This shop aims to showcase a revival of things we love and care about. Our manifest below, makes a clear statement of the values that we stand for and the motivations that bring us forward. We do realise that is hard to tick all the boxes, but the pursuit of these goals is what brings us motivation to develop our shop and ourselves.

1. Conscious Consumerism

2. Borrow, swap, fix, create or buy second hand!

3. Support the environment and people while buying and creating

4. Products are memories

5. Support artisans and small businesses

 
 Brasserie de Sierkan, Den Haag © Sara Lima

Brasserie de Sierkan, Den Haag © Sara Lima

 
But what is at stake here is an expansion: from changing automobiles every few years, to considering everything a throw-away item, and considering all consumer goods, and indeed, most human values, to be disposable.
— Victor Papanek, "Design for the real world"

 

1. Conscious Consumerism

Nowadays people are more aware that consumerism is a political act. Every time we buy something we are saying we agree with the product, the way it was created/produced, built and sold. We agree that we need it. Ultimately, how we deal with products and services shape the way we position ourselves in the world.

We support the idea of owning things that are meant to stay. Everything is getting obsolete and is not even useful for more than a short period of time. All runs out fast, things are made to be broken, lost or forgotten. This evidence comes from the way we manage products but also the way they are produced. It’s not by accident that a lot of objects from other times are still in good shape as opposed to modern ones. The use of noble materials (like glass, iron, wood) made things last a lifetime on contrary to plastic and disposable materials of modern times. We are producing more than what we need, buying more than what we can use or can afford just to throw away shortly after. Logically we will have a permanent role as consumers, however when we do buy something, we can make an effort to take more conscious decisions.

 © Sara Lima

© Sara Lima

 
That which we throw away, we fail to value. When we design and plan things to be discarded, we exercise insufficient care in designing.
— Victor Papanek, "Design for the real world"
 

2. borrow, swap, fix, create or buy second hand!

 © Sara Lima

© Sara Lima

Stop buying is of course a very radical solution. However, we have the power to decide how nowadays mass consumption shapes our daily life. We don’t need to fully avoid the consumerism attitude, but instead, find parallel alternatives. Not everything in life that we need to use, needs to belong to us. The concept of borrowing and swapping goods is slowly emerging again and there is even platforms to do it more easily. Similarly, fixing our broken or damaged belongings used to be a natural way of proceeding back in the time, while now seems like ancient history. Most of the times, fixing is cheaper than buying new, however we are programed to think otherwise. We are also losing the ability to have the simple skills to do it, because we develop the lazy attitude of expecting someone else to do it for us, or we just go to a store and buy it new. Gladly, we do believe that we are also making use of our creative skills, and sometimes instead of buying we can use what we have to create something new and more useful for us. DIY videos and tips are everywhere and is trendy and fun. This is a good opportunity for re-using what we already have in hands and avoid waste. Lastly, if not buying is not a solution, we can always recur to second hand, one of our favourite options!

3. Support the environment and people while buying and creating

Secondhand shops allow good furniture and objects to be reused or recycled instead of thrown away, producing less garbage and less unnecessary production. The majority of second hand shops are usually connected with charities, creating job opportunities for people in need. These stores also expand the opportunity for people with lower economic possibilities to furnish and decorate their houses with comfort and dignity. This we believe to be a multiplier effect of good. A win-win situation. People donated instead of creating garbage, others have a new job opportunity and affordable prices make the shop open to everyone. In The Netherlands this concept is well organised and have a lot of success. In Portugal there’s still some prejudice in going to this kind of stores as if it’s not fancy enough or with quality products. But we know that those are the places to find real treasures and more important, something out of the mass production scale that makes all homes alike.

4. Products are memories

For us, keeping the portable radio from our grandfather or use a typewriter as he used to do is not only for the object itself but the power of the memory and feeling attached to it. And guess what? Both still work, perfectly!

We trust that certain products can tell the story of our memories, education and beliefs. These are the kind of products we choose to have in our shop. Classic pieces of design, products with timeless usability, meaning and aesthetic value.

 Den Haag, © Sara Lima

Den Haag, © Sara Lima

 
Throwing away furniture, transportation, clothing, and appliances may soon lead us to feel that marriages (and other personal relationships) are throw-away items as well and that on a global scale countries, and indeed entire subcontinents, are disposable like Kleenex.
— Vitor Papanek, "Design for the real world"
 
 Essaouira Morocco, © Sara Lima

Essaouira Morocco, © Sara Lima

5. Support artisans and small businesses

 
Business was originated to produce happiness, not pile up millions.
— B.C. Forbes in the first issue of Forbes
 

Another important matter to our shop is supporting artisans and small businesses. For this reason, we decided to share our platform of vintage products (collected with love by us) with handmade products made by artists. As a maker, is quite hard to strive in this mass production world, competing with prices, marketing and originate sales that allow you to subsist and grow. It’s important for us to support other creatives, that like us, started their own business out of their love and own ideas and deserve support and collaboration that helps them to succeed. The creativity factor is highly important for us. We want to share and give space to new creatives and provide an eclectic choice in our shop.

But, why should you support this small shops and artisans/artists instead of buying in bigger retail companies?

 Image credit –  @thepastelfox

Image credit – @thepastelfox

  • Small businesses care about your feedback

Behind small business are real people that work hard to survive alongside big companies. Your satisfaction is taken serious. Each feedback or each sold product counts and sometimes is like a personal victory to the small business owner.

  • Small business is made from real people to real people

You can more easily know the persons behind the business where you’re buying, creating a connection you would not have with big companies owners. If this place is located in your community you can meet them in person and if is an online place, you can more realistically ask questions and get to know about the person who runs it.  Small businesses create a sense of community, since you can be directly closer to the seller and their work.

 
Most independent businesses are run by people - not by boards, not by stockholders, not by algorithms. And so you get a different kind of care and quality in their product because their work is a reflection of themselves. Instead of focusing on the next market they’re expanding into or the next round of funding they’re raising, they’re focusing on the details and being the best they can be.
— Erica Cerulo and Claire Mazur (co-founders - Of a Kind)
 
  • Small businesses create product diversity  

A small business is a platform that helps to flourish diversity and uniqueness. Each one of this independent markets is one-of-a-kind and something new to explore. We live in a world of uniformization and globalisation and shops that are unique start to be a rare thing to come across.

  • Small Businesses Offer Expert Craftsmanship

Local markets or small shops run by artisans and craftsmen often have highly qualified people for their business. In some cities or  neighbourhoods we can still find traditional artisans that keep alive aspects of local culture while producing high quality products, with usability and durability. By buying from them, it helps not only to support the local community and traditions, but also arts and crafts in general and skilled people like artisans that are more often disappearing. Some of their skills are unique and will disappear if not passing along to the next generations.

 

When you support small companies, you allow people to create their own businesses, doing what makes them happy. Is about supporting own job creation, creativity and individuals!