. . . for Lauren and Lauren: an idea to support

November 23, 2013

an idea to support

For most years when shopping for Christmas presents or really just presents for anything, I bought most of my gifts at Target, Old Navy or a similar store.  Now I do love those stores (a lot); however, I've started buying more and more things on groopdealz, etsy and other online boutique like stores.  

One of the reasons I do so, is because I truly love buying handmade items.  I love the idea of each one being different and also like personalized gifts.  I like supporting individuals who are working hard at something they love doing.  I was so interested and impressed when I read about this company, Rickshaw Bagworks, which is a unique company that runs out of  a small brick warehouse in an old industrial neighborhood in San Francisco. 


Their company prides itself on creating custom made bags, backpacks and totes that are handmade and leave behind no waste.   For example, this messenger bag is named Zero after the amount of waste generated during the production of creating it.  Like all of their products, Rickshaw Bags aims to make everything they produce meet their three f's as they call it: form, function and footprint.  Their goal is to make "high-quality products for long-term, everyday use." 
I found it quite impressive when I read that each bag is designed in a way that lets them use every part of the fabric that they cut.  While no seamstress myself, I know I waste quite a bit of fabric when I make any kind of project and end up throwing it away.  It's neat that this company truly tries and succeeds at making ZERO waste, from not printing catalogs to minimizing their packaging.  

While minimum wage is $10.55 in San Fransisco, Rickshaw bags pays employees $20 an hour, which interestingly is 20 times the current labor rate in China and 100 times that in Bangladesh.  For this reason and many others, this is one of those companies that makes you want to support them.  And actually kind of makes me want to work for them too.  Especially after watching this video:

One of the neatest things about Rickshaw bags is that they strive to support local businesses and vendors for outside services, like screen printing and embroidery.  But instead of driving around transporting supplies, they visit vendors by bicycle.


If I'm being honest I sadly don't do a good job of "being green."  I fail to recycle most of our things and I rarely think about ways to help our environment.  But if I am being honest, this company and reading these articles inspires me to start trying better.  I want to support companies and people like this.

"Sustainability is a journey, not a destination. Once you embrace the fact that sustainable business practices save money, simplify operations, and build brand equity, you will continually seek new ways to embrace them. At the same time, you will be making things better for the environment and for future generations. After all, sustainable business is just good business."  Mark Dwight, founder of Rickshaw Bags


This is a sponsored post, however all opinions and views are my own. 


Simply LKJ said... Best Blogger TipsBest Blogger Templates

Thanks for sharing their company Katie. I too try to buy many of my gifts from companies right here in the states, and love the homemade aspect.

Cat said... Best Blogger TipsBest Blogger Templates

These companies are definitely the way forward! thanks for sharing x

Janna Renee said... Best Blogger TipsBest Blogger Templates

I always love a good cause like this! Those bags are pretty darn cool.