I was reading my sister's blog which really made me want to add a few of my own thoughts on the subject of hand-made gifts and the apparent lack of appreciation they inspire.
My sister and I are both knitters, in other words when we make a gift it consists of hours and hours of thoughtful work. In most cases the knitted gifts are not special requests by the recipient so maybe its not fair to expect them to actually like their gift. But in our modern age of computers and digital cameras it sure would be a treat to see the person in their knitted gift - even if thats the one and only time the person wears it. When I knit for someone I take a lot of time choosing a colour I think would suit them and I spend a lot of time actually thinking about the person while I'm knitting. Also, I always use very nice (expensive) yarn because I think life is too short for cheap yarn and I wouldn't want to spend hours working with it.
I think that because we seem to live in a disposable society that people are not intentionally inconsiderate, only ignorant to the value of hand made items. This is one of the reasons I love etsy.com where hand-made is the mantra. I've started buying some of my clothing from etsy vendors and love that the items are specially made for me.
As for those who have not been able to see the value in my knitting, I've noticed a big wall of "gift cards" at my local grocery store.
Here are a few of the items I've made that have gone into the abyss: