A penny for your thought
Today, I found myself sitting at my desk and thinking “How do I start talking about this?”
‘This’ being the topic of my small family run business, the bridal boutique Rasha Kashou Studio. A venture that is extremely personal to me as I invest so much of my time, dedication and heart into it. Did you know that every customer makes me do a little dance of joy?
Why would I want to share my thoughts with you? Well, because I see my little boutique and the many other local/ small independent businesses struggle around me in the current economic climate and I wonder; “How can we fix this?”
Shopping has become so much easier when it is in the palm of our hands and with cheaper offerings that are quick to arrive at our doorsteps, it is now the go-to option – Believe me, I know how convenient this is, we’ve all done it. Unfortunately, the repercussion of this convenience is the negative impact it is having on the high street, losing not only unique local shops and the local community that comes with it, but our choices are also having a direct impact on our local economy. By opting to shop local more regularly, we can play an active role in supporting our local industries and promoting economic growth.
My own input
I hold the same responsibility of supporting the economy when running a business as I do when being a consumer, so when I set up Rasha Kashou Studio back in February 2023, I decided to only stock British brands in my boutique and working with local professionals/ suppliers. This is because I believe we have a vast talent within these shores and exporting this talent is not always the answer. In fact, shining a light on these will eventually help us all in the long run.
My choices of buying and working with British organisations and professionals essentially puts the investment back into our own economy; creating more jobs and strengthening the infrastructure of our towns and cities. Each purchase we make from a British brand has a multiplier effect, where the money spent goes on to circulate within our own economy, benefiting various sectors, be it retail, manufacturing and/ or services. It is this synergy created by our collective effort to support local brands that drives economic growth, creates opportunities for prosperity, and ensures a brighter future for all of us.
Additionally, supporting British brands preserves our cultural heritage and traditions. Each corner of our nation is rich in history, craftsmanship, and unique regional specialties. By buying local, we endorse the talents and skills passed down through generations. Whether it is the renowned Scottish textile industry, the craftsmanship of the West Midlands in producing pottery, or the world-famous Savile Row tailors of London, each British brand tells a story of our culture and identity. By embracing these brands, we reinforce a sense of national pride while ensuring that our traditions and craftsmanship are not lost in the fast-paced world of mass production.
While the allure of foreign brands may seem tempting, it is crucial to recognize that not all products from abroad are of superior quality. British brands have a longstanding reputation for excellence, precision, and attention to detail. From luxury goods to everyday essentials, British brands often exhibit a level of quality that surpasses their foreign counterparts. By supporting these brands, we contribute to the growth and development of our own industries, enabling them to compete on a global scale. In doing so, we help foster innovation, research, and development within our country, further solidifying our position as a leader in various industries.
Have I gone too far in my examples? I may come across rather passionately when it comes to this topic, but I sincerely believe we can all contribute to turning things around for the better.
But the current financial times are hard!
Understandably, when people are struggling in the current cost of living crisis, that we find ourselves in, opting for cheaper options are easier to manage and one may argue that supporting local businesses can sometimes be more expensive.
While it is true that certain foreign imports may offer lower prices due to economies of scale, we must consider the long-term consequences of consistently choosing cheaper alternatives. As local British industries lose their footing, we risk becoming overly reliant on imports, leading to a loss of domestic jobs, skills, and expertise. So maybe we don’t just solely buy on-line but try to balance what we buy into British products whenever possible, alongside the odd cheaper import.
Importing products from abroad can also have a detrimental impact on the environment too, with increased carbon emissions from transportation. By investing in local brands, we promote sustainability and reduce our ecological footprint.
How can you support?
There are a few things you can do to support us independent businesses; the most obvious being to come in and make a purchase, you'll know that when we are personally invested in our jobs that we will do everything to maintain the relationship and offer you the best service possible.
There are also a number of ways to support us without even having to spend your money; such as visiting our social pages and follow, like, comment and share the posts. You can also Tag family/ friends on to the business’ posts or tag the business when you share a post of your own.
Writing a review on their business pages or even sending them praise in an email does wonders to a small business as is a very powerful tool in generating further business, it elevates the owners to a grand state of pure happiness and it encourages other customers to visit. The same goes for recommendations to family and friends, people will always want to go where they know a good experience has previously been offered.
Show up to events they may hold. After all, local is all about the social aspect with their community so building relationships is part of the experience.
Supporting British brands by buying local is vital for our economy, cultural heritage, and overall wellbeing. Each choice we make as consumers has far-reaching consequences, and by consciously opting for British products, we can play a pivotal role in shaping a prosperous future. Whether it is backing local businesses or ensuring the longevity of our industries. Let us remember that our choices as consumers can serve as a catalyst for positive change.
Together, we can build a brighter, more resilient future for ourselves and the generations to come.
“I am Rasha from Rasha Kashou Studio - a bridal boutique that offers an inclusive range of bridal wear and accessories which have been carefully curated to offer a variety of options in style and budgets. I started out designing and creating made-to-measure pieces, so alongside the amazing British designers stocked in my store, I also offer the personal service of bespoke designs to each client I work with, hand made to a high standard. I love nothing more than to talk about weddings and I am here for you should you fancy a chat about your wedding day look.”
07460 120 957