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Celebrating Black History Month

Jan 29, 2019

by Dayna Isom Johnson

Etsy.com handmade and vintage goods

Header Image: linguaNigra / Photo credit: Christine Gant  

February 1st marks the first day of Black History Month in the US. It’s a time for reflection and celebration for the many contributions from African Americans. I’m grateful that my role at Etsy allows me to share with you some of the talented Black artisans who are a part of the global Etsy community.

Discover artwork, fashion, home goods, and beauty products that focus on this rich heritage and shine a light on emerging talent from around the world.   

A Nod to the Best of Black Culture

Throughout generations, African American culture has offered some of the most groundbreaking and notable art. Etsy sellers also offer items that show pride in their upbringing and history. Here’s a look into some of my favorites:

Black History Shirt, Yearbook Randall Art Print, Woman With Pink Glasses, Black Girl Magic  

Support Local Emerging Talent  

Creative entrepreneurs come to Etsy to start their businesses not only for the low-barrier to entry, but also for the supportive community of fellow makers that help guide, inspire, and cheer them on during their journey. We asked a few sellers to share what inspires them and their personal stories.

Want to support talented Black makers? Here are just a few items across categories to pique your interest.  

Natural Beauty  

Did you know that Etsy has a host of makers who create products dedicated to natural hair and beauty?

Lavender Hot Oil Treatment, Hair + Body Soufflé Lavender Vanilla Chai, Honey and Flaxseed Curling Gel, Neon Scrunchies Set

I am inspired by my desire to create change. The same way I am committed to formulating clean skincare, I am also committed to using the same to formulate opportunities for girls and woman across the globe. The idea that I can sell a product that I love, make money that will help me build the life I love, support my family and also assist my philanthropic efforts is simply amazing to me. I’m also obsessed with the fact that I can take the beautiful high-quality ingredients that come from the earth and mix them in hundreds of variations to make whatever my heart desires. My happy place is truly in my lab, making.Zandra Beauty  

Home

From hand-thrown pottery to hand-drawn illustrations, these sellers have something for everyone to add some handmade love to your home.

Printable Art, Hat Man, Terracotta Planter, African Print Blanket

I really wanted to find a way to use African prints in new and interesting ways. My family are originally from Ghana, West Africa and Jamaica in the Caribbean. It’s such a vibrant culture and though I live in the western world, I wanted to find a way to integrate the different parts of who I am through Bespoke Binny and share it with others. Also, I believe self expression is important absolutely everywhere, both when we are at home and when we are outside. – Bespoke Binny

Fashion

When shoppers visit Etsy they are buying from a real person. That means they have the opportunity to have items personalized or custom made. Just ask!

Patricia Jacket, Dainty Chain Bracelet, African Necktie, The Camilla Earring, Tan Leather Card Holder

My biggest inspiration is the process of being able to create something special using my hands, hand tools and utilising traditional techniques – it’s an amazing feeling. I design and craft products that appeal to me, that are functional and that I would use myself. I LOVE the freedom of ‘being my own boss’ and this really motivates me too. – Kingsley Leather

For more shopping suggestions, check out this Editor’s Pick Page.