Changin’ Times/Keepin’ It Local

January 20, 2011 at 2:30 pm | Posted in Lemolo Bags, portland, What's New! | 4 Comments
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Dear Friends,

In the past I’ve done my best to keep you all informed on the latest in Lemolo developments, whether it be a new idea, a new bag, or a new direction. Honestly, it has been a bit of a struggle keeping Lemolo going over the past  year or two. I am sure you have noticed that I have had a inconsistent amount of product available at, what I’m sure seems like very random times. Aside from a short time back in early 2010 when I brought someone on to help with some of the sewing, everything Lemolo has been done by myself. That, combined with working 3-5 days tending bar has taken its toll on ol’ Eli. No complaints though, I have chosen the path that I am on and am happy with the choices I have made thus far.

I have said all of that to bring you up-to-date on current directions and developments on the business end of things around here. I had decided that, if Lemolo is going to continue then it can’t be just me, by myself, forever. A lot of thought has been poured into this area. I want to make the right decisions and please as many people as possible while trying to stay happy and sane myself. A tall order, I know. Time spent in the studio prototyping and behind the machine stitching has made it clear to me that I enjoy the design side of things much more than the production side. I am a very particular about my sewing, which partly is to blame for my slowness. I simply don’t have the speed that others have and that is a major disadvantage when it comes to trying to produce a large number of bags… obviously. Also, all that time spent trying to crank out bags has left only a very minimal amount of time to move forward, create more designs and grow the Lemolo Baggage line.

Ok, let’s get to the good stuff! It is important to me to have things created here in our great USA, and what better place than right here in Portland?! A mere 4 miles away (approx. 20 minutes by bike) from where I currently house everything Lemolo stands the Portland Garment Factory. I have recently had the opportunity to spend a little time with Britt, Rosemary and the rest of the amazing and talented crew there. Truly an amazing group of ladies. And our meeting could not have come at a better time for me. I feel very fortunate to have found them and am excited about what the future could hold for Lemolo and Portland Garment Factory.

Immediately upon entering into their gigantic space at SE79th & Stark you are welcomed by warm feelings, good energy, and the sounds of things getting done. Numerous sewing machines whirl away a few steps down from a large cutting table covered with fabric samples and works-in-progress. Pattern pieces hang along the wall next to the table while large shelves behind hold rolls of fabric awaiting use.

Britt and Rosemary have been both easy to talk to and fun to be around. They know how to be professional, while still keeping things feeling light. I am happy to announce that we are currently in the progress of working on our first project together. I am excited about this new development and hope that it is the beginning of a long, mutually beneficial relationship.

This new direction means a lot of things. The first, and most obvious, is going to be the availability of Lemolo. More Lemolo for more people! There is still a lot of work to do though. Don’t fool yourself into thinking you’ll start seeing loads of new Lemolo backpacks next week. I assure you it will be worth the wait though. I hope you are all as excited about this as I am! I will do my best to continue to keep you informed and up-to-date as progress is made.



P.S. I stole all the photos you see above from the PGF blog… follow them here.



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  1. I’m excited! In fact, I’m so excited, and i just can’t hide it..i’m about to lose control and i think i like it. :]

    Good luck with it all Eli…I think this will be a good move for you, and Lemolo in general.
    Perfectionism, doing everything yourself, and maintaining speed are hard things to balance…especially in my case with a kettle so close to hand. :]

  2. That awesome news, sounds like a good step for you to be taking, good luck with it!

  3. Wow, great news! Looking forward to seeing the outcome of this new relationship, LiLi.

    • thanks m.a! i am really excited about the possibilities.

      not sure if you are still doing studio visits, but i can make it happen whenever… if you’re still interested.

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