Made Right (Here): How One Woman Is Reclaiming ‘Made in the USA’
By Shelagh Dolan
Every single one of us is faced with making thousands of decisions every day. But what if instead of going through the motions, you made conscious choices – even the smallest changes – to positively impact the economy and the environment?
Houston-based lifestyle blogger, Anna, decided to create made right (here), a website detailing her journey committing to these choices. In January of 2014, Anna realized she’d had enough of America’s overconsumption of cheaply and unethically made goods. She began The Not Made in China Challenge, swearing off all products manufactured in China, and vowing to buy eco-friendly, ethical, zero-waste, and American-made products whenever possible.
She’s been sharing her story on her blog ever since by keeping readers up to date with lists of trusted American-made brands and products, curating a Made in USA LookBook of ethically and sustainably sourced clothing and accessories, and creating guidelines towards living a more sustainable lifestyle.
Since beginning made right (here), Anna has reduced her Made in China purchases – or “felonies” as she calls them – from more than five in 2014 (things like ceiling fans and a computer), to four in 2015 (prescription glasses frames and running shoes), and, proudly, zero in 2016.
“As time has passed, I’ve come to rock this challenge, continuously getting better at shopping everything made right (here), pushing further and finding better resources,” Anna says. “As I discover new brands and products I share it here on my blog, hoping to be a positive light and influence in the world.”
In addition to pushing for locally made goods, she promotes sustainable living on her blog, breaking it down into three main categories: Shopping & Fashion, Eating & Food, and Habits – each with a set of guiding principles to help readers make more sustainable choices.
Common themes across categories include reducing consumption, checking tags for product and shipping information, and using just what you need – not what you want. By making small adjustments in each of these areas, Anna says, we can reduce our carbon footprint and help the planet.
Covering a wide variety of topics, some of Anna’s most popular posts over the years have included how to choose eco-friendly fabrics, a list of must-see documentaries on consumption and sustainability, spotlights on locally and ethically sourced clothing, the environmental impact of denim jeans, how to stay eco-friendly at the office, and the cost of shopping sustainably.
Not at home? Not a problem. Anna has also written several posts about how she’s managed to remain economically and environmentally friendly while traveling to different places around the country including New York City, Los Angeles, Boulder, and Lake Powell. Wherever you may be, there are always steps you can take to support our country and the environment.
Anna hopes that her passion for sustainable, American-made products will spread to readers through her blog so that others can share in her rewarding journey. She says, “If just one person is inspired to shop differently and change their behavior a teeny bit because of my blog, I have succeeded.”