Buy Jamaican at the Kingston Creative Artisan Store


Buy Jamaican at the Kingston Creative Artisan Store


Monday, October 26, 2020

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Many shoppers are increasingly becoming socially conscious and interested in the provenance of goods. The terms “artisan”, “small-batch”, “hand-crafted” are almost currency, as goods with those monikers can fetch higher prices. The Kingston Creative Artisan Store located on street level at the UDC Building at 12 Ocean Boulevard is making it possible for local artisans to seize their slice of the proverbial pie.

On Friday, October 23, as a part of #designweekja2020, the store hosted a virtual showcase. Two of the designers who are members of the shop's artisan collective — Charl Baker and Romi Toyloy — discussed the importance of buying Jamaican with Design Week conceptualiser Novia McDonald-Whyte.

In an age where goods purchased on are as ubiquitous as loose marl on Jamaican roads after constant rain, it's difficult for local designers who pride quality over being common to compete effectively.

The Kingston Creative Artisan store runs on a zero-commission model, so the full cost of the items go directly to the designers and artists. Some of the artisans whose wares can be found in-store include Zion Legacy, Nefer Shimona, Abb'z Made, Romi, charlB, Ekleltik, and ChelleMac. To celebrate#designweekJA2020, the artisans mentioned above are offering discounts on purchases.

Fun fact: Money spent at local businesses stays in the local economy longer. Local small business owners will spend that money at other local businesses more so if they are within the same community. The members of the Kingston Creative Artisan Store's collective seem to be faring better than other artisans, mainly due to the supportive ecosystem of which they are a part. When asked how creatives can financially recover during the pandemic, Toyloy exclaimed: “Talk to each other!” Not only is there strength in numbers, but sharing resources can quickly solve a problem that one member could have seen as impossible.

Small local businesses provide economic resiliency, especially if they are rooted in the community. Even during recessions, their efforts are not halted to the same extent as large companies. Currently, there is a mammoth growth of large corporations and billionaire tech execs whose pockets are lined by faceless buyers across the globe. Buying Jamaican is not only a political act, but a civic exercise, and economic benefits go directly to strengthening the roots and preserving this island for future generations.

#designweekja 2020 is made possible with the support of the National Housing Trust, National Commercial Bank, ARC Manufacturing Limited, and H&L Rapid True Value.

Join the #Oteam today, Monday, October 26 @ Lavagne Limited @12:00 noon and Tuesday, October 27 @ Home and Things @10:00 am

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