Quite often I get knocked by some of my friends for making many of our products in Australia. They think I am an idiot to use Australian workrooms when Asia is so close by. The common argument, which falls in their favour economically speaking, is that there is a lot more money to be made in your margin by making in Asia and by using Asian inputs.
The fact is, we do use Asian inputs - from our Korean interlining to our clips and Hong Kong gift boxes. We also use Italian inputs (our silks and cottons) and Dutch inputs (some of our canvas and tie interlinings) and Japanese inputs (our buttons) and Panamanian inputs (Corozo buttons). However, there is one aspect which they don't understand, and that is the hands-on control of production and inter-personal relationships with the workrooms. When your bow tie gets made, I can personally tell you who made it, I can tell you who cut your shirt, I can tell you who pressed your jacket. In a world which concentrates on keeping a distance between production and marketing - there is now a ground swell to change that and I would like to consider myself to be a part of that movement.