Good Earth ~ A Celebration of Craft & Craftsmanship.

Good Earth

In the wake of Etsy’s most recent move to go public and become just another money making machine (for a few), one company is standing up for all those values that Etsy once believed in.

 

After seeing this video from Good Earth, my idea of what constitutes handmade has been challenged.   

I was totally mesmerized by their quilt making process.  In most Westernised parts of the world we are happy to put the ‘Handmade’ tag on anything we feel we have created from ‘scratch’.  In other word something we have designed and/or put together ourselves, usually of commercially manufactures parts and materials.  Good Earth takes this several steps further, especially with their Bed and Bath ranges.

good earth4The quilts at Good Earth aren’t  just made by hand (with some machine stitching), the designs that appear on the quilts (and other home products) are designed and painted by hand.  Wooden blocks of these designs are then hand carved using traditional methods and used to hand print the natural fabrics with natural dyes.  Many having multiple stamps for each pattern repeat and motif.

I think what fascinated me the most with this part of the process, apart from the fine detail of the designs, was the speed and accuracy of the stamping process.

Another part of the creation of these beautiful quilts I was fascinated with was the filling good earth5process.  Instead of using a batting manufactured in a factory, they use a traditional fluffing technique which leaves a downy layer of cotton on top of the fabric.  This is carefully and skilfully roll up with the quilt fabric, then flipped with the quilt fabric to the right side and gently unroll, keeping the layer of cotton in place between the top and backing (which is just as beautiful as the top), ready for hand stitching.

Fergana Bagh Muslin Quilt

The Story of Good Earth

Anita Lal

Good Earth was founded in 1996 by Anita Lal, starting with one store in Kemps Corner, Mumbi.

As the creative director, Anita’s vision for her business was a simply one – style and luxury.

“True luxury is in the details of everyday living; it is being surrounded by things that are natural and hand-crafted with designs that elevate the spirit.”

 Today, Good Earth is ran by Anita’s daughter, Simran Lal, a graduate of FIT New Yorkgood earth9 and employs 300 people.  Their designs are a celebration of the heritage of Indian sub-culture and surrounding areas across Asia but with a contemporary feel.  They draw inspiration from the traditional roots of their culture with rich colours and imagery.

 Good Earth values 

Good Earth employee hand stitching a quilt.

Good Earth’s core values are of sustainability as well as sustaining traditions and the ecology.

“… encouraging quality craftsmanship and the revival of lost Indian traditions that are beneficial to the environment and the society is what we consistently work towards. …”

What’s more surprising is the price of these quilts.  The one picture above can be bought for $135 to $230 USD (depending on size).  But when you compare the minimum wages in India, it’s little wonder they can do this.  In Australia our minimum wage works out to $128 per day compared to India’s which ranges from $2.41 to $20.42 AUD per day (depending on district).

After watching this video, sewing with commercially made fabrics, no matter how pretty, or soft and cuddly have somehow lost their shine.  Now I feel I want to learn how to hand print my own fabrics and start creating pieces that are more Artisan — perhaps not today though ;) For now I think I’ll stick to designing soft toy patterns.  But one day, I may look at this again :)

Until next time …

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Good Earth Quilts

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Introducing: A Glossary Of Sewing Terms & Tools.

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The rise of the Handmade industry has swung the doors of the cottage and craft business wide open resulting in innumerable home based business  raining down on us through the internet like pixy dust — all pretty and shiny and mesmerizing. Crafty … Continue reading

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Tutorial: Sewing With Ease.

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Today I am sharing some tricks I’ve learnt over the years when it come to sewing with ‘Ease’ .  So, what is ‘ease’? … Put simply, ease is a small extra amount added to the measurement of a pattern.    In … Continue reading

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#Art_Chain Challenge: A Glimpse Of Some Other Creative Adventures

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The other week I was nominated by Jenny  from Fluffmonger to take part in the 5 day Art Chain challenge that has been doing the rounds on Facebook.  Although I thought this sounded like fun, I didn’t think I had the time to take … Continue reading

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Review: PicMonkey – Online Photo Editing Program, Plus a Short Tutorial.

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I have been using PicMonkey for about two and a half years now to edit ALL my photos, so I thought it was time to write a review about this amazing program. Essentially PicMonkey is an online photo editing program, but … Continue reading

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The 2015 EU VAT Tax & Why I Can No Longer Sell To Customers In The EU …

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 Important update: Thanks to Etsy changing their minds regarding collecting and remitting the new EU VAT, all my patterns on Etsy are again available as instant downloads and available to everyone — including all you fine and lovely folks in … Continue reading

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Goodbye 2014, you were full of adventure and change.

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At the close of each year we always seem to want to take one last look back at what we have done with the last twelve months. For me, this year has really focused on two things, fine tuning what … Continue reading

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Christmas Craft Ideas: — My Top 8 Picks.

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Christmas is fast approaching … again, and we are all thinking about Christmas themed crafts.   A few weeks ago I started a new board on Pinterest to gather some Christmas craft ideas — and there are plenty of them … Continue reading

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New Sewing e-Pattern — ‘Bowling Pin & Ball’

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It’s usually hot in most parts of Australia at Christmas time, some times too hot to play out doors for much of the day. As a parent you are always looking for games and activities to keep younglings occupied without causing too much destruction to the home.
With a set of fabric bowling pins and a fabric ball, you can turn your hallway into your very own bowing ally — and best of all — no stinky bowling shoe ;) Continue reading

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Project 5 ~ A Bunny, Footpads & Shoes: (Stuffed Animals – From Concept To Construction ~ part 6)

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In Project 5 from Abby Glassenberg’s book ‘Stuffed Animals ..’ I make an adorable bunny and learn about drafting footpads and shoes for soft toys. Then Bronnie the Dinosaur gets her own footpads … but no shoes. — maybe next Bronnie ;) Continue reading

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