As Earth Day approaches, we are reminded of what our planet needs and how we can contribute. We see the budding US “Maker Movement” at the forefront, forming an enclave of inventors and creators who aim to design rather than just consume, to spur rather than to inhibit local production and green thinking. Maker workshops have resurrected old values, as they emphasize artisan craftsmanship and product development processes that favor our environment.
Ten years ago, in2green was founded with this maker mindset, using revolutionary design while remaining 100% USA based. Inspired by a concern for the lack of truly “green” outdoor fabrics, we recently released the first ever UV resistant, eco throw blanket for outdoor living, made entirely from recycled plastic water bottles. We have experienced firsthand how difficult the “making process” can be, but it is certainly worth the quality, authenticity, and green reliability that can result.
Check out five key influences below that have shaped the Maker Movement:
1. Back to the future
Modernized e-commerce platforms like Etsy are rapidly expanding the global Maker marketplace, promoting and centralizing the selling of unique artisanal products. Digital artwork allows for printing designs on novelty materials, and easy-to-use computer programs like Arduino allow for interactive animations.
2. Make it, don’t fake it
Online video tutorials and DIY blogs have become a medium for sharing ideas and techniques. Newbie “Makers” can find instructions and inspiration on everything from knitting basics to up-cycling scrap wood.
3. Spaces & Places
“MakerSpaces” have become a meeting ground for collaborating together and maintaining a sense of community. “Maker Faires” also offer the opportunity for Makers to share ideas, sell, and connect locally.
4. We the People
Sites such as Kickstarter allow for alternative financing that make it easier for Makers to find funding. People get to contribute and interact directly with projects of interest.
5. Feeling the support
New mentorship programs offer the support and entrepreneurial experience that Makers need to get their bearings and to flourish. Join us in the Maker Movement, and reach out for potential “green” collaboration!