A few weeks ago I saw a awesome video about Raleigh Denim. They’re a small company in Raleigh, NC who makes high quality jeans. Even though I haven’t tried on their product, yet, I’m sold. Maybe it was the story telling craft of the short documentary. But it’s also my love of products that are handmade and done in small batches.
Of course there are many other factors that sell you on something. But as a social entrepreneur I’m enthralled with a return to quality. Globalization and greed has destroyed the viable economics of making small batch products. North Carolina is one of the hardest hit States in the US in this regard. Our furniture and fiber arts are now a fraction of the state economy it once was. The effect is a loss of thousands of jobs. A serious problem for many many people.
My mother’s father Lester was a huge influence on me. Not just because of his kindness but because of his craftsmanship. He worked most of his adult life making furniture. While he was a manufacturer he had pride in craft.
Granddad helped me learn to love making things. It didn’t hurt he gave me all kinds of tools and showed me how to use them. I expect its because of him I love things like Raleigh Denim. Its fascinating how people, long after their death, can have profound effects on their children. I wonder what lasting effects I will have on my son?
Raleigh Denim isn’t the only example. Here’s a video about Oxxford Clothes, who claim to be, the last hand crafted suit tailor in the United States.
As I work to create new businesses with awesome products and services I will remember these companies. May all the things I sell be as special.