Marrakech, Morocco — You did not receive an email from us announcing a Black Friday/Cyber Monday sale. Every year we get asked whether we are going have any holiday sales. At other times of the year we get asked why don't you ever have sales?
We offer a ten percent discount to people who sign up for our newsletter because we want to be able to stay in touch with our best customers and share updates and stories from the road. If you didn't receive the code when you signed up, or would like another opportunity, we have created the code RESIPSA2021 good for a ten percent discount on your total order through December 31, 2021.
But the question remains: why don't we have big sales like other brands?
Slow fashion: hand-woven small batch fabric and limited production.
The short answer to that question is that we operate on a very different model than the brands that offer steep holiday discounts. The longer answer is that brands who "go on sale" operate on a model where they manufacture large quantities of more-or-less identical products for a particular season, and then the product becomes obsolete if it doesn't sell. To avoid being saddled with enormous quantities of unsold inventory, these brands offer deep discounts to move product out the door quickly.
Images from a large-scale production facility we toured in Jiangsu, China
Many brands "contract manufacture" which means they pay a third party lowest-cost producer (typically in China or Southeast Asia) to make their goods, but those contract manufacturers typically have high minimums. The fashion industry creates 100 billion garments a year. The global population is 7.9 billion.
Because we operate our own atelier in Marrakech, we are able to make exactly what we need. We aspire to create high-quality items for consumers who want to buy fewer-but-better-quality items compared to the virtually disposable pieces being churned out by the industry.
A contract manufacturing facility in Jiangsu, China. Their production minimums require you to purchase thousands of units and tens of thousands of meters of fabric. Much of this will never be purchased by customers.
We aspire to be conscious consumers, which we define as thinking about what we buy, how it is made, and why it costs what it costs. One of our brand values is a commitment to zero waste. This means that we try to use dead stock fabrics (which means fabric that is unused but no longer in production) that can be bought without minimums, repurposing vintage raw materials, and making things in small batches.
Three of our Res Ipsa atelier team members. We believe makers of well-made products deserve to make a fair profit & living wage.
Because we only make small batches and limited quantities, we never have a backlog of product that we are desperate to sell quickly. The big brand, fast(er) fashion model generates tremendous amounts of waste: unused fabrics, unsold goods, and exploitative wages. As the saying goes: there is a high cost to low-cost goods.
As we begin to be more informed about our choices, we see the value in what we purchase even if that item was not "on sale" when the world is bargain hunting for the holiday season.
We're grateful for our tribe of loyal customers who appreciate what we do and how we do it.