Tuesday, July 03, 2012

celebrate american made

this mt.rushmore bank, no surprise, made in china.
It's almost America's birthday. And to celebrate, I wanted to share some truly inspiring links to other craftspeople and corporations still working in the United States. These are my heroes. The artists who are continuing traditions or remembering skills nearly lost to globalization and technology. Companies that are raising their prices so they can employ people in their own communities.

Click here for videos from amazing companies handcrafting in the United States. Some are old companies still doing it right and others are upstarts building brands with good old fashioned values. Lots of sexy leather and denim. The web address has the f-bomb in it, but all the clips are so wholesome I cried more than once.
Also here for The American List compiled by A Continuous Lean. This list of stylish goods covers clothing and accessories, bicycles, even lighters and ice cream scoops.

My all time favorite heritage couture Alabama Chanin. Nathalie Chanin sets the bar for business sense and sustainable style. Her books have a beloved spot on my studio bookshelf and her blog is always good for a dose of inspiration and southern hospitality. She makes the clothes I will wear when I am wealthy with cash.

My friend Carol Berry recently turned me on to this amazing Fibershed project. These inspiring folks are working to produce an entire year round wardrobe from within a 150mile radius. The clothes are not just sewn or spun from imported fabric and fibers, but all raw materials are grown in the region. The project cultivates a community of farmers to raise fiber animals, cotton and dye plants, works to preserve or rebuild facilities to  process the fibers into material and educates craftspeople to design and produce garments of quality and style. The photos are lovely and the idea is revolutionary, like the war we are celebrating.

And what would a list of American goods be without some of my hometown favorites? Texture clothing, Spincycle Yarns and everyone at the Farmer's Market. I personally owe a chunk of gratitude to the folks at sustainable connections who lead the nation in local economic revival. Bellingham is a town that understands the importance of shopping locally. People will come back to my booth three weeks in a row waiting for the right hat instead of just buying a hat that will do at Target.

So if you really love America or independence, Spend a little more money the next time you make a purchase and support a business that still supports it's community.

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