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Made in Portugal - Made in China would be easier!

Creating our Fanny Pack Bag out of Cactus leather

Last week, I traveled to the north of Portugal, where our handbag factory is based. For the past nine months, I have been striving to create our first product, now working with the third factory, yet constantly facing delays and setbacks. As a small brand with no network in fashion, starting things off has proven incredibly challenging.

Initially, the plan was to begin production before the summer break in August, but now it has been pushed to September. This constant shifting of timelines is incredibly frustrating, making me question my approach and decisions.

Is it really that difficult to create a timeless, elegant bag made from cactus leather? Many brands have already succeeded in this, and I have extensive production experience. However, most factories in Europe have never worked with cactus leather, making it challenging to source and utilize this material. Additionally, cultural and communication barriers, as well as shifting deadlines, complicate the process further.

In the past, I worked with many Chinese suppliers, where the working culture and responsibility to meet deadlines were vastly different. Producing the bag in China would undoubtedly be easier. However, I am committed to a local product. I want to keep the money in the country I live in and support Portugal's rich tradition in manufacturing shoes, fashion, and bags.


Reflecting on Portugal's Rich Fashion History

Portugal's fashion history is rich and diverse, reflecting the country's cultural, social, and economic transformations over centuries. Here is an overview of key periods and developments in Portuguese fashion:

Craftsmanship: Portugal has a long tradition of high-quality craftsmanship, particularly in textiles, embroidery, and leather goods.

Sustainability: In recent years, there has been a strong movement towards sustainable fashion, with many designers and brands focusing on eco-friendly materials and ethical production practices.

Cultural Heritage: Portuguese fashion often incorporates elements of its rich cultural heritage, from traditional patterns and techniques to modern interpretations of classic styles.

Portugal's fashion history reflects its dynamic cultural evolution and its ability to adapt and innovate while preserving its unique identity. This is why I am determined to create something here.

Let's hope everything goes well in the coming weeks, and we can get the first Coneli bag on its way to you by late September.


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