If you're wondering what to get dear old Aunt Edna for Christmas, here's an idea. How about a hand-crafted wooden jewelry box or copper purse?
Made by an inmate.
In Arizona, there is a special Prison Outlet store that sells "a wide range of arts & crafts produced by inmates incarcerated in Arizona including extremely high quality items made exclusively for the store in our metal and wood fabrication facilities in the State Prison across the street."
It's like an inmate Etsy!
And if you see something that you really love, you even know where to find the (con) artist.
These hand-crafted boxes ($25) are a great place to store expensive jewelry. And they don't even necessarily look like jewelry boxes, so it could be misleading to any burglars! Oh wait ...
Just think, a prisoner had to construct these wooden quails ($15) from pure memory, reminding us to appreciate having the ability to view nature. I imagine it would be pretty difficult to whittle wood with shackled hands.
I'm not sure how efficient a copper purse ($35-$60) would be (who wants to bet a male constructed it?), but I think it's safe to assume that a rapist was not behind the makings of this one. If he went back to his sick ways, he wouldn't want a bunch of women carrying around copper purses -- that's a friggin' weapon.
These large western-themed key chains ($7.50) make it really easy for someone to grab them out of your purse you to find them in your purse.
All jokes aside, this is actually a really great idea. It keeps the prisoners out of trouble while they're in there and gives them marketable skills for when they're released into the real world. The proceeds from the products are divided between the inmate and a victims' rights group. Plus, the prisoners that participate in this Martha Stewart-like program (heh) have a 30-percent less chance of returning to prison. Everyone wins!
Would you ever buy a product made from an inmate?
Images via aci.az.gov