Friday, December 26, 2008
There are a number of other resources that appear to make an honest effort to assist consumers with locating Made in the USA products which we very much appreciate. We list these other resources on our site but it occurred to us that a dynamic search of those resources could prove helpful for shoppers.
So we combined those sites and their pages into a custom search and they can all now be simultaneously searched from one location. You can give this new search a try here: Resource Search of Made in the USA Sites
Some of these resources are shopper friendly with links to sources of US made goods. Some merely list, without links - manufacturers, retailers or other sources. These sites can be helpful though and a comprehensive search of those sites could provide greater efficiency for shoppers. If a consumer simply finds a company or manufacturer name, that information alone could lead them to goods that we overlooked or have not yet listed.
Each resource was tagged with either Resource or Resource/Blog. Two of the sites in this search are also Blogs which usually review American made products and also offer Weekly Giveaway's of US made products. The search results includes these tags so that visitors will know the type of site appearing in the results before they click and visit.
Our own site is included in the search and may appear in some search results. The purpose of the search though is to highlight other resources and the hopefully helpful information they offer to shoppers. We are not responsible though for the content presented on those other sites.
We'll resume work on FindUSMade.com in January after a bit of a break to spend time with our families. Again, we offer our best wishes for a lovely holiday and a happy and prosperous New Year.
Mary - web person for FindUSMade.com
Saturday, December 20, 2008
Union workers tend to understand well the value of manufacturing in the US and they also tend to shop wisely in the marketplace for US made goods.
Many commercial goods, which aren't listed on our site, are made by union workers. There is a considerable amount of consumer goods that are made by union workers so this new department will expand in the future. Presently, there is a sampling of a number of consumer products that visitors can browse.
I suspect often consumers don't realize how many well liked products are union made. The EMCO storm doors you may have purchased for your home - made by union workers. If there's Land 'O Lakes butter in your refrigerator - it's union made. And if there's a Bradford White water heater delivering hot water for your shower in the morning - that's union made.
When I first started work on our site, during verification there was a union made urban tee & sweatpants that caught my eye. I ordered them and when they arrived I marvelled at those garments. I'm so accustomed to US made quality, yet I found my new purchases impressive. The tee was heavyweight, soft cotton, expertly stitched. The sweatpants were also heavyweight, fleece lined, double stitched and had 2 large side pockets. They are so snugly warm and they look great.
Out of curiosity I went to Amazon and searched for sweatpants. I found them. They were imported, lightweight and had no pockets. They were $18.00 - just what I paid for my union made domestic pair. Neither was sale priced.
The maker of my sweatpants was Eagle USA and they made a profit on my purchase and paid union workers. I can't help but wonder what the profit margin was for that foreign manufacturer who had much less in labor & material costs. There was no savings for the consumer, but there was a larger profit margin for the manufacturer.
Somewhere there was a shopper on Amazon that bought those imported sweatpants. Possibly they thought they got a deal. Foreign manufacturers and retailers promote the notion that consumers will find savings with imported goods. US made products are so expensive, right?
Wrong. That poor Amazon shopper will probably be on their third or fourth pair of sweatpants in the time it takes me to wear through these. That shopper may have spent $18.00 on their pair, but I invested $18.00 in mine.
The first time I used our site when live was to reorder these sweatpants in other colors. I wanted a good source for Eagle USA which has a Dealer Locator but I discovered that by using a search engine and searching Eagle USA with the style number of the garment I wanted, I could usually snag the item at a retailer. This is when I discovered my sweatpants on StitchXpress for $16.44 available in 10 colors. Well now, I can buy union made in the USA for less than imported. Does this mean more whining from foreign manufacturers about competition?
Sadly, some folks think union wages add to the cost of products. As an American manufacturer I understand well the distribution of profit behind the ultimate price to the consumer. The presence of union workers in US manufacturing explains only the value & craftsmanship found in the products they produce.
Did you, the consumer, believe that companies moved production abroad with an altruistic intent to pass on the savings to you?
I offer my appreciation to whichever of my fellow Americans made my tee and sweatpants. I've often laughed aloud in stores at poorly made imported goods but I've always owned US made sweatpants and these are the nicest I've ever owned. The stitching is expert & they launder extremely well. The long trip to the mailbox is much easier to brave this winter with this fleece lining. I've hauled pet toys, mail, paperwork and several cans of soda in these huge pockets. You've artfully mastered product quality, value & customer satisfaction. You're the competition the foreign manufacturers whined about, aren't you? The best they could do was match the price while coming nowhere close to matching the quality. (Bless their hearts, they think they can compete with you.)
Now I can ponder whether those foreign manufacturers are simply enriching themselves by manufacturing abroad or if perhaps they're just terribly inefficient operations unlike domestic manufacturers with union employees...
Mary - web person for FindUSMade.com
Saturday, October 25, 2008
Anderson-Little was a regional brand and was sold in 1966 to Richman Brothers, a national chain. The brand was bought and sold a few times until finally the last store was closed in 1998.
My family considered this a noteworthy loss because Anderson-Little was a family favorite. The garments were smartly designed, well made & comfortable. They wore well and as with most US made goods, they were fairly priced. Somehow the fit was ideal because I can't recall ever exchanging an Anderson-Little garment.
The Classic Blue Blazer - $139.00 plus free shipping
The Anderson-Little label and my own family are an example of business done right. This solid brand earned our trust & loyalty and wove its way into the fabric of our lives, our celebrations and memories. Birthdays, anniversaries and Christmas were all occasions that included a well received gift from this clothier and they were also the occasions this clothier's garments were worn.
It took years for the indomitable Scott Anderson, grandson of Morris Anderson to legally reclaim the name Anderson-Little. I'm not surprised that the Anderson family would return to what they know and do well - manufacturing men's apparel. It's not simply something they do - it's who they are; which as an American manufacturer, I understand.
Many US made products bear someone's name which traces to the pride they feel in what they've produced. Such folks understand there's a better way to do business and they're stubborn in insisting on employing American workers, offering the value of fairly priced well made goods and delivering superb customer service.
No type of compensation is involved as my words are offered as a satisfied customer. I find comfort in a familiar and time tested brand. I can spend my money and be assured of quality, fit and value. I can also do business with folks, not unlike myself, who embrace standards and who treasure their reputation as I do my own.
As the Anderson family tradition continues so will the tradition in my own family. They'll be a box under the tree this Christmas for my son. He'll receive a classic blue blazer with a label that bears the name Anderson-Little, just as things should be in my home. I'll be proud of the gift I purchase and I have no doubt my son will take pride in his appearance, just like his father and grandfather before him.
Thank you Mr. Scott Anderson & Mr. Stuart Anderson. Your family reminds me of who we are as a people and I thoroughly appreciate the reminder. Moxie is after all a hallmark of American manufacturers. Please know that your return to the American marketplace is greatly welcomed.