Emerging Designers / Handbags / Socially Aware

What’s Behind the Brand?

Are you a name brand junky or a consumer of quality goods?

I’m sure I’m not the only one who has always found the prices of some name brand items to be appalling. This past week I did some pricing research on several different types of leather bag styles in today’s retail market taking note of their sizes and what sort of hardware they use.

_12225356I noticed this Burberry ‘Small Belt Bag’ Leather & House Check Shoulder Bag at Nordstrom. This bag retails at $1,495 and it’s only 6 ¾” wide, 6 ¼” high, and 2 ½”deep!! In my opinion, that’s ridiculous. I understand, people often forget that the price of items is not only determined by the raw material costs but the labor cost and all the other overhead costs of running a business as well. But really, $1,495?!?!

Ever since I began thinking about all these things, every purchase I’ve made (not just fashion products) I think about the people behind the product and hoping that my purchase in some way will help them in life.

I feel it’s so important to educate yourself more about the brands you choose to support. Many consumers of name brands have got it in their head that popular name brands are pricey because they’re of a better quality than other brands. This isn’t completely true at all.

brandQuality is not defined by luxury, elegance, high price or an intrinsic goodness. The definition of product quality is the degree of excellence and conformance to requirements or the extent to which a garment meets expectations.

I’ve realized that products made by small businesses can be equal to that of the big names quality-wise; as long as the product is properly made without functionality flaws and meets every expectation. Interning at a small business has opened my eyes.

Owner/designer, Brynn Capella is the type of designer that cares about the quality of her products as well as staying true to the needs of her customers; and that includes what she ultimately charges.  Many name brand products in America have been over-priced and customers are essentially paying for the name of the brand, not just the quality.

I’m beginning to make it my business as a consumer to find out what brands are really all about; making sure they treat their employees with respect and they receive fair wages. As a design major, I have heard about big companies and issues about sweatshops. But I don’t think I realized how big of an epidemic it was in America.download

According to DoSomethig.org, one of the eleven facts they have about sweatshops states “Sweatshops often have poor working conditions, unfair wages, unreasonable hours, child labor, and a lack of benefits for workers.”

A 2011 journal pictured a list of 60 brands that have been accused of using sweatshops before. This is all the result of an unfortunate capitalistic society that has been getting worse ever since the beginning of the Industrial revolution here in America.

Recently, we started designing and updating a few new bag styles: an everyday tote, a small side bag, a hip/belt bag, etc. Since we’re consciously keeping the price of leather, labor, hardware, etc. in mind as we finalize designs and pricing, I’ve come to understand more about the differences between price and quality.

Brynn Capella is proud to be an American-made brand and the craftsmanship of every product is 100% guaranteed.


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