Granted, leather bags are not the same as electronic products, but this start-up faced the same decisions as a US electronic kit business does: Manufacture in China, or make it yourself in the US?
Johansson relates a story that reveals the harsher reality: “My first job was actually for a designer in this building, coincidentally. She was a small designer, just by herself, just like this—but she produced in China. Because that’s the way you think you do it, that’s the way you’re taught in school to do it—that’s why I came with that mindset of ‘This is how you start a business: You make your connections, and you find your sources in China and your factories.'” With their basäder bags, the two designers demonstrate that out-sourcing isn’t the only path to take, and join the movement that’s proving high-quality, made-in-America and durability can all be synonymous with affordability.