COMMUNITY BUILDING, Community Being.
Getting T|W Tote up and running was a labor of love and we bootstrapped it all the way. The idea of community ran through every aspect of our work. It’s a conscious choice for sure, but also, we just don’t know how to do it any other way. We started by thinking about people - who wants a tote like this? What kind of job do they do, what is their day like? What design delivers the luxury look while still being a lunch tote which can hold up to having lunch carried in it everyday? Then, we looked around at our community at home. Who is being represented in business in our community? Who can we include in our product’s journey?
From there, we built the tote within a community. From material suppliers, to photographers, to marketers, they are our community. Within that community, we have choices as to who we lift up. Being a minority-owned business, and a half female owned, we want to build community with other minority- and female- owned businesses. Helping suppliers that are underrepresented in business is integral to what we do.
Now we’re in a new moment, scaling up the business, which requires outside capital - applying for grants - and bringing in other resources to keep building our community larger and larger. Scary stuff for any business, but even scarier during the health crisis we’re in now.
In all this I think a great deal about our community, If you're reading this now you are part of that community. How are you handling the pandemic? What do you expect from your favorite companies? If you own a company, what are you doing during this time?
We’d love to hear from you!