Saturday, February 7, 2009

Documenting the Process

I recently found myself at the crossroads of some life changing events. I guess that is why I chose the title that I did, for this blog. Several friends and family members have mentioned to me, that they thought I SHOULD blog. Not sure if this was due to their exasperation with my rantings and thought this would be a good outlet or a diversion? In any case,  I decided to take their advice and give it a try.

I am not a writer by any stretch. I am a designer and maker of soft toys and dolls, doll fashions, and plush. I have spent the last 25 years working in what I call the conventional toy and premium  business, for companies such as Mattel, Hasbro, McDonald's and others. I really love my work but over time I have found myself becoming more at odds with certain aspects of the industry. Questions such as-- why aren't modern toys made from real stuff like cotton, wool, and silk? Does it have to be petroleum based and synthetic? What about the consequences for using slave and prison labor to make our products- toys, especially, but any other thing as well? Why can't fair trade be the norm instead of the exception? Do I want to devote my life to making product to promote companies like Shell Oil and Mars candy when they have such objectionable business practices? This kind of work is very lucrative but weighs heavily on the conscience. How will I find a better way to support myself and my family and be able to create the toys I can believe in? I hope this blog will serve as a sounding board as I journey to find the answers and solutions if there are any, and to document my toy work, when time and non-disclosure obligations allow. Thanks for traveling with me.