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What's a Wreck?

A Cake Wreck is any cake that is unintentionally sad, silly, creepy, inappropriate - you name it. A Wreck is not necessarily a poorly-made cake; it's simply one I find funny, for any of a number of reasons. Anyone who has ever smeared frosting on a baked good has made a Wreck at one time or another, so I'm not here to vilify decorators: Cake Wrecks is just about finding the funny in unexpected, sugar-filled places.

Now, don't you have a photo you want to send me? ;)

- Jen
Saturday
Jan172009

It's Just a LITTLE Soap Box, I Promise

Sorry, sorry - I promise I almost never do this, but I just learned something that I think will interest/concern a lot of you Wreckies out there. If you enjoy supporting local artists and makers of hand-made goods, please keep reading.

Here's the deal:

In August the Congress passed the CPSIA, a law making it tougher to sell toys and other childrens items that contain lead - so obviously that's a good thing. However, as a result of this law any crafter or stay-at-home artisan who makes items for kids under 12-- from clothing to toys to school supplies - must have their items tested to the tune of $400-$4000 per item. Since most crafters cannot afford those kinds of fees, this means tens of thousands of stay-at-home moms and small home-based businesses may be forced out of business come February 10, the official "mandatory compliance" date set by the law.

As a small business owner and indie-art-lover I was distressed to hear of this from reader Laurel, especially considering it's an easy fix: all that's needed is a simple amendment excluding micro-businesses, similar to the exemptions granted by the FDA for small producers under the food labeling laws.

So, if you want to help save Etsy sellers, stay-at-home crafters, and countless other small businesses, please visit the Handmade Toy Alliance. There you'll find a sample letter you can send to your congressman and an online petition you can sign, in addition to lots more info and links. Remember, the deadline is February 10th, so please act now if you're going to.

And that's it! We now return you to your regularly scheduled Wreckage.

UPDATE: A few of you have referenced Snopes (an urban legend/rumor fact-checker) in the comments, saying they called this law a false rumor. However, what Snopes was addressing was the resale of USED children's items and clothing, which will in fact still be legal after 2/10. (Click here to read the article.) All new items are still affected by the law.

UPDATE FROM JOHN: Um hi. The comments on this are done. It's all very interesting and I strongly suggest y'all read up on it further. And if you are desperate to make your voice heard, please send a letter to your representative, write about it on your personal blog or even e-mail your friends but I would ask that you not comment on other posts about this one. The only reason I am not taking this down is that Jen really does care about small businesses and she was trying to do a good thing by letting all of our awesome readers know about something that concerned her. That's it. Wreck On and happy Martin Luther King day!

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Reader Comments (117)

Megan said...
Snopes says it's false...

http://www.snopes.com/inboxer/pending/cpsia.asp


Take a look at that snopes link, it is referring only to the resale of used toys, not handmade crafts.

January 17, 2009 | Unregistered Commenterdressage_nut

This is finally on a broad radar; Forbes has a very succinct article right now. Rather than ranting and arguing in comments, continue to contact the CPSC and your members of Congress with requests for a reasonable, common-sense scaling back of this hydra.

January 17, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterWenonah4th

"The new safety act H.R. 4040 does not apply to small businesses unless that business has its own lable for mainstream consumption. WAHM’s will NOT be affected. due to the self regulation of the law which states “CERTAIN PRODUCTS OR MATERIALS- The Commission may, by regulation, exclude a specific product or material from the prohibition in subsection (a)” the subsection A states that anything that contains lead would be tested. your textiles are IMMUNE. secondly, the act states that any product being marketed for consumer use that is IMPORTED will be tested. This means anything that is produced here in the US which is already subject to lead laws will not be required to be tested."

From http://www.boutiquecafe.com/home/2008/12/17/1943/

January 17, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterJennifer

Ooh, thanks for that link! My father-in-law just started making non-painted wood building toys and he'll easily go under if this passes without an exclusion for micro-businesses.

January 17, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterWinona

This is really sad - and it is not a crock. Many artists and independent stores in my area have been fighting this legislation. I'm a mom, and personally I am a LOT more worried about the mass-produced stuff than I am about toymakers and artisans who willingly reveal what they use to make their products and where they obtain their materials.

January 17, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterTeresa

The last Anonymous commenter obviously doesn't get it. We're not talking about businesses that make millions of dollars. One of my best friends (and fellow blogger, Lisa(http://qtpies7.com) recently started making cute little barettes for little girls, just to help pay the bills for their large family.

They are basically made out of ribbon, which to me, doesn't sound like it would contain lead at all. That's just it, it doesn't matter WHAT the materials are, it won't be legal to sell the items after Feb 10th.

When she first told me about this law, I didn't believe it either and checked snopes myself. At that point, (about 2 weeks ago), there was NOTHING listed about this bill on their site. It was only at that time that the bill was ammended to exclude used items. Otherwise we could all say goodbye to finding great discounts at garage sales!

I understand the reason for this law, but don't believe those that voted it in looked at all the potential harm it could do to people struggling just to get by and put food on their tables in today's sorry economy.

January 17, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterI'm Losing It!

I'm one of those artists affected. I cannot tell you the amount of money that I have in materials that will now just sit in boxes. I work at an art gallery and I'm not the only one affected. I've created the "Corner of Shameless Self Promotion" for those of us affected. It is the front door display. I'm trying to sell as much of our stuff before the February 10 deadline. My post on this particular subject is:
http://baileysleaf.blogspot.com/2009/01/cpsia-oh-heck.html

Please do so consider taking action for those of us who do depend upon this as income/extra income.

Thank you.

January 17, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterBailey's Leaf

I work in a public library that is apparently full of toxic and dangerous lead-filled paper, at least according to this legislation! I have been hearing a lot about the ridiculousness of the inclusion of books (not toy books with metal or plastic, just plain old paper books), but I hadn't heard about this aspect of CPSIA. Thanks for the info...it gives me more to add to my letters!

January 17, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterGretchen

Told my mom about this, and she thinks it's ridiculous as well...her point was that you simply can't protect your kids from everything, and that it might be better to focus on things that are actually an issue.

So much of what I read about this law is that it had nothing to do with reality and everything to do with the members of Congress trying to look good in the media. "Look at me, I'm saving the kiddies!"

January 17, 2009 | Unregistered Commentermariethea

Thank you so much for posting this...I too stand to lose my business with this goes into effect, yet have certifications from my suppliers stating that their products do not contain lead. There are so many ways to make this manageable for ALL of us, so that we can keep our children safe AND stay in business. First poster...read a little closer and thing about this before passing such close-minded judgement.

January 17, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterDoodleBunz/DB Impressions

This week at Change.org, this issue won a spot of the top 10 pieces of legislation that will be reviewed by the new president! I've known about this for months and although what I sell on Etsy isn't targeted for kids under 12, it still really ticks me off.

I agree that if the materials have been tested, then the product shouldn't have to be. As it is now, if you make blue hats for kids, they would have to be tested separately from green hats.

Also, the testing isn't done in the U.S. and each test costs upwards of $300, I think. So yeah, while I'm all for the safety of the kiddies (Yes, I'm a mom too), this wasn't a very thought out piece of legislation.

See change.org at http://www.change.org/ideas. It's the next to last one in the second column.

January 17, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterStephanie

Is there any way a Canadian can show their support against this? I'm assuming not, but a lot of my favorite sellers on Etsy are in the States and this makes me very sad and definitely concerned for their businesses!

January 17, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterKendra

Letters sent, this bit of legislative mess is crap.

January 17, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterZhoen

Please see the following link:

http://www.snopes.com/inboxer/pending/cpsia.asp

--Lisa

January 17, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterLisa

The resale market is still nervous about this. The amended law that came out last week (I'm a bow maker so I've been keeping up on this since it will affect my business) says that resellers don't have to test the products but they will be held responsible criminally if they sell something that contains +600 ppm lead (+300 ppm starting in August) or phthalates even if it is done unknowingly. The fines would put a reseller out of business in a heartbeat.

Straight from the CPSA's website:
"The new safety law does not require resellers to test children�s products in inventory for compliance with the lead limit before they are sold. However, resellers cannot sell children�s products that exceed the lead limit and therefore should avoid products that are likely to have lead content, unless they have testing or other information to indicate the products being sold have less than the new limit. Those resellers that do sell products in violation of the new limits could face civil and/or criminal penalties."

January 17, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterKarin

I'll have to check, but I believe that proposed law was struck down this week. I will look.

January 17, 2009 | Unregistered Commentermarymurtz

Dawn/Anonymous,

Just a thought, this law requires testing for lead and phthalates. It would put small artisan businesses out of business such as those that make organic toys, clothes, etc. This law also increases the risk that parents will be lulled into a false sense of security. It will not protect your kids from the mass marketed toys that major manufacturers make cheaply in countries such as China. It would not be possible to foresee all of the "additives" that can be put into products in a country that puts melamine in milk. It would not, for example, protect your kids from a product like Aquadots that put kids into the hospital in comas because they were manufactured with a chemical like the date-rape drug. What would protect kids better, in my opinion, would be to require companies to vet all of their contractors AND their subcontractors AND to oversee the entire manufacturing process of the products made in their name. That is, take responsibility and put some teeth into it. If a company neglects its duty, hold its officers criminally negligent.

As stated by others, this law was ill-conceived and requires testing of articles such as clothes, books, etc that have never been associated with lead or phthalates. It will remove a parents choice to buy children's items that are made locally and in small batches that would be much safer than what you'll find in your local toy megastore.

Ann

January 17, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterAnonymous

Don't get me started, I have a LOT to say about this law, but thank you for putting this out there. THIS IS NOT A RUMOR AND HAS NOT BEEN STRUCK DOWN!! I sell a lot of stuff for mothers of the under 12 set and my business would take a HUGE hit if this were to stay the way it was written. Not many people that I know have even heard of this law. But it was, in fact, voted in the top 10 issues on change.org so it will be brought up to Obama.

Second hand stores may be exempt from the testing, and it seems like they may be looking at letting obviously non-lead-containing materials go without testing - like straight fabric. Almost everything I make is made exclusively of high quality fabric. There is NO LEAD in my products. Testing for lead that isn't there would put me out of business. A SAFE and HIGH QUALITY business.

Enforcing this law will put the burden of testing on the little people, putting the small businesses who consistently provide high quality items out of business, therefor making MORE of our toys COME FROM CHINA!

What I find curious is that most of the testing facilities to test for this lead on the toys that are coming out of China ARE IN CHINA!!!

Harumph.

January 17, 2009 | Unregistered Commenterkate

Maybe it's a stupid question, but instead of trying to suppress a law that makes sense (no lead in any product can only be a good thing), why don't you try instead to make it so that each item tested only costs $4.

And what's with that price of $400 to $4000 ? You're telling us that someone selling a baby t-shirt for $20 has to get each of them tested, for $400 each ?
I think you need to explain better what exactly is that price about, because, although I would like to help, so far nothing can make me believe that a baby t-shirt is suddenly going to have a production cost going up $400.
Maybe I'm missing something, but I would like a better explanation before taking any action.

January 17, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterLysambre

If anyone has a problem with this they can take it up with the democrats. Who do you think wrote this law? I am all in favor of more safety for our children, I have two of my own. But a lot of laws get written trying to protect people (often from themselves) and it usually negatively affects businesses of all sizes. This should not be a big surprise, they pass laws like this all the time- so how come it's only when it negatively affects small businesses that people throw a fit?

January 17, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterAnonymous

This law not only negatively affects crafters, but ANY second-hand store that may be selling kids' toys! And probably most Christmas time Ebayers, as well!

In this economy, we CANNOT afford to lose these places.

Perhaps they will just not take any toys - which means the market in today's toys just became a collector's market...

Sigh, our toys didn't have lead in them - we played with sticks and rocks. But our ammo did. And all 3 of us are Mensa level. Go figure.

January 17, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterBrandy

I was just in a gourmet food shop the other day and I see they're STILL selling those metallic "nonpareil" cake decorations. They are labeled in the fine print "for decorative use only," and since they bear that label, they don't fall under food safety laws. So there is no ingredient list. Long ago I was told they contain lead. Even longer ago, when my mom used to put them on us kids' birthday cakes, you betcha we all ate them.

They're CAKE decorations, fer cryin out loud, they taste SWEET, and of course they're not actually labeled "poison" or "do not eat," they're just labeled "For decorative purposes only."

Perhaps it isn't the decorator who should be penalized for using that sort of thing... but perhaps the professional decorator, as the "gateway" to the consumer, unfortunately does have to take that responsibility.

January 17, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterSusan

To people singing the tune of the very first commenter...we don't want your children(and ours) to have any lead in their toys...BUT here is the problem:

I make kick-ass hair bows for little girls. I have a certified letter from each and everyone of my suppliers with testing results showing that NONE of the products I use have any lead or toxins in them... well according to the new law that is not good enough. Even though it is a FACT that everything I use in a bow is toxin and lead free...I would need to get my ENTIRE bow tested just because it is an item in and of itself. Not only that, since my bows are all custom...I would have to get EVERY SINGLE bow I make tested...that's $400 to $4000 per bow.

Why should someone who has certified toxin free ribbon, lead free hardware and toxin free hot glue have to get their completed bow tested that is comprised of all of these products.

I haven't read all of the other comments yet because #1 struck a sour note instantly. Do your research before you make statements such as these...READ the actual law and THEN make your comments in a more educated way so that you don't come off as ignorant.

If our Cake Wreck blogger uses toxin and lead free paint and toxin and lead free canvas'(or whatever she uses) why should she have to ge the finished product tested???

#1 commenter...you obviously have NO IDEA this law will affect your life, as well.

Signed,
Holly G
hollyg@kickassbows.com
www.kickassbows.com
who is not afraid to leave her name and who has read EVERY SINGLE line of the new law.

January 17, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterDJ Holly Rock

I have seen places offering inexpensive lead test kits; the place I was linked to was here: http://www.firemountaingems.com/shopping.asp?skw=KWTOOLLEADTEST
(I'm not affiliated with that company, but I'm a fan of theirs. There are probably other places selling similar testing kits at reasonable prices.)

This does sound like a good basic concept that turned into a nightmare with not enough forethought and some bad wording in the law creation process.

January 17, 2009 | Unregistered Commenterazurelunatic

This doesn't effect anything primarily made of fabric, including handmade and/or used clothing. I sent an email the other day asking for clarification on handmade toys (wooden trains and the like) and have been keeping an eye out on the site to see if it's addressed.

I've seen a lot of people flying off the handle (some of my fellow beloved knitters, sadly) about how this act is going to ruin Etsy and small, handworkers. Most of the people yelling the loudest (and I'm not including you oh, Queen of Cake Wrecks) haven't even read the silly thing. I'd recommend that people read it before more rumors and half-truths get spread.

There! My PSA for the day. ;)

January 17, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterCorbie

Lysambre-

$400 to test a baby shirt- absolutely. Each component must be tested individually. So the fabric the shirt is made of must be tested. Next, each color of ink printed on the shirt must be tested. Most [rice quotes seem to be between $75-$100 per component. So a white cotton tea shirt screen printed with four colors would cost around $400 to test. Or say you have an organic baby onesie that someone has appliqued a rainbow on with ribbon detailing-- $1050 please:

$75 for the onesie
$75 for the snaps
$75 for red fabric applique
&75 for blue fabric applique
$75 for yellow fabric applique
$75 for green fabric applique
$75 for purple fabric applique
$75 for orange fabric applique
$75 for red grosgrain ribbon
&75 for blue grosgrain ribbon
$75 for yellow grosgrain ribbon
$75 for green grosgrain ribbon
$75 for purple grosgrain ribbon
$75 for orange grosgrain ribbon


Outlandish and ridiculous isn't it?

Two bloggers have posted their costs and one site has captured quotes from a variety of testing facilities:

http://www.happypandababy.com/blog/2008/12/16/cpsia-testing-research-for-happy-panda/

http://turtleparktots.blogspot.com/2009/01/true-cost-of-cpsia-third-party.html

http://cpsia-central.ning.com/forum/topics/collecting-testing-quotes

January 17, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterLucyLou

For those who don' think this will impact you. Do you pay property taxes??? Imagine if every school had to dispose of items that do have certification by 2/10/09 books, art supplies, music instruments, furniture, science equipment and so on. Wonder what impact this might have on your tax bill for 2010.

And to Dawn, your children can use crafting supplies you buy at any shop in the US, if these meet compliance come 2/10. A crafter can make items using these EXACT same components and suddenly be subject to third party testing. This law is so insane and hugely detrimental to our already fragile economy.

This is the Forbes Op Ed article reference above that is one of the best explanation about how sweeping this legislation is.


Sandy

http://www.forbes.com/opinions/2009/01/16/cpsia-safety-toys-oped-cx_wo_0116olson.html

January 17, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterAnonymous

You can't blame any one political party. I can't find a job in small town American, so the Republicans are to blame?

I am not an Etsy shop owner or shopper, and in the time I've sewn for other people, I've made maybe 5 items for someone else's child. I buy very little online from small business owners, because I get irritated that I get gouged on shipping. 1.85 to send it and I get charged $6? I'll go to a store that isn't making me pay 3 times the shipping, thanks, and these are usually larger companies, not WAHMs who are trying to eke out every cent they can. (No, I'm not trying to debate this, I've heard it before. Supplies and overhead, etc.) But even with my attitude about it, I stand against the law. Hitting the small out of home business is done to create a surplus of revenue, not to make the kids safer, or they would have made the manufacturers have to test all their supplies for sale, not the businesses that are barely making a living.

January 17, 2009 | Unregistered Commentersewducky

I'm sorry to be rude but I work in public health. I love this blog I come to it everyday. But, there is no way any lawmaker would allow any loopholes to this new regulation. It had been in the making for many years. Most people do not realize what a problem lead poisoning is.

January 17, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterAnonymous

Oh and I'm not sure if people realize this but your local board of health will have a certified lead inspector. They have the ability to test lead on toys,etc. I am sure if you bring the product you craft to your board of health they can help you out. That way everyone is happy.

January 17, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterAnonymous

If the post from -I'm Losing It- was directed at my Anon post (and it might not have been, in which case please disregard), I would like to point out that I do realize they're not talking about huge multi-million dollar businesses. I'm honestly confused as to where they thought I was saying that they were similiar.

As to their friend, they're not the only one who has friends that make hand made hair ornaments (as well as jewelry and necklaces). I'm very familiar with the fears and issues arising from this situation in terms of fabrics and materials. That's also why I'm less then completely faithful in the raw material sources, I've seen the issues that can arise. NOT because I doubt the dignity and honour of those who hand make items.

I fully support changes to this legislation that would make the creators of hand made items at the very LEAST have a much more reasonable sliding scale put in based on their income per product/size of their line. If they make twenty of something and only make a few hundred at most I could see paying 20 bucks to test the line instead of 4k.

However, while I've already writen to my representitive a strongly worded letter outlining my concerns and asking them to seriously move foreword with finding a solution that everyone can live with, all I can do is give my moral support to anyone who is treated unfairly by this law and strongly urge others to do the same.

-D.Banana

January 17, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterAnonymous

I totally agree with Anonymous, January 17, 2009 12:11 PM! Why should a small business be exempt from safety laws???????

January 17, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterDanielle

strength in numbers?
all legitimate non-poisonous children's products microbusinesses continue to do business as usual...then allow yourselves to be "caught" en masse on feb 10 - the paperwork alone --> can show the idiocy of how over-reaching (and out of touch w/ reality) the legislation is (and legislators are). maybe then, by feb 11, when astronomical numbers are suddenly added to the unemployment and criminal figures, legislators will amend the legislation to clarify who are the intended "manufacturers" and "private labelers." how in the world can a small/micro-business survive if REPRESENTATIVE SAMPLES are required to be tested when the SAMPLE comprises the ENTIRE (or relatively entire) INVENTORY?

cliche, i know, but why do they call common sense, "common," when it's clearly not?

January 17, 2009 | Unregistered Commenterblade girl

thank you for posting this! i wrote to my rep and one senator (the non-corruptly attained one...i'm from IL haha). i love etsy and all things handmade so i completely support this amendment! thanks again!

January 17, 2009 | Unregistered Commentermaggie grace

Thank you SO MUCH for bringing attention to this important issue. I've been blogging about it as well, but I only have a handful of readers. You can make a much bigger impact. I have a very small business selling hair clips. Though I won't be impacted financially by shutting down (and I WILL have to shut down because the testing simply isn't cost effective for me), I believe this law will completely devastate our already crumbling economy. And I just hate what it will do to the crafting community.

To Lysambre:
Go to this link to see an example of how much the testing will cost Happy Panda to make just one little onesie: http://www.happypandababy.com/blog/2008/12/16/cpsia-testing-research-for-happy-panda/.

January 17, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterJenny

Thank you for posting this!!

BTW resellers are still affected, they still have to comply to the lead limits so while they're not "required" to test, they still are subject to steep ($100,000) fines for selling items with lead in them, so in reality they have to either not sell anything that could potentially have lead (toys with paint), or test.

This law is also threatening to shut down kid's libraries. It's ridiculous. It'll ruin our economy and not make our kids any safer.

January 17, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterMarcy

This is terrible, ridiculous, sad. But thanks for posting it- I already emailed my Senator. I sure hope they exempt small home-based businesses. If not, shame on those law makers for abandoning common sense.

January 18, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterKristen

This post:"Broken down for the Layperson" (http://www.etsy.com/forums_thread.php?thread_id=6000723)
on Etsy tried to help but actually made me more frustrated, as it points out that technically all consumer items can be affected, and that Congress hasn't even yet set up the minimums for testing guidelines.
*sigh*

January 18, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterMouse

@LucyLou
Thank you very much for your detailed explanation :).
And I agree that the cost is ridiculous.
Now I understand, I will take action to help !

January 18, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterLysambre

Holly G you're awesome. Love it. Cake Wrecks, you're awesome. I'm glad you got 87,694 votes for best food blog or whatever. :-)

We should set up an Etsy shop and list things like hairbows and jingle balls and blankets, etc. and list then as costing what they would cost with the new lead testing law in effect. $400 to $4000 + selling price. Maybe a $420 baby hair bow would drive the point home.

January 18, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterStephanie

And look, I'm not against the law at all. But I sure do think they could have come up with a better solution. And while it might be amusing to see the collective facepalm occur when, on 2/11, something horrible happens financially and thousands of crafters have to close shop...

Even if the law is found unjust, do you know how hard it would be to recover your reputation after? And the fines! And the court fees! (Do I smell a class action suit or what?)

There are better ways to keep my most beautiful baby girl safe.

January 18, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterStephanie

What the statute actually says is that objects that inherently do not contain lead will be exempt from the testing requirement. Objects made out of wood, paper, precious metals, etc. will NOT have to be tested. Most of these kinds of laws are implemented by regulatory committees which are ultimately in charge of making the exceptions. There will probably end up being an exception for small businesses.

January 18, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterSarah H.

To Anon! OH LORD, you need to read this law more thoroughly! This law actually will end up shuttering small independent crafters and toy makers who never even used lead or other dangerous chemicals-- think natural wood blocks, crocheted stuffed animals, etc. These are the same crafters many of us turned to last Christmas when the 'big' toy manufacturers were recalling their lead-filled items. Changes to the CPSIA's wording calls for random testing or holding very small crafters exempt, which would mean we, as parents, use our judgement when purchasing. Can you imagine?

This law will benefit those large manufacturers who produce items in China, because they will be the only ones able to afford the testing fees. Small family businesses, like the wonderful ones found on etsy, will be extinct... in a horrible economy. Seems pretty un-American to me.

In positive news, with a lot of letter writing and campaigning, this topic has made the top 10 items that will be presented to President Obama. See http://www.change.org/ideas

January 18, 2009 | Unregistered Commentermrs. q.

Thank you for calling attention to this! If small home crafters are buying fabric, thread and polyester fill from a big crafts or sewing store and making dolls or clothing from them, it's ridiculous to require testing! Obviously the stores from which the supplies were bought have already been through inspections to make sure their products are safe! This is redundant and will just hamstring the stay home parents who are trying to eke out a living.

January 18, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterStephanie

My girlfriend and I are both artists, and this would very much affect her business. She is a children's author and illustrator ( www.thecaribbeancaribou.com ). She wrote, illustrated, and published her books. There is no possibility that the books contain lead, and considering she only makes about $7 a book and only orders printed batches of around 250 books at a time, the extra cost for testing these books would cut her profits down by 23%. And that's only if she sells them ALL at full price. It would take forever to actually make a profit on the books, and then if she ever ordered another batch of books to sell more, the extra cost of testing would put her way back in the negatives again. She mostly does this to have her work be seen and to see the happiness she brings to children. There's not much profit to be made, and these testing fees would make it too expensive, making it almost pointless to even try to provide quality products for children.

This is ridiculous, and there must be some sort of amendment. This would in no way help the economy, and would cause it so we buy even more of our children's products from large companies importing from China instead of the higher quality products from small businesses in the US. And considering this law was meant to target the large toy companies who manufacture overseas, it's ironic that the law is hurting the safe alternative (Small U.S. businesses) many parents turned to when they worried about the mass produced toys containing lead.

January 18, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterAaron James Patterson

The inexpensive testing is XRF (X-ray fluorescence) testing which has a 50% false-positive rate on items that contain small amts of lead (like under 500ppm) then you'll have to prove your case by getting ICP testing thru an accredited testing program which is most definitely not cost effective. The limits are by Feb 09 - 600ppm, Aug 09 - 300ppm, and Nov 2011 - 100ppm so XRF will be somewhat okay until August but who wants go thru all this again in 6 months when most of our products inherently don't contain lead.

The part that most crafters are balking at is that we have to have every single one of our products tested - not our materials - the finally product so if I make a pinwheel bow, a tuxedo bow and a flower bow out of the same 2 ribbons, same spool of floss, the same batch of clips and the same glue stick, I have to have all 3 tested. This makes custom items nearly impossible to afford to test b/c we make them on such a small scale. Only unbleached, undyed, untreated cotton and wool have been exempt and if I bleach and/or dye my product, it has to be tested the way the law is written right now.

January 18, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterKarin

Heres an idea why not make selling of paints containing lead illegal, that way the home crafter industry will not be required to pay for testing if the products they make are made solely of already deemed safe materials. To the people who are freaking about their kids getting lead, well honestly lead is everywhere, just in low levels. You better make sure all those pieces of furniture and brick a brack that your kiddies might come in contact with is lead free too. Be sure to test the mac and cheese too. You have no idea what the govt allows to be in your food. For petes sake dont take your kids to school or other peoples houses, you dont know, what all the things your kids will come in contact with, are made of. Face it the world is full of things that might hurt your kids. Parents Beware or lighten up. Your generation chewed on toys that were slathered in lead paint, and you turned out ok!

January 18, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterDarth Rob

This is a good way to drive away fans. I come here for pictures of crazy cakes with funny captions, not politically driven fights. It was fun while it lasted. Deleted from favourites list....Bye!

January 18, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterMadeleine

To all those of you who think we can buy our own lead testing kits, or take it to our local health department, or whoever. YOU ARE WRONG! The testing must be done by an accredited lab, there are currently only 14 in our entire country. I am thinking that I'm just going to change all my prices so that I can afford to stay in business. I'll be selling my clippies 2 for $230.00 if anyone is interested!

January 18, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterChrista

Yep! because.. dontcha know that my toy food made outta fabric and polyfil fluff is FULL OF LEAD Anonymous first poster yep..

hope you like supporting the THOUSANDS of stay at home parents who will be forced to go out of business, have to go on welfare because the job market sucks beyond sucking, and daycare costs more than an entire paycheck just for a single kid for a month.

INSTEAD
we're going to trust all the toys coming from China.. sure, one batch will be tested.. then you'll see MORE recalls for lead and other unsafe products.. wonderful.

Lets just hope the testing FABRIC goes through before it goes to the store is enough.. hell why not just shut down the fabric store too? Since generally, yanno, people buy all the cute kids printed fabrics for their kids.. right? Right , well the law makes that testing not enough..

it makes me want to puke,

January 18, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterKisa

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