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What does Handmade really means in the Ethical Fashion Industry ?

With the rise of the current trend of purchasing handmade and ethical goods, those words are  often being misused with high street fashion brands using greenwashing practices which does not help us as consumers to know if we are buying genuinely from a brand that do good for its people and the environment. So, here is what we actually mean behind purchasing Handmade creations:

 

  1. Handmade is Sustainable


Most often and it is a generality now, the mass produced goods are produced in low wages countries located in far away countries, or called developing countries,  to reach the end consumer. In fact, it requires a lot of energy for the goods to pass all the intermediaries to finally end up into our homes. Creating an item by hand requires less energy as it is generally made by  a small scale company using no intermediaries and sourcing locally ingredients/materials they to produce the final product, which makes it more environmentally sustainable.

  1. Support someone

Handmade products are made by someone who is passionate about what he creates and spend time thinking about each step of the designs. By purchasing handmade items you are not only supporting a person and its talent but also a small business with the thrive of being an entrepreneur and making a difference in this fast consumption society. Unfortunately, purchasing from high street brands,  we have no transparency on the person who is working on the product and we have no insurance this person is paying accordingly for the work provided or working in good conditions.

Handmade creations paiting art

 

  1. Support their passion & creativity


Creativity and passion are a very personal to each of us and highlight a specific journey, dream, inspiration that the creator is going through and this is magical ! Big chains are not allowing their employees to  bring out their creativity or talent, they have specific requirements to work through and that need to be mass produced in a restricted time. Profitability is key, there is absolutely no room for inspiration here.

 

  1. Handmade = Quality over Quantity


We often hear that purchasing handmade can be costly and we argue with that statement for several reasons. Handmade items are delicately and thoughtly designed & created by someone in his/her small workshop spending more time than the usual 9 to 5 working hours using high quality materials or ingredients which results producing a high quality item that will last much longer than a mass produced item. The cost will then effectively be higher taking into account those factors (hours, purchase of high quality materials, tools etc) than a big company will not necessarily have as they are bargaining the cheapest materials made by people whom are unfairly pay and treated. This process allows the Big Chains to have more margins and resell the goods a lot cheaper. As a result, when purchasing handmade you are looking at the quality and the creativity behind the item not the quantity which makes it at the end of the day a lot cheaper than buying 5 cheap items that will stay in your wardrobe.

Sunni

  1. Bring Exclusivity to your wardrobe


When visiting a small business physical or online store, you are immersing in the brand’s universe which is very down to his past experiences, daily inspiration etc.. which means you are buying a creation, somehow a unique piece of art that you will not find in any other shops and on anyone else. It is then a personalised gift to treat yourself or your family & friends; something unique that will make a statement in your wardrobe and that you will cherish in a lifetime.

  1. Support local communities

By buying from small businesses no matter their location, you are helping someone else’s dream, somewhere in this world, to come true and to invest in his/her local community. The outsourcing of big companies production in low wages countries, has lead many local & rural communities deprived of activities and jobs which we can help by giving people a chance to stay and work in the areas they lived with their families.

  1. Preserving local & traditional craftsmanship

What makes a product so unique and exclusive is its designs and cultural identity. By supporting skilled craftsmen and women from around the globe, you are allowing them to express / work with their traditional skills and ancestral methods that needs to be remembered and preserved for the next generations as being part of the History of a country. Will the crafts, skills will have more impact for the next generation and will be remembered?

  1. Supporting a country local economy

By purchasing an item in a country, you are contributing to the country’s economy and helping in the country development and purchasing power. If we are having a closer look at the journey, let’s say you are purchasing a product or farmer good exclusively produced in Spain it means you are participating of building an income for the maker or producer which then will be redistributed within the country. However, when you spend money in a high street chains, you are not actually sure where the money is actually going and how the profits are redistributed, probably not in the country from which you are purchasing your item.

  1. Introducing less chemicals and toxics in your life

Choosing handmade products are generally made using locally sourced and organic products, without adding any chemicals, harmful for us. By purchasing a handmade face scrub, you are ensuring to receive a high quality products only made using real ingredients that you could find in your kitchen and you will see real benefits on your skin health.

  1. Handmade is simply the best :)

Buying handmade means you are concerned about the environmental and societal issues and ready to vote with your dollar to make this world a more sustainable place to live in. Purchasing handmade give us the power to reward someone for its creativity and for making a difference in this fast consumption society and be able to redistribute wealth within the country we are buying from. We can finally learn about who made our products, how are they made and where? 3 simple questions that costs a lot to our planet and our people.