Maybe it's just us, but it seems the tide may finally be turning on the awareness of shopping local. Four years ago American Express began Shop Small Saturday. They were one of the first large institutions to go big with the idea of small, in calling attention to the benefit of shopping at locally-owned small businesses. The concept has grown beyond their initial push, with the neighborhood turning out in large numbers today in support of local businesses.
Make Good has championed the benefits of shopping local, taking the idea of local living systems further than most by sourcing 100% of our products locally. Today San Diego Council Member and mayoral candidate David Alvarez did some of his holiday shopping at Make Good, then this evening NBC San Diego ran a story on the power of local shopping, along with citing Make Good in their article on the benefits of shopping local.
Three and a half years into this labor of love called Make Good, it's heartening to see how more people are beginning to embrace how shopping local helps the local economy, and therby the community, in ways few other things can.
... with proper nods to our locally sourced items and cool stuff for the gents. You can read it all here.
A lot of folks are realizing the power of shopping local. From the benefits of knowing who you're buying from, where, and how those products are made, to the significant economic benefits of shopping local, the local movement is gaining momentum. The benefits for local communities are well documented.
For example, national retail chains typically keep only about 14% of the revenue they generate in the local economy (1). The vast majority of the money spent at these types of stores leaves the local community.
A typical locally-owned retail business keeps 48% of its revenue in the local economy (1). This means that when you spend your money at a locally-owned business, over three-and-a-half times more revenue stays in the neighborhood (compared to buying from a national chain), which in turn benefits the local economy in a variety of ways. For those who both live and shop in the same locale, this is especially good news.
At Make Good, the concept of local business is important to us, but we take the idea local quite a bit further than a typical local retailer, in that all (that's 100%) of the products we sell are locally sourced. That means that a far greater percentage of the revenue Make Good generates stays in the local economy (about 75%), when compared to the typical locally-owned retail business (and especially compared to a national chain retailer). This is a more difficult way of doing business, but it's one we care deeply about. Everything at Make Good is locally sourced, so our customers have the opportunity to know who makes the products we sell and how they're made. And since we both live and work in the neighborhood, the benefit of this model is palatable for us.
Even so, while we think highly of our local San Diego/Tijuana artisans, we're not provincial. We know there's lots of great artisans and makers all over the world (we know many of them and love their work). One of the unique contributions we hope to make to San Diego though, is helping raise awareness of the power of buying locally, of supporting local makers and creators. The awareness of the many benefits of sustainable, local living systems is growing. In case you haven't already seen it, a great summary on what this looks like can be had by watching The Story of Stuff.
For us at Make Good, this is a more difficult path to take as a business, but we think it's a good path. We hope you think so too.
(1) Compiled results form 9 studies by Civic Economics, 2012.
This Saturday, November 30th is Small Business Saturday at Make Good. Started by American Express as a way to encourage awareness and support of small, local businesses, Small Business Saturday embraces many of the values we hold dear at Make Good. Hope to see you then!
This Friday, November 29th, we're teaming up with next-door-neighbors Bad Madge & Junc and kicking' off the season right with drinks and shopping! The perfect way to ease out of your turkey slumber, stop by Make Good between 2:00pm and 4:00pm and join us for some tasty drinks and refreshments. Shannon will be modeling our designer resale clothing, and we'll be offering a brief, 2-hour storewide sale of 20% off*. Hope to see you there!
*For those that know how we work at Make Good, many of our products are consigned by our artisans. Sale prices mean that the owners at Make Good discount their share, but artists still get their full portion (not discounted). It's another great way you and the owners at Make Good can support the local artisans of San Diego and Tijuana.
We've got handcrafted holiday cards by Triona & Brianna, the girls from Columbus and TuTu and Alissa. We've got some cool handmade softies by Lizette and Valerie, and amazing hand-cut glassware by Kim & Maria, made from recycled craft beer bottles. And for the wine-drinkers in your life, check out the wine-stoppers made from reclaimed wood by David Atchison. This, and much more, now in store at Make Good. Stop in and say hello!
This weekend Make Good features great deals on our designer and top label resale clothing and jewelry. Become a loyalty card holder (it's free), and for every resale clothing item you buy, get two punches on your loyalty card. Ten punches and your next resale clothing item is free! In addition, for every resale clothing item you buy, get one item of jewelry for 25% off. It only lasts through Sunday, so make it happen peeps!
Handcrafted wallets made from high quality leather... Bottle openers hand-turned from locally sourced surplus hardwood... Glassware hand-cut from beer bottles, sourced (of course) from local bars. Make Good has that and more, including a wide selection of men's t-shirts, men's jewelry and accessories. If you're looking for that perfect, locally handcrafted gift for your man (or dudes, for yourself), stop in and say hello. We'll hook you up.
Four times a year, our neighborhood throws a party. Much of San Diego is familiar with Walkabout, an evening where local businesses open up their doors late into the evening, and the neighborhood comes out to enjoy music, food and getting to know their neighbors. The winter's Walkabout, themed "Lumnaria," will be on December 7th from 6-10pm. Hope to see you there!
News about Make Good
A blog about what's happening in and around Make Good, the art/handmade scene in San Diego and Tijuana, local artisans, and occasionally other things we care about.