I visited a factory today. I love going to factories and seeing how things are made. I love seeing old buildings and dirty machinery and businesses stripped of anything superficial or glamorous. A good factory gets s*** done with a MacGyver-like efficiency between resources, effort and results. This was one of those factories.
Everyone I know likes to tell me that their grandmother can sew but what they get done and how they get it done in garment factories is nothing like granny’s home sewing. Factories certainly don’t have the best reputations (particularly in the fashion industry) but I still get nostalgic about the history, how hard people work, and about a dying trade that we are forgetting so quickly.
The DIY trend, sustainability efforts, demands for transparency in business practices, and the crafts movement are beginning to bring more humanity to what we’ve been detached from for so long. We want to know more about the products we love. We want to know how they’re made, where they’re made, and what processes are used to make them. We also want to know who makes them. In this case, it’s a family that moved here 30 years ago from China. They like to practice their English. They like to work hard. And most of all, they like to share their dim sum.