Markets are a great social occasion and were really important to me when I first started sewing because I needed a community of real life people after a year of pregnancy and baby and no sleep. But the unspoken issue with markets is the great cost of attending. I don't sew for profit, but neither do I want to sell at a loss. The costs associated with Markets mean that you might as well be giving your creations away. That is, unless you are sewing for profit with that 100% mark-up thrown in. If you are running a business, then markets are pretty great.
I still love markets and shop at them, but I know businesses feel that hobbyists make for an uneven playing field, being able to sell their items more cheaply without incorporating labour costs. Let's for a moment put aside business needs (to make a profit) and appreciate everyones innate need to create, develop and grow. And this is what Etsy is great for. You can make one thing a month and have an Etsy store, or you can be in business and sell 100 items a week.
Recently, I have become much braver on Etsy, and have started to make 'retail equivalent purchases' buying items from true artisans that aren't cheap but have integrity. They have soul and substance and I feel so lucky to possess them when they arrive.
The weather is cooling here in Melbourne and so I have been turning to Etsy for hand knits in preparation for winter. Beautiful jumpers from Poland, a cardigan from Italy and socks from Finland. How great it is to be able to buy these bespoke pieces without jumping on an airplane!