Tuesday, December 4, 2007

"Made in China" What do yout think?

Sorry I didn't write earlier... I've been wrapping my head around a few things lately...

Last week I went to the One of a Kind show in Toronto because next March, I've been accepted to sell my armbags and wanted to see the set up and have a feel for the event. It's an exhibit that features original and fun gifts from artists and artisans. There are so many people visiting this exhibit it is insane.... Right now, I definitely have to build up my inventory for the show.

On another note, I was contacted by two big fashion magazines in Canada to promote my armbags in a few months. I'm very happy about that since it will help me alot to get the word out there. In a few days, I will also be selling my products on a US site called www.shoporangebutton.com.

On the production side, the bags are of great quality and I am very please and proud to produce them locally. In addition to provide work to people from my country, it gives me much more flexibility and control to make sure the products are made up to my standards. Right now, these two key points are very important.

Like I mention on my website (and my friends can confirm), I aboslutely love Asia but do not want to produce my bags over there at this time. First, I don't have the volume and second, I cannot see in which conditions the workers are doing their job. Exploitation happens everywhere but the high demand in these asian countries increases the pressure to deliver quickly and at the cheapest price and therefore has a negative impact on workers. I think it is inevitable at one point to make a product like mine in China or India due to volume (look at Matt&Nat bags), but when the day comes, I will make sure to do business with manufacturers that have a good reputation and offer good working conditions.

Of courses, making my products locally increases the costs and therefore price but it is everybody's reponsibility to educate consumers about the impact of always looking for the cheapest price. I think more people are sensitive about this issue and are willing to pay a little more to support responsible products.

What do you think about products "made in China"?