We will never stop thanking you!
We’ve reached our number more than enough, and everything is thanks to you all. But If we’re honest, we’ve been overflown by all this. That’s why we’ll have to redirect our plans so we don’t die of success.
The rewards from the pledging after November the 1rst won’t be delivered according to our planned calendar.
Still, we will do everything we can in order for you to have your hoodies before 2016. Again, thank you all for your support and empathy. On the other side, we’d like to let you know we won’t do any more simulations of the combinations after we’re done with all the petitions we already have. We’re overworked!
In La ciutat invisible we like to imagine. To project dreams of new post-capitalist realities. We like to think how it would be and how to implement it in our present practice. And one of those dreams is to be able to create 100% co-operative products, imagine that the fair trade certification looses its meaning and necessity, that ecology is not an added value but a daily practice. Dream and practice. Take care of the means and the social relationships. Being jointly responsible.
We've been co-operating for a decade to be able to transform things. We've been ten years printing our invisible clothing catalog filled with contradictions. Trying to find the balance between an affordable price to suit your budget and what we imagine. And we're constantly facing the same problem: intermediaries and more intermediaries. The only solution to build a social market is for us to control the production sources and socialize its responsibility. For a decade we've been working step by step to get over our own contradictions.
What is La Ciutat Invisible?
La Ciutat Invisible (The invisible city) is a co-operative and self-managed project whose main aim is to build an alternative to the precarious work that the economic capitalist system imposes.
Our activity wants to create and spread critical content to encourage processes of political and social transformation.
Basically, in two directions:
The strengthening and construction of an inter-cooperation net linked to the feminist and solidarity economy.
The spreading of self-managed and autonomous political practice of re-appropriation in the local politics.
These aims have nurtured with content and have strengthen our critic library, have contributed to the development and elaboration of new imaginaries through the graphic communication; and have taken shape in projects that combine social research, development of communicative strategies and community intervention.
KOSTURITIS, hoodies produced in Catalunya
Three years ago we experimented in the dressmaking area with our own patterns and producing at a local level. This path, because of its proximity, has taken us to Maresme, a region with a textile tradition industry whose suffered with heavy relocating during the 90's. Small and medium-sized enterprises -family business basically- who couldn't compete with big producers such as Inditex resisted thanks to a strong net of relationships rooted in the area.
Our small adventure through Maresme started six years ago in Premià de Mar when Camilo introduced us to the people of Belcolor, a small family business located on the ground floor of their own home. Since, we've been printing our clothing with them. As they tailored too, we started dreaming and made small tailoring tests like belt pouches and skirts.
Designed Sants, Barcelona
Three years ago, thaks to an informal collaboration with Laura Cans, we could go a small step forward into making our own first hoodie produced locally. Laura is an unemployed librarian whose passion is theatre and costume designing. Trained as a fashion designer, she has walked with us this path of learning and mutual creative exchange. Informally and between us we call our hoodies Kosturitis, the name of Laura's blog, costuritis aguda and her [facebook] page (https://www.facebook.com/CoStuRitiS-aGuDa-197976953572622/).
Now, after two years experimenting, we've improved our previous model, examining it and increasing sizes from 1 to 99 years. At the same time, we present a new model of hoodie. Our intention is for this collection to keep on growing. That's why we will keep using the name KOSTURITIS for the collection but we'll use names like Zenobia or Fedora for our new models, taken from the book of Italo Calvino, Le Città Invisibili, that gives name to our co-operative.
During 20 days all of those who help us facing the strong investment to produce these hoodies will have the opportunity to customize the colors of their hoodies. The deal with our close producers allows us to offer, from time to time, this service. Although this will carry a management extra effort we've thought this is the best way to reward your trust and bet on this project.
We encourage you to be creative and think of a special combination for you.
The big question. ¿Why a Verkami?
Many of you will be surprised by this crowd-funding project and will think it looks more like an on-line pre-selling shop. Well, it's not far from what it looks like.
The associated costs of producing the shipment of hoodies is very high for our economic capacity. Three years ago, with our first experiment, we made a shipment of 60 hoodies that were sold very fast. Last year we did four shipments of production getting close to the 500 units. A big success!
After a good commercial campaign during Christmas, thanks mainly to the impact of the hoodies, we thought of jumping forward generating three new workplaces. Irene, entered as a bookseller and multipurpose woman. Juan, entered the department of consulting and co-operative accompaniment. Natalia has entered the route to stimulate the creativity in the [design and communication] design (http://www.laciutatinvisible.coop/disseny /). They are our asset, who will guarantee the future of our co-operative. Fresh air to help develop our [educational] programs (http://www.laciutatinvisible.coop/formacio/), researching and social intervention.
That's why we've decided to do this verkami, for the survival of our project. We want to make a change in the productive system but without taking unnecessary risks that could put in jeopardy the economic stability of our co-operative. We want to make sure that this bet has your support and that is worth the risk to take it forward without fear.
Nobody said it was easy... We keep growing!
Betting on the growth of the co-operative, as we understand it, requires time to train and coach the people that, after some time of mutual testing, will decide If they enter as partners in the co-operative.
During this process of accompaniment, we've realized how complex our project is and the multiple tangential and antagonistic lines that we work with. Sometimes it is hard to communicate everything we do and this Verkami pretends to be an exercise of transparency not only when it comes to numbers: we want to make visible our most invisible.
Betting on generating workplaces it's always risky and it has been an impact in our liquidity. In July we had to make drastic decisions and get to work on it. We do not regret a thing, on the contrary, we're very happy with the rhythm we've taken and thanks to the effort of the whole group, workers and partners, we can keep on dreaming our own reality.
When it comes to dreaming...
Just like last year we dreamt on expanding our staff, now we bet on consolidating it thanks to this year's Christmas campaign. At the same time, we've decided it's a priority to dignify our collaborator's jobs: Laura, Roc Blackblock, Judit Panxeta, Joan Negreescolor, Turu, etc.
Numbers don't work
Although it seem we have work, our commercial betting work as well... In the end, the numbers don't work.
That's why we've focused on our work and investment to see what's going on. The answer is in the margins. The 21% of VAT makes us very angry. This is something you end up suffering. And we do, as well, because in the end, If at the end of the month we can't guarantee decent salaries, how is this an alternative economy? We're talking about balancing, aren't we?
Last year we learnt that it is not very sustainable to fragment the production. It carries an excess of management not only in production but in promotion of the product and it's stock. Margins again. That's why this year we want to speed it up by using this Verkami as a communicative campaign of promotion and, off course, as a funding campaign as well. Right now we don't have the capacity to take on this investment and we don't want to increase the credit we have with Coop57. That's why we ask for your collaboration and responsibility with what you consume, supporting this initiative.
What happens with the statement of 100% co-op, fair and solidary products?
Our dreams are inalienable.
If this works out, it will be a qualitative and quantitative leap forward in our production line and it will take us one step forward to changing the mode. It's basic to increase the shipment to control more the product and guarantee reasonable prices for everyone involved.
As we consolidate our local system, we will be able to spend resources in researching and dealing directly with the producers of organic cotton, knitted fabric or plush that allow us to reach the level of sustainability and respect we wish. Also, we want to keep researching with other types of fabric and clothing such as t-shirts, dresses, pants,... As we said, step by step, slowly but surely, far but real.
The big journey, relocate capitalism.
As we're going far away, we like to dream and see what's the next step to come. We like to imagine someday we will have the means and the human strength to reCO-OPerate the textile Maresme and fuse it with its strong co-operative legacy. To be able to build a solidary and supportive economy it has that: snatch the sources of our daily needs to the capital. Controlling consumerism and betting on projects like ours lay the foundations to make real this dreams of networking.
We want to do a 20 days crowd-funding.
It will end November the 11th and 12th we will send you the form so you can choose your sizes and colors to start the production. If you answer the form the first week after the crowd-funding is over, from ** December the 9th ** we'll send all the rewards so you can have them before Christmas.
Reward Delivery Party in Barcelona
Also, we'll have a * photo call * in which we'll be able, If you want to, to have a very colored photo shoot with your rewards.
From December the 14th you'll be able to collect them in Valencia, Palma, Euskal Herria or Madrid. Soon we'll confirm the addresses of the places whose offered to deliver our rewards.
About the production: We've already ordered a shipment of 150 hoodies Fedora for adults (4 combinations of color) and of Fedora for children (3 combinations of colors) we plan on having them in 15 days. About the Zenobia model, we're finishing the prototypes and we'll start producing them when this campaign is over. Don't worry, If you want it, you'll have your warm hoodie for this winter!
Delivery in Europe
In the side bar, you'll find different options of delivery in Europe