"The world has always gone forward when people have dared to have crazy ideas"
One of our biggest aims as a business has always been to help consumers understand the power and impact of their purchases - and how to use this for good. Instrumental to the latter is the promotion of #wearyourvalues and #buylesslovemore, so with that we need to maintain a careful balance between our community’s passion for Prickly and how much we sell.
The support we receive is unparalleled and every day it blows us away. Nonetheless, we also have a responsibility to make sure that we are not partaking in the original harm that we set out to fight against – overconsumption in the fashion industry.
It is a tale as old as time really.
You set out to make a positive difference in this world, and as the ‘little guy’ your fierce motivation pays off. Then, as success builds up, you begin to lose sight of that original mission. You climb the ladder and go from looking up to looking down; ‘cut-throat’ industry and capitalism slowly swallowing you up and suddenly, you’ve become the original thing you were fighting against.
This is our biggest fear as a small independent business, constantly dealing with the pressure of ‘growth’ and sales equating to success like most of our competitors in fast fashion who need to push people to buy more cheap garments - made from overseas labour and synthetic plastic - to achieve their definition of growth…
We will not succumb to this pressure. We will not become what we are fighting against.
‘Sell less to more people, instead of selling a lot to a few’ is what we’ve identified as the right mentality for our slow fashion business. We are also profoundly against viewing any of you as ‘easy targets’ that we can convince to buy things through crafty marketing tactics. We genuinely care.
Something which has struck us recently is how products such as whisky come with health warnings, and rightfully so because as much as we love it, if we consume it irresponsibly it can cause us harm…. yet fashion consumption is not viewed in the same regard. We think it should be. So, our next point of action to Repeal the harm of fast fashion, is the introduction of our action point 2… ‘Repeal It Tags’.
The way we are going to #repealit here is by monitoring our orders and acting responsibly when we see that someone has purchased a large amount from us. The tags are going to be wee handwritten labels included in these orders that will be highly personalised – no generic instructions here! Just a personable message that will provide inspiration for how to #repealit, and alternative ways to support us if buying our products is the only way someone feels they can.
“A brand…keeping track of orders for the purpose of encouraging people to buy LESS of their stuff? But that’s terrible for business and an insult to your biggest customers!?”
An understandable response. What would we say to it? Well firstly, we hear you! By today’s business dynamics it does sound ludicrous, and we certainly got some shocked responses when we initially put the feelers out on this idea! But we are rebels. We don’t adhere to today’s business dynamics for good reason - because we can see how they have led us to the current environmental and social justice atrocities faced by humanity.
We do NOT think badly of those who have bought a lot of our stuff – if you are maximising use and loving your items wholeheartedly (which we know you are) then this is absolutely fine. Our aim here is purely to keep people mindful of consumption and to take responsibility for the part that we play in it. Ultimately, this is a direct collaboration between brand and customer which has not been seen before. Accountability and responsibility are so blurred in the fashion industry, whereby nobody is sure who the problems we face are to be blamed on: Is it the consumers for providing demand? or the brands and manufacturers for providing goods to tempt purchase? People will debate on both sides of that argument until the coos come hame…
So this is us bridging that gap and deciding to work together with our customers instead. That’s all.
Love Clare and the team x