Recently, we were accredited to the Made In Britain organisation as part of their drive to increase exposure to British manufacturers.
Historically, there's been plenty of manufacturing in Britain. Here in the North, the coal and steel industries thrived, supporting ship building across the British Isles. Here in Leeds, and across West Yorkshire, textile mills wove fabric to be sent all over the world.
Nowadays, the landscape has changed. Right now, we're in an old mill, converted from its days as a textile powerhouse into the design firm it now is. Next door we have a joiners. Downstairs is an art studio. Though the landscape has changed, we're still making things here.
Though compared to steel work and shipbuilding our industry might not seem like typical manufacturing, we try to make as much as we can ourselves and source as much as we can from domestic suppliers. We also try to hire as locally as we can. Leeds has seen a great boost in its economy over the past few years but, with most of the stores and large businesses here being headquartered in London, a lot of that prosperity flows back to the capital after being generated here. We're trying to make a difference in our local area.
What's more, we're doing everything we can to keep our production within the UK and by doing so, we aren't exploiting anybody in terrible working conditions, most likely being underpaid and underappreciated, possibly worse. Many companies will have exploitative work conditions to keep their costs down. We don't want to be a part of that and when you buy from us, you support that approach too.
It would be easier to outsource our manufacturing. We could sit back with clean, soft hands and watch stock come in and stock go out while we relax and rust in our chairs. But instead, we choose the hard thing: the countless cuts and burns, the callouses on our hands and fingers, the soreness of our arms and backs after a day's work. Washing the wax from polishing steel and searing our skin with acetone is all part of making each piece of work shine.
Tea helps. As does coffee.
It's important to us to make things. There's the personal satisfaction of a job well done but moreover, knowing that what you've made will, hopefully, make someone else happy.
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