Saturday, May 17, 2008

The future is craftsmanship

In a world that is full of mass production everyone can buy a range of products in the rush to “keep up with the Joneses”. Mass production techniques produce identical items to exacting standards to ensure all have the same quality.

Some products are modularised to allow for some individuality and to customise commodities. In other words design your own products with company produced parts. For example Dell Computers allows people to design their own computer online and have it delivered in 3 weeks or a menu at a restaurant allows the making of a meal from a list of items.

Increasingly we are seeing the emergence of new and young designers. Fashion, clothing, jewellery, gardens, cars, technology, bicycles and house hold items. But are people really getting something personal to match their personality, ideas, expression and creativity. Unfortunately young designers are setting out to do the same thing as their predecessors. Design good stuff and have it mass produced and sold all round the world as a commodity.

There is of course an increasing trend to “Buy Local” as this is better for the environment and helps achieve sustainability. The increasing price of fuel is pushing up the price of goods as well as manufacturing and delivery prices. Further pressure will come on products as people start calculating carbon miles.

With the increasing need of the consumer to be more individual, to be carbon neutral, to express personality and to contribute to a sustainable future people will look for new and interesting local products made by excellent local craftspeople. The concept of handmade will become increasingly fashionable.

With high class equipment available at reasonable prices, locally produced handmade bespoke products do not have to be inferior but rather superior. They may be cheaper or more expensive than mass produced products depending upon the quality of the materials being used and the quality of the finish required.

High quality, creative, handmade products locally produced will generate great sales. In addition the sales marketing power of the internet can take great local products to the world at less cost than traditional retail methods.

Expect to see creative, high quality, hand made, bespoke products locally produced gracing the lives of people throughout the world while having a low environmental impact.

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