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2021 Consumers are Gravitating to Sustainable, Slow, Small and US Made.

Posted by Paula Parisotto on

When I decided to #getcorky, sustainability wasn't even on my list of why's for starting a cork accessory business. After all, I'm a designer! My creative eye saw its unique appeal, gorgeous patina, and cork's ability to turn heads. Even so, sustainability is one of the things I have grown to be proud of when it comes to my cork accessory line. If you've been around a while, you know I've talked about it more than once! But there are many characteristics of my brand that make my company what it is, and each of them delights me in its own way. Paula Parisotto is a sustainable, slow fashion, small business with a unique US-made product, and hot damn! I love what I do!


2021 Consumers are Gravitating to Sustainable, Slow, Small and US Made.

Sustainability was a bit of a happy accident turned developing interest. I fell in love with cork because I saw people's reaction to it was similar to mine - this material is really cool! Really unique! Who knew cork was good for more than keeping champagne bubbly?

As I researched the best quality cork for crafting my first purse, I learned just how unique it actually was! Cork oaks can be harvested every nine to ten years after reaching maturity - this means in a tree's average 200-year life span, it can be safely gathered 16-20 times over its lifespan. Isn't that incredible? It's also naturally antimicrobial, washable with soap and water, and only gets softer and more supple over time!

Sustainable materials (and really, sustainable lifestyles in general) have become more mainstream in recent years. People recognize the need to take better care of Mother Earth and understand that investing in sustainable products has a long-term positive impact on our environment. Sustainability means less waste in the landfills and better production practices - which in turn means better air quality, water, protection of our wildlife. It's a win-win for everyone, am I right?

Going hand in hand with sustainability is the slow fashion movement. At its core, it is a commitment from both the consumer and the fabricator to respect our planet. For the consumer, it is the practice of buying fewer but better quality items. For fabricators, slow fashion puts into practice using sustainable materials in production, packaging, fabricating in smaller batches, and focusing on quality pieces made to last. Another helpful method is for fabricators to slow their production schedules. This means not focusing on trends but instead on styles that will remain fashionable for long periods.

When brands like mine choose sustainable, slow practices wherever possible, we better protect the planet for future generations! And when consumers prefer to shop from brands like mine, it encourages us all to keep our commitment to preserving the environment! It's true what they say, "When you shop small businesses, the owner does a happy

Luckily for me (and all the other small, slow fashion companies out there), more and more shoppers gravitate toward unique products made from sustainable materials. Unique has its own buzz in the design industry as consumers look for products made from unique materials, have a unique design, are created by unique companies, or come from a unique place. So while the movement for sustainable and slow fashion feels small and well....unique...my fingers are crossed that it will soon become the norm as interest continues to grow!

Speaking of unique places, US-made consumerism is on the rise! While the US isn't really unique, a recent focus on US-made is! In the 1960s, overseas production became a popular choice for many fabrication companies. The US population wasn't concerned about where companies produced their products as long as they could still get what they wanted. Unfortunately, that hurt the US economy! Thankfully the zeitgeist of today is shifting, and many Americans are making US-made product purchases a priority. This is great for our economy and helps leave a smaller environmental footprint as it cuts down unnecessary shipping and transport!

I always say that I didn't choose the Corky Life; the Corky Life chose me...and I am so glad it did! Because of this journey, I have discovered new ways to change the world and met other wonderful people working hard to do the same. If sustainable, slow fashion from a small business made in the USA can do it, so can you!






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