The choice between hand-crafted and machine-made lighting is very easy to spot in a pendant light for most consumers.
Why do we say that hard-crafted is better?
All else aside, someone dedicated a part of their lives to learning how to make a particular item or style to the best of their ability. They will also make far fewer items than a machine, and you are now one of a select few to own this chosen hand-crafted item.
Craftsmen and women have a tremendous attention to each detail, an ability to quality control every element, and can select only the most appropriate and best quality materials.
The uniqueness of each piece coming out of the hands of a craftsman or woman cannot be replicated by any soul-less machine. The “uniqueness” factor carries in itself a story, a soul which the owner of such item feels in a personal way, as if it establishes a relation with the creator. It provides that sensation of having something very personal in your hands.
Machine made generally is something that's designed for mass manufacturing - often manufactured using inexpensive materials, designed for most cost reductions and minimal manufacturing speed, that Customer enjoyment and longevity.
A craftsman can adapt to the variations in materials. The grain structure of wood, range scars in leather hides and even variances in factory-made mass-produced metal. A machine stamping out thousands of pendant light shades doesn't have this ability of course.
A machine would not be able to add the touches that a craftsman does which add to the charm and character of the product.
No two handmade items are identical. Slight variations in colour, shading, texture and grain are inherent in a handmade item. No two items are alike within an acceptable margin, so that every single one is one-of-a-kind. This means that every handmade item you purchase is also one-of-a-kind.
So when you go to buy your lighting, or any product for that matter - are you after something mass-produced (likely by a big business), or something you know has been made with care and attention by a real person?
The decision is yours.