Made in Britain

    My first blog.

I read blogs. Lots of them – too many, probably.

So when my website designer insisted I must have one, it filled me with dread. What can I possibly write about? I’m much too ‘British’ to write about my own business. Besides, I’m never too keen on reading others’ proclamations about how wonderful they/their products are.

Chewing nervously on the end of my pencil, and staring out of the window, it occurred to me how lucky we are here in Britain. The news tells us our economy is back on track, employment is rising again……but what strikes at my heart the most is that manufacturing is returning to our shores! I remember the slow decline, how it demoralised whole communities, the sadness of empty factories…..OK, so we must embrace new technologies…..go with it towards a stronger, healthy future. And we did. Not sure it worked – but, hey, hindsight is a wonderful thing!

As with every recession/depression/downturn, resourcefulness surfaces. It is that basic human survival instinct. But not only that. We are forced to re-examine our thought processes; what we took for granted has been taken away. What do we do? Well….we create! That’s what…..and millions of Brits are doing just that! There is an explosion of sheer talent (yes, yes, there always has been, I know) but this time round it’s a little different. Perhaps fuelled by our ‘website-blindness’ (you know, when everything looks…. well…. the same..), cloned shops on the High Street (if you’re lucky to have any), everyone dressed in throw-away items.

I think we are re-discovering our values. And designers and manufacturers are aware of our hunger for change and individuality. Like every big project, it is impossible to tackle it all at once. Bite-size pieces and all that. That is how blogs progress, isn’t it? So, I think I shall write, more or less, on a regular basis, about British small businesses, designers, manufacturers. A little European-ness will probably creep in (because aren’t there some amazing products out there?!), but essentially, linked to Britain.

The website Make it British is a great place to start. They are forging links within the fragmented circuit of companies who are quietly and determinedly making their products right here in Britain. You’ll find a list of British companies to explore and thought-provoking material.

Meanwhile I shall be investigating interesting stories for you. (Oh, and my business is entirely British!).

Patricia Smith Labels

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