How we create our products mindfully
Our philosophy is simple: Make eco-friendly products for today’s well-informed consumer without compromising on style and functionality.
Most business gurus advise entrepreneurs to create a product to fill a void, but Founder/designer Shivangi Parikh starts with the materials available around her and then visualizes the end use, even if the product type already exists. Of course, the idea is followed by market research, but the primary aim is to make a more sustainable, eco-friendly alternative to an everyday object. Main criteria include:
- Is the material eco-friendly and how was it produced?
We use jute or burlap for our best-selling yoga bags because it is bio-degradable, durable, and produced locally in my home country of India, which is also where our jute items are made.
Khadi or hand spun cotton is made by spinning the ‘charkha’ or wheel, and is produced in small villages and towns across India, creating a sustainable local economy. It is strong and looks just like linen - the patterns and lines are organic and simple - but it is more reasonably priced, which allows us to offer our totes and clutches at a competitive price point. More on Khadi here.
- Can this material be re-used and upcycled instead of just discarding it?
This is actually the starting point for Shivam Creations: having little to no use of her gorgeous Indian saris, dresses and other fabrics, Shivangi started experimenting with turning them into yoga mat bags. Not all saris could hold the weight of a yoga mat, so once she figured which ones would be suitable, Shivangi reached out to family members who would donate their old saris and dresses. This way the traditional motifs and patterns would continue to spread their beauty in the world, instead of ending up in a landfill.
- Is there an organic alternative available that is reasonable for most people?
Since yoga was the foundation for starting this venture, we try to be mindful about the resources used. When Shivangi was first commissioned with making lavender eye pillows for a yoga studio where she taught restorative yoga, she knew she wanted to use only organic ingredients as fillers because students will place these on their eyes and inhale its aroma and properties. After much research, she learnt that organic lavender provided the most soothing effect and long lasting natural fragrance. Also the entire point of using these pillows for relaxation and reducing stress, insomnia and headaches is lost if there are artificial ingredients and fragrance.
- Can we source local resources?
We strive to keep as much of our production local as possible. We started with learning how to sew to be able to make the bags ourselves. As business grew, we hired a local seamstress even though it cut into our margins initially. We use local printers for all our printing needs such as marketing supplies and stationery. We use local photographers and business resources.