by micha thomas
Over at Camille Styles today, one of our absolute favorite blogs, we shared 15 of our favorite American-made items for your consideration this gift giving season and well beyond. We also talked about the challenge we posed to ourselves when starting MiA and why we keep going. Following is the main excerpt and link to the original story:
Camille Styles editor’s note: We’ve been talking a lot around the office lately about our increasing desire to consider where we’re spending our money and who it’s supporting. During this season of intense consumerism, we thought it would be a great opportunity to take a look at how we can spend our money for good, supporting the companies and issues we care about. Here to guide us today is Micha, co-founder of the MiA project. We asked her to share the inspiration behind her incredible online store, as well as the 15 American-made gifts on her list to give and receive this year. Take it away Micha!
It’s easy to feel powerless amidst an epidemic. It’s easy to think there will never be another day when fast fashion and throwaway items aren’t the majority. But when I started The MiA (Made in America) Project, I wasn’t looking for easy. I was looking for a way to alter the tides of consumption, even if it was a few people and a few habits at a time. Prior to The MiA Project, I worked with large and small companies leading marketing and creative development, so I knew my vision for MiA was not simple. While I’d never started my own company, I’d worked as a consultant for years, and I’d worked with some of the brightest, change-focused entrepreneurs out there. Helping resurrect American manufacturing, elevating American designers, and playing a part in a global consumption shift towards sustainability wasn’t exactly a fun idea, it was an ambitious one.
The MiA Project is now one of the most robust and also attentively-selected made-in-America marketplaces and platforms on the web, featuring designers and makers from around the country. We create experiences surrounding made-in-America themes through storytelling, community events, a Badge of Honor, and now brick and mortar stores.
Consumption in its many forms skyrockets during the holidays. Of course you know that! This isn’t a bad thing; it’s an opportunity. The money you spend and the gifts you give makes you a powerhouse, and you probably don’t realize it! Your purchases catalyze some of the most important issues on the planet: human rights and labor laws, sustainability, job creation or elimination, and preservation or degradation of materials. With a swipe of a card or an exchange of a bill, you send a signal of support to the people or company behind the purchase, the issues behind the purchase, and so much more. So perhaps allocate some of your holiday spends this season to independent stores, to artisans, to American-made, to local, wherever you live.