If you have found yourself on this page it’s likely you’re wondering what happened to Cosmic Drifters – the following is a brief explanation into why the business has had to close down…
All good things must come to an end.
We have truly loved making witchy garments for you all over the past 8 years. Unfortunately it is harder than ever to run an ethical small business & we have been left with no choice other than to close up shop.
In the simplest terms, these are the main contributing factors to this decision:
- Our original designs being repeatedly stolen by unethical brands & being unable to compete with the fast fashion prices
- Rising rent & bills at our studio
- Rising production costs
- Unstable Economy
- Shipping issues & unreliable service from the Royal Mail
- Brexit massively shrinking our EU audience due to extortionate import fees
As much as we would love to continue dishing out magical wares, this is the only feasible option for us at this point.
It is important to note that this has not been a terrible year for us in terms of sales, we have actually sold more items than ever before & grown our audience across all social platforms.
The problem is that our costs have risen at the same time & unfortunately outrun our income. We’ve faced supplier issues, shipping issues and other problems behind the scenes; the cost of which has always fallen on us. As a small business that handcrafts each item one at a time, we simply don’t have the capacity to keep up with such high production costs.
The Problem with Fast Fashion
Most upsettingly to us, fast fashion plagiarism has played a huge role in undermining our brand. Overseas companies have stolen not only our designs, but our social media content to sell knock off versions of our products via constant online advertising.
This has really damaged our business, both through cheapening our aesthetic and negatively impacting trust in us, the original designers. We have received several comments online from people wondering why they should shop with us when they can buy copies of our products so much cheaper elsewhere.
In this industry it feels impossible to stand by one’s values and come out on top because the fashion industry at large is built on a foundation of exploitation. Brands like Shein, one of the companies that has stolen our artwork in the past, use slave labour and sell items for pennies because they cost less than pennies to make.
Many people don’t understand the extent or value of the labour that goes into our product, as such they don’t see why they should buy a £130 handmade dress when they could buy a $30 copy from a knock off brand.
A Note from Jenny
Times are tough for a lot of us right now.
It’s harder than it’s ever been (in my living memory) to run a small business that is built on what should be a basic foundation of moral values. I feel proud of what I’ve accomplished because I’ve stood for what I’ve believed in throughout.
I pay living wages to my production team and designers, I craft designs that I believe in and invest in print artwork that is meticulously produced over weeks of careful work.
I try to represent a wide cross section of humanity throughout our content and I cater to a wide size range because I believe in the simple principles of mutual respect and equality!
Ultimately I’ve made decisions based on what I believe is right, rather than on what fills my pocket… It hasn’t been amazing for the bottom line, but my soul feels safe, if you believe in that stuff!
I’m sure that I could save Cosmic Drifters from closing by taking advantage of people and giving up my values like the rest of the industry, but I’d rather do something else where I feel more able to make a difference and have a positive impact on this world.