SFMade is a fantastic organization that provides support to San Francisco based manufacturers. Under their guidance, we’ve seen an up-spring of a new small-scale, local manufacturing economy.
A few years ago, we were so impressed with companies in our own neighborhood operating under this premise that we created our own Vignette’s video series celebrating Rickshaw Bags and their neighbors: http://www.vignettesf.com/
Last week, Greg and I participated in the 6th annual SFMade Week – an event celebrating local manufactures, their products and their people. We visited Mission Bicycle Company for a factory tour.
It’s amazing to learn that in just 2 small rooms and with only 6 employees, Mission Bicycle Company manages to produce 600 bicycles a year. Bicycles that are revered and shipped around the world. Bicycles that become extensions of their owners, that help define who they are and enrich their lives by improving their commute and how they get around the city.
Every single part of the bicycles can be customized according to the owners wishes and you can either design your bike online https://www.missionbicycle.com/ or you can stop by the shop to schedule the design process whereby the nice people of the Mission Bicycle company help you measure out the best bike for you. Another thing we learnt was that not a single component of the bike features a logo, meaning that the Mission Bicycle company scour the world for not just the best quality parts, but also make sure each of those don’t take away from the overall aesthetic of the bicycle. Mission Bicycles basically are functional works of art.
As the world is changing, manufacturing is too. I notice the trend of consumption moving towards buying less products but investing more in their quality. Reinforcing the new economies of urban manufacturing on a small scale. Rejuvenating cities. Shifting how we live and what we do. Now that’s the next-new!