Mobilising a Hemp Movement
The moment that Goodlids really began to take an exciting shape came in July 2019. A friend of ours came back from Australia bearing gifts, a couple of beautiful t-shirts for the boys. After catching up with our old mate, we gave our fresh new tees a run. They were such an unreal material - I quickly looked on label and saw they were made from Hemp. Sick. We spent the night researching hemp and found out about the sustainable properties of the plant. Yet very few brands were using it.
It was at that moment that we realised we had a responsibility to make Goodlids from hemp. We could see pretty clearly that the issue with hemp was the negative stigma associated with the crop. Our greater mission had changed from making sustainable hats to mobilising the hemp industry by removing the negative stigma associated with the crop. If we built a hemp brand without the involvement of marijuana references and culture, we could go a long way to building something that breaks down that stigma and completely differentiates hemp from ‘weed’.
In our hemp research, we found some cool NZ brands that were already making hemp products. We decided to reach out to one of them, Original Canvas, to bring a Hemp Apparel Pop-Up to life.
I made a phone call to their creative director, Eden. Within minutes of chatting, and sharing our visions, we were on. Eden and her business partner, Brad flew up from Christchurch a few days later and we all went out to dinner to talk it over.
We discussed how important it was in the current global climate (literally the temperature) for brands that share sustainable values to help each other out and leverage each other to promote sustainable products. This was especially true of hemp - we knew that if we could increase exposure to the general public that there was a really good opportunity to normalise the use of hemp clothing. At the end of the night, after sharing some great stories about our respective businesses, and a few beers, we all shook hands. See you in November.
Six months later and we are about to break for the summer holidays. We have almost sold out of all of the hats that we ordered in our initial run. Original Canvas are selling more hemp clothing than they can sew. I have hardly had any negative comments about hemp at the Pop-Up or online. You get the odd person that asks in jest whether they can smoke the hats, but ultimately people are happy with hemp. It looks like hemp is here to stay. So are we.
See you guys in 2020, we have some cool plans!