The other week I was writing an article about having an 'ethical' Christmas and it really got me thinking. Now is the time (as much as you all pretend to hate it, Christmas is just over a month away and you need to get over it) to start to give some thought to how you are going to gift-give this year. The sooner you start to think this through, the less likely you are to spend money on daft things that have no meaning to the person receiving. A great way to be a more conscious consumer at this time of the year is to think about supporting a small business in a society where biggest seems best. You'll have seen that from time to time I post interviews on this blog where you can 'Meet the Maker' to try and give some spotlight to the talent and determination of independent artists and creators. I really believe in doing this as an act of protest, even - a way of sticking two fingers up to the endless catalogues and mass advertising from big tax-avoiding companies, many of whom don't even pay their workers a living wage (after having a little cry at the sentiment of this years John Lewis ad, I was gobsmacked to know they spent £7 million on the advert AND they don't pay their workers a living wage). Our money talks and where it goes tells us what is important to us.
You see, being a small business is pretty tough these days. The competition is fierce, and we - the consumers - are all too distracted with cheaper, quicker, easily accessed versions of things. Creators and small business owners have to really work hard to maintain their integrity, their passion and their craft. I so admire that grit and think that when we can, we should seek out the makers and the local sellers and push them to the fore. We cannot afford to dampen down the light of the makers and creators amongst us. They bring so much vibrancy to our communities.
That's why I am more than excited to share with you an exciting little collaboration I have put together for you all in the run up to Christmas. I want you to meet some of the lovely people I've engaged with through small indie businesses and give you a peek into their world.
Over the next 5 weeks, well in time for Christmas, I will be posting some great interviews with amazing individuals who are fighting and thriving and keeping their passions alive. Not only that, but each of these indie businesses have offered to give away some of their products to YOU! Aren't they amazing and generous?
I want you to hear from the people behind the brands and shops, to understand that your custom and your support means so much, and to see that what they have to offer goes above and beyond in quality and heart than what you could find in any of the multi-nationals we so often resort to out of convenience. So, I'll be here, every week, banging the drum of the indie businesses and heralding in the Christmas cheer!
Stay tuned for the first in the series coming up tomorrow...