I found her using the Shop Local feature on Etsy. It's on the homepage, left side, right below the "pounce" feature, and I love it. When you put in your city's name, it'll pull up the one hundred most recently updated shops on your area, along with a few items from each, and you can browse your way through local makers. Buying these slippers from Casey meant that first, I supported a local crafter, and second, I saved money on the shipping, since it only went through the post offices in my city. If you felt comfortable with it, you could even arrange to meet someone locally* (provided you follow some basic safety tips), or pick something up from a craft fair, instead of ordering online. This feature lets local buyers connect with local makers. You may be surprised at what you find is going on right where you live!
This is what's going on in my hometown...
from both my home state of WI
and my hometown of Louisville!
Oh, how small the world is}
Have you found anything interesting in your area lately?
*Please note: if you ever meet someone in person that you originally met online, meet them in a very public place, with friends along, and absolutely do not go anywhere private with them. Most people in the handmade online community are cool and safe, from what I've learned, but you should always watch out for your safety.