The Brief & Our Values
This project started out of a theology assignment on social transformation. We researched other charitable organisations that use sewing as a means of support. We wanted to develop a charitable business model where people from all over the world could be practically, economically and spiritually involved in the making and selling of dresses that honour, respect and embody the God given cultural mandate.
Below is a list of statements that would draw God and Kingdom principles into the project:
- the use of heritage rich fabrics and no trimmings that need importing, honouring local people (and enabling access to the project to all), reducing carbon miles and challenging the need for fashion trends and consumerism.
- using machinery resources available in remote areas (e.g. hand powered straight-stitch machines) honouring the poorest in the supply chain.
- making a one-size dress that will fit all women in all seasons of life (including maternity and nursing), throughout their life. This reduces the need for large stock volumes which make setting up a business prohibitive to people on low incomes. It also simplifies manufacturing processes, reduces the likelihood of errors, dead stock and therefore cost and waste. The dress has a diverse audience and selling online is simpler. Boutiques are often small with limited display space: with only one-size of dress there is less likelihood of dead size stock and more opportunity to display colour or fabric variations.
- a financial remuneration system that honours everyone involved whilst providing generosity for the poor. Producers of dresses made in the west are remunerated with a fair return. When producers in poorer countries sell in their own locality, dresses are sold at appropriate prices. However, when they export their dresses to the west, we use western retail prices in order to provide a greater return for their benefit.
- is a sustainable business model that respects appropriate secular profit margins so the product can be a prophetic statement to the global fashion industry.
- we source fabric as respectfully as we can:
- as locally as possible;
- using fair trade producers where we can, and if not from producers with ethical values;
- with organic creditials if we can within the budgets our transparent pricing policy permits
- we also purchase waste fabric from end of factory lines as an alternative sustainable option.
- allows for skills training through visuals and training aids, without the need for written text. This easily crosses language barriers and provides training that demonstrates investment in others.
- engaging people as equals from all over the world, demonstrating care and love for all.
- to create a prayer network which supports everyone involved.
- to tell the story behind the dress and how the product embodies this cultural mandate.