We held our first Make it British Forum this week – a gathering of businesses, students, lecturers and industry experts, to discuss the future of the UK textile industry and the wider issues surrounding buying British.
A straw poll was taken at the forum to ask how many of the attendees were wearing something that was made in Britain. Only half the audience put their hands up – and yet this is at an event where people are interested in supporting UK manufacturing.
Look around your house, look at your wardrobe and ask yourself the same question….
What do you own that is made in Britain?
Issues with the traceability of garment production in overseas factories is an ongoing concern. News stories such as the recent Panorama programme about Syrian refugee children working in Turkish factories only serves to highlight the human outcry to re-address our values.
Now more than ever we need a post-Brexit plan to rediscover our heritage, re-open our factories and invest in the future of UK manufacturing. We need to make it British and make it Great again!
You can play your part by actively seeking products made in Britain. Start with some of the businesses in our directory, and keep your eye out for our Christmas Gift Guide which is launching soon, which will help you Buy British this Christmas.
The Make it British Forum
Delegates and speakers at the Make it British Forum defined a clear agenda for the future of UK manufacturing – and you can all play your part.
Read the article to find out what happened at the show and what issues were addressed.
Kate Hills, founder of Make it British was interviewed by Lukwesa Burak – listen to the interview to find out why she was in Leicester, what buying British means, and why she launched Make it British six years ago.
LellieBag offer bespoke custom made leather bags and products made within Great Britain. You can choose from a selection of male and female designer bags, gifts and special limited editions. LellieBag is an expression of designer Lesley Shepperson’s passion to create beautiful timeless leather goods, with a contemporary yet personal twist, for clients requiring high quality bespoke products that have effortless style. The range includes handbags, man bags, satchels, iPad and tablet cases and small leather goods.
The Personal Barber specialises in premium, bespoke grooming kits for the quality savvy gentleman. Focusing on the benefits of using a single blade, their kits are designed to get you enjoying your daily routine by introducing exciting new brands, scents and unusual products. Their monthly subscription service was recently named one of the “8 best subscription boxes for men” by The Independent and they have been featured in numerous publications such as GQ, Men’s Health, Attitude and more.
The Throw Company has been established for 27 years and offers the world’s largest range of luxury Faux Fur products. Their vast ranges of homeware, fashion and giftware are lovingly designed and handmade in their UK studio. Every item they make has an added touch of magic as their machinists are superbly talented and creative – products are handmade with the foremost rule of quality over quantity!
Home – Beds Direct is a very well established, family owned manufacturer & direct retailer of all types of beds and associated products. They have many years experience in the manufacture and supply of beds and their vast range includes divans, mattresses, frames and furniture.
Leisure – Dizzy and Creative design and produce a range of high quality sewing and embroidery kits. All Dizzy and Creative kits use highest quality linen or linen/cotton UK sourced fabrics with threads from UK’s Appletons wools or DMC. Their step by step stitch guides are set clearly for both left and right handed stitchers.
Home – Pet Mirrors are a small family run business based in Leeds in the UK, with 32 years of experience of working in the plastics industry. Pet Mirrors, a part of parent company Industrial Plastic Supplies Ltd, was successfully launched one year ago making mirrors in your choice of breed/colour.
Women’s Accessories – NONAMUis a London-based accessories label founded by award-winning Malaysian designer. She infuses femininity and fun into every design details. The brand aims to create a story of the quintessential fusion between the tradition she grew up with, and modern lifestyle. Made with care and exceptional quality, Nonamu represents luxury.
Kid’s Accessories –Lootybag is a Shropshire based family company specialising in handmade swimming bags, PE Bags, wash bags, toy sacks and fabric party and gift bags for children and adults. Lootybag also provide a personalisation service using embroidered cotton thread for the names or messages on products.
Stationary – In a world driven by technology you might think that old-fashioned fountain pens had been left behind in the 20th century. Far from it! Bespoke British Pens have a growing list of fountain pen enthusiasts and collectors from all over the world who love the very Britishness of luxury fountain pens.
Kate gives her thoughts on the rise of UK textile manufacturing and what the challenges are to further growth. Plus she gives her tops tips for what factories need to do to attract young people into the industry.
“Young people want decent coffee machines and ping pong at lunch time. That would attract more people into the industry!”
Tea Green tassels are now being stocked in Fortnum and Mason. The tassels that they have been producing lately caught the eye of the famous store and they asked Frances to work on a project developing tassels for their London Piccadilly store. They are all handmade in Somerset and similar tassels will be available to buy online at Tea Green as well!
Want to get in touch?
We’re open to ideas abut articles for the blog, collaborations and contributions.