‘grown-to-sewn’ in the usa.

January 21, 2010

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behold, alabama chanin. faythe and merrilee introduced me to natalie ‘alabama’ chanin’s work last week, and i could not be more smitten. alabama chanin is ‘a lifestyle company that focuses on creating an array of products through focusing on slow design and sustainability.’ like the slow food movement, alabama chanin seeks to use local ‘ingredients’ and to employ local workers.
 
work in their northern alabama factory is carried out by thirty skilled local artisans. ranging in age from 25 to 80, these men and women hand sew every garment the company makes. before the passing of NAFTA, many of these same artisans were employed in local textile mills that gave the region the nickname, “t-shirt capital of the world.” today, alabama chanin strives to nurture local traditions: “we sew by hand not because we don’t approve of technology, but we because we choose to preserve these living arts.”
 
i told you i was smitten.
 
the website explains that their “philosophy centers on the celebration and preservation of uniquely American traditions while building a sustainable business model.” toward this end, not only does alabama chanin offer up gorgeous hand-sewn goods, they also offer workshops hosted at their alabama headquarters. if you haven’t stopped reading already, head to their website, and take a look for yourself.
 
p.s. there is even a video of four girls strumming on folk instruments and singing. heaven on earth.
 
all photos from the alabama chanin website.

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15 Comments

  • Reply The Yellow Door Paperie January 21, 2010 at 8:14 pm

    Beautiful. I found them within the month and I just kept looking at the workshops wondering if there was a way I could swing it to get to one of them.

    But alas, I'll just have to keep spying…

  • Reply janis January 21, 2010 at 8:18 pm

    I can't wait to follow this link, thank you so much for sharing this! The hand stitching is blowing my mind :^0 !

  • Reply Denise | Chez Danisse January 21, 2010 at 8:47 pm

    I'm really struck by:

    "We sew by hand not because we don't approve of technology, but we because we choose to preserve these living arts."

  • Reply knack January 21, 2010 at 9:20 pm

    I'm "amening" everything you wrote…..love this company for their slow movement and design…..and just the way they run things is very inspiring. Every time I get a worked up about not being able to produce in mass quantities or when such and such designer needs me too…..I read things like this and am reminded that slow…….is very good:)

    Thanks friend!

    xo

  • Reply ctquiltz January 21, 2010 at 9:33 pm

    WOW!!

  • Reply Liane January 21, 2010 at 10:04 pm

    erin! you totally have my number. i will for sure check this out.

  • Reply Prêt à Voyager January 21, 2010 at 10:59 pm

    hi erin! you have me so ready to move to belleville now! anyway, love your blog and all the handmade touches. great navigation too 🙂

    cheers!
    anne

  • Reply doebmom January 21, 2010 at 11:38 pm

    Four girls singing..for sure, no doubt…my heaven on earth

  • Reply Beth January 22, 2010 at 2:23 am

    Love this. Just saw the red coat! ::jaw drops::

  • Reply ~Mary January 22, 2010 at 4:14 am

    Wow! That is some amazing sewing. Thanks for sharing that site. Its nice to know that something is actually made in this country! Lol. Very inspiring.

  • Reply vintage simple January 22, 2010 at 2:08 pm

    Oh, Erin – just beautiful..! I love it all…

    xo,
    -maria

    ps: will be sending a little envelope your way later today.

  • Reply Michelle Shopped January 22, 2010 at 2:59 pm

    natalie had a great blog too — not sure if she still does — this reminds me to check to see if her new book's out yet…

  • Reply abigail January 23, 2010 at 9:00 pm

    I love their work and have made a few projects from their book.
    Every time I wear one I get tons of compliments.

  • Reply Lucia January 24, 2010 at 1:01 pm

    I love your blog, you always give me good ideas !!! so…. thank you, thank you and thank you!!!!!!!
    I invite you to visit this website http://www.mintmelon.com It´s a special spanish fashion brand, I think you'll like it, they send all around the world. It´ll be a great experience for you.

  • Leave a Reply to Lucia Cancel Reply

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