthis of Tutto Metal Design - see photo above. If you're a designer or homeowner, working with someone like Ray will guarantee that you have a unique handmade item in your home or client project. Other handmade sources of inspiration: Etsy shops, of course; Pittsburgh's Handmade Arcade (check out the Handmade Arcade for the Holidays this Saturday, November 12 from 11am to 7pm by going onto the Handmade Arcade website - and check out the video below for a look at a past arcade event); and the Modern Victorian/Steampunk home renovation work and furniture design of Bruce Rosenbaum (see photo below) and ModVic.