Tuesday, May 1, 2007

It's Not About Guilt

Most clothing companies manufacture in third-world countries to achieve economies of scale. They entrust the production of identical items to low-overhead factories and their low-wage assembly lines. That's not the case here.

As noted in the International Herald Tribune, Sandy and Cliff set up shop in Mumbai in order to produce limited quantities with a higher level of craftsmanship.

Over the past few years, they’ve developed working relationships with a handful of relatively well-paid artisans. This allows their personal involvement in each step of the transformation of linear and monochromatic thread into something with hue and dimension.

Sandy can rework the contours of an awkward seam before dinner. Cliff can hover beside a pot of color at the dye shop, request an earthier gray, or a more essential blue.

I don’t argue that inequity is inevident, just that it doesn’t seem like my subject here. One afternoon in Mumbai, while I was walking alone and without destination, a white-robed itinerant raged towards me, and then past me, waving a stick at an adversary I could not see.

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