Oppi is about people. People and their creative stories. It emerged from my own story, and has since become entwined with the stories of others, making my own biography all the richer.
Much of my own narrative speaks of how creativity energises me and gives me a sense of life. And I’ve come to believe that creativity and life-giving are in fact intrinsically linked. You cannot have life without first a creation. I think of the awesome intricacy of a newborn baby; every tiny detail makes up a life, beautifully created.
It’s always been important to me to weave into Oppi the opportunities to give life to others. Be that through giving finance to help children in Mozambique, offering time to new mums who want to chat about having a newborn, or consideration about where I source fabrics. I want the story of Oppi to give life to others’ stories.
Choosing Oppi fabrics carefully
All the fabrics in Oppi babywear are natural, most are cotton. Much could be said about the ethics of using cotton in textiles, but I’ll save that for another blogpost. For every item of Oppi clothing, the fabric is either upcycled, or is organically produced and fairly-traded.
Our new organic, fairtrade and fairly-traded cotton
After quite the search for a reliable British supplier of ethical fabrics, I discovered a family firm in Wales who really care about people and fabric: Organic Textile Company
Their homepage says:
We don't advertise, we don't attend trade fairs but you found us! That's great - thanks for looking.
The statement made me laugh out loud - I had found them! And with that, I ordered every sample I could.
When these gorgeous squares of cloth arrived I squealed with excitement, pushed them into my handbag and took them with me to where I was meeting the girls for coffee. I simply had to show-and-tell! The designs and patterns were wonderful, the quality was excellent and what’s more they were all GOTS certified Organic and either fairly-traded, or certified Fairtrade.
So I went back to the website to make my order. I enjoyed reading about the relationship Phil and Ann Wheeler (company owners) have with the people who produce, manufacture and print these lovely fabrics. They tell the stories of the families they work with in developing countries. They share about the positive impact that manufacturing organic fabric has on them and their community, and the importance of paying them a fair wage.
On reading the stories I knew I had found a perfect supplier for Oppi babywear. I placed my order.
Some of the latest Oppi babyshoes have been made using fabric from the Organic Textile Company. They have been a delight to sew, and I look forward to packaging them up and sending them on their way for tiny toes to wear... and for the next bit of the creative story to be told.