Monday, January 19, 2009

New Blog!

The blog is moving! Follow my adventures in knitting, dyeing, and soon farming at the new Turtle Cove Farm Blog. Set your bookmarks - I want to see you there :)

Monday, January 12, 2009

CPSIA Updates

The word is getting out! Save Small Business From the CPSIA is number three on the page. Voting closes at 5:00 pm EST, Thursday, January 15, 2009. If you haven't registered and voted yet, do so now! (You could vote to stop NAIS while you're there, but that's a whole 'nother can of worms!)

The CPSC has voted tentatively to exempt children's items made of natural materials such as wool, silk, cotton, and wood. This is a big step forward for us, but not far enough. I'd get pretty tired of beige toys pretty quick!

The CPSC also released a memo exempting thrift stores and resellers from lead testing, although the memo states that if the thrift stores know that items contain lead they could be held accountable. I'm not sure if this means I still get to take the monsters to Goodwill every weekend or not.

The most important thing to remember is this is going into law. Any changes the CPSC votes today will not go into effect until after February 10, 2009. Keep talking to your legislators about saving small business from CPSIA, and keep buying handmade toys for your children while you still can.

More links:

WAHM Solutions
Save Handmade
Handmade Toy Alliance

If we're loud enough, the changes will be made!

Tuesday, January 6, 2009

Save Handmade Toys From CPSIA

If you only read one blog post from the House at Two Palms, let this one be it. Something is about to happen, my friends, that will adversely affect crafters, parents, grandparents, and anyone who loves the idea of handcrafted toys for children.

Reeling from the backlash of lead tainted imported toys and thousands of recalls, our legislators passed H.R. 4040, the CPSIA. The Consumer Product Safety Act was written to protect children from lead- and phthalate- tainted toys; however, as written, CPSIA will ruin any small business that makes handcrafted toys for children.

No one seriously believes that a hand knit teddy bear is tainted with lead or phthalates. Yet, after February 10, 2009, sellers of these beautiful toys will have to pay hundreds of dollars to have each toy tested by independent laboratories. That’s hundreds of dollars for each toy. Would you be willing to spend $300.00 for that hand knit teddy bear for little Suzie?

If the CPSIA is not changed, thousands of crafters will be out of business. Those crafters will have no money to spend at their local stores. Even if you do not make or buy handmade toys, the loss of that business revenue will affect you. In this crippled economy, we cannot afford to lose any more small businesses.

So what can we do? H.R. 4040 has already been passed into law. It is too late to stop it. However, if we raise our voices loud enough, we can get it amended to exclude handcrafted toys. is the website for the Obama Transition Team. They want to hear what issues are important to you. Go to the login page and register with; find “Save Handmade Toys From CPSIA” in the ideas section and vote for it. The top ten ideas will be presented to the president after the inauguration.

But don’t stop there! Contact your Representatives, Senators, and the Leaders of the House and Senate and demand that the CPSIA be amended to save handmade toys. Call, write, and email them, daily if necessary.

We all want to protect children, but this is not the way to do it. I myself have often turned to handcrafted toys as an alternative to the risks of imported toys. If the CPSIA goes into effect as it is now, we will no longer have that option. Together we can change it! Together we can save handmade toys from the CPSIA.

For more information, I have compiled links to a few web articles:

HR 4040 (full language of the bill)
An overview from Speaker Nancy Pelosi
A great article from Business is Personal
Etsy’s open letter to the CPSC