Back To Work After A Death In The Family
Unfortunately my grandmother, aka Nanny, passed away a couple of weeks ago. All of the chaos that unfolded after, family flying in from everywhere, etc, has kept me away from the computer. I have, however, been doing some sewing, buying and planning during this time. That being said, I AM BACK! I have all sorts of great new tote bags coming out soon that I am really excited about.
New Equipment and Materials!
My birthday was a few weeks ago and I got the mother of all sewing machines! It’s the new Singer Professional 2010. It is a great machine but with my luck one of the prongs in the power outlet, within the machine, broke off into the power cord?! Figures, so now I am down one machine and up lots of eager customers! Things could be worse though of course.
I have stocked up on all sort of materials over the last few weeks; I blew through my original fabric stock quickly. We have been going through my grandmother’s huge home and have found a whole bunch a fabric from all over the world! From fabric samples straight out of 1950’s NYC to silk from Asia. We’ve really found an amazing mix of high quality textiles. I obviously got my knack for nice fabric from my Nanny! I also bought some great vintage fabric off of Etsy.com and was given a whole box full of relatively new fabric that someone decided they weren’t going to be able to use the way they had planned. So I am all stocked up with great fabric and notions!!
Interfacing Dilemma Solved!
I have been struggling to find some sort of alternative to synthetic interfacing so commonly used today. I came across some organic cotton interfacing (they only have a limited supply though) and regular 100% cotton interfacing. Both only come in the fusible variety of interfacing and I do not know what is in the glue, but, I figure it is still better than the synthetic interfacing. Using the interfacing is making the quality of my bags increase so much more than I thought it would. Higher quality bags means that they will last you longer so overall this is the most sustainable option for the company and I hope that you all agree! I also came across some cotton and bamboo batting, I’ll play around with that too once I build up some more inventory!
Getting Out There!
The idea that I need to get my products out into boutiques and into markets has been reinforced repetitively over the month that I have been selling my tote bags online. Tote bags are definitely a product that people need to see and touch before they buy from you for the first time. Once people have bought a tote bag from me in person then I am confident that they will feel comfortable buying another from my online shop and recommending Reclaimed Threads Sustainable Bags to their friends.
So now they key lies in getting out into the brick and mortar market place! I am looking forward to this and if anyone has any advice about where to start looking for stores that might want to carry my sustainable tote bags, how to price products for wholesale or how to market yourself then drop me a line! I love hearing from all of you and find that I get some of the best advice this way!
I’m also starting an online picture account so that I can share more pictures of fabrics that I come across, finished products and Reclaimed Threads in action (sewing, buying, at fairs, etc). So I will be sure to reference to that on Twitter as I update it with pictures!
To Wrap Up
I am excited that the company is already evolving and improving! I cannot wait to get all of the new bags finished and up for sale because they are turning out so nicely and I am really proud of them! I love that life has worked out so that I can be a 25 year old with my own company that reflects my passions for being creative and living sustainably. I am learning so much and enjoying every minute of work. Creating sustainable tote bags for everyone to enjoy is so much fun and watching someone love a bag that you made with your own hands is extremely rewarding! So things are looking bright and I can’t wait to give everyone another update next month!
‘Til then, remember to stop back and catch the Etsy Shopper weekly feature (picking up again next Thursday, October 22, spotlight on Earrings) and other miscellaneous features promoting sustainable living every Tuesday (starting up again next Tuesday, October 20 with “Halloween Goodies”). Thanks for all of your support and spread the word!