Peace by Piece

Peace by Piece is a tentative name for a new Local Buttons and Brandaid collaborative project. In Ezra’s Pound at the Dundas West location Anne, Cameron and I brainstormed on a suitably rainy day. We discussed how to launch a clothing line that would be made in Haiti and designed in Toronto. The cafe literally rained with our ideas. Pun intended. The lightening idea was to design an awareness piece. After some time a VEST was chosen to be our signature item. How did this all come to be? “Rein” me in and I’ll flashback to tell you..

Following our fashion show, Cameron had told Anne and I Brandaid was interested in expanding its business with Haitian artisans. It was interested in establishing a clothing line, and would Anne and I like to facilitate the process. Yes we would. Hence the “squealing like school girls” that Anne rightfully referred to.

Together we discussed the relevancy of creating a clothing partnership between Haiti and Toronto. There is an abundance of skilled garment sewers that live in the post-earthquake camps. Our project would be one more initiative to engage Haitians in sustainable enterprise. Made from refurbished clothing, Peace by Piece would be supplied by the second hand garment industry in Haiti. The second hand clothing market, referred to as ‘Pepe’ in Haiti, allows for several tons of clothing to escape landfills and to be reintroduced into the fashion industry. This collaboration between Toronto designers and the garment sewers in Haiti will function as an alternative to sweat shop labour. The garment sewers will receive fair pay and a share in the profit of the final sale of each garment.

Here are two interesting articles that further illustrates the relevancy of such a project in Haiti:
http://heartofhaiti.wordpress.com/2010/04/22/killing-haitians-with-north-american-kindness/

http://www.secondhandfilm.com/project.html

The Vest! aka our signature item, will lead to our launch of a clothing line. We cannot wait to disclose to you its design and designer! So stay tuned!

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