One of my favourite parts of travelling is discovering what the locals love. This includes avoiding Starbucks and drinking lattes from the local cafe, eating at restaurants that support the local economy, and not always relying on ticket attractions for cultural entertainment. This also means scoping out the cool brands that are in at the moment.
Walking down the street and seeing someone wearing the exact same shirt you are is a bit embarrassing; not only do you not want to wear that shirt anymore you may think about avoiding the mall for a bit. What is even better is when you are wearing a shirt you got from a local boutique and getting to tell people about it. It makes you feel better knowing you are supporting the community rather than materialistic capitalism.
When we were in Oahu we came across a store called HE>i. We didn’t know what it meant, but it looked cool (hence the importance of eye-catching logos and good marketing). Walking in the store it was simple yet cool; the brand was on everything, but it was a local brand so it was okay. I bought just a t-shirt because I can’t resist the uniqueness of local brands (but am also poor so that’s all I could afford).
You’re probably wondering why I am making a big deal about some random company; buying local isn’t exactly original. What made this brand even better was how it came about and what the name means. I’m sure you have figured it out by now but if not HE>i (HEgreaterthani) expresses the importance of faith. I am not a very religious person, but there was something about the origins of the brand that stuck with me and made me excited to be a part of it. You can check out their website for the whole story but the passage from the Bible that they connected to the brand is worth writing down (John 3:30). It is a reminder that there is something bigger than you at work, and maybe all the small little complaints you have during the day are important when you step back and look at the bigger picture.
[He must become greater and greater; I must become less and less.]
What are your favourite local brands?