I Wanna Be a Warhol and Other Musings

buckle_and_stickers_01This is a post I wrote at the very beginning of March and I just realized I forgot to post it.  This actually makes the first paragraph even more pertinent.

Well... we’ve been relatively radio silent for the past few weeks.  That’s not because we’ve forgotten about you or Modern Industry.  In fact, it’s quite the opposite.  We’ve been incredibly busy... and at times... lacking reliable computing devices. Our work in the past few weeks essentially falls into two categories: (1) Kickstarter delivery and (2) Shaping the post Kickstarter Modern Industry.

From a Kickstarter standpoint, we’re working hard to deliver the highest quality rewards we can and meet our delivery dates.  A few weeks ago, we sent out our first Kickstarter Rewards.  After Mike finished printing the first posters and designing the process book, we decided to get real hip.

We spent a Saturday afternoon hanging out in an Inner Sunset coffee (Martha & Brothers Coffee, we believe) shop packing envelopes and writing letters to our backers.  Why a coffee shop? More on that later.  After a few hours spent working on our moustaches, the packages were shipped all over the world via the venerable United States Postal Service.  A day or two later, Lorris went the extra mile by sending personalized emails containing our process book to each of you jerks who contributed at the $10 and $25 rewards levels... Generous, generous jerks.

Business cards

Now.. what you’ve all been waiting for.  Where are we on the bags and wallets?  The primary reason we had such an extended timeline for these products is that some of our materials, namely the leather, are custom orders.  I know you’re thinking, “What do you mean black leather has to be custom ordered?”  Frankly, it surprised us too.

When selecting our leather, we wanted to go with the very best.  Horween, who offers silky smooth, luxurious vegetable tanned leather made without harmful chemicals, was the obvious answer.  When we discovered Horween only uses food industry byproducts we were sold.  Unfortunately, Horween only accepts custom orders than can take up to 8 weeks to be delivered.  Fortunately, we acted as fast as we could and our order of 500 sq feet of cow skin is due to be shipped early next week. (After some frustrating and unexplained delays, the leather finally shipped on Monday.)

Our other custom component is the signature “G-Buckle” on that is used to close each of our bags.  The process of getting these made was a breeze.  They were first laser cut from aircraft grade aluminum by our friends at Rustworks.  They were then anodized to achieve a durable, beautiful matte black finish at nearby PK Selective.  Both of these firms do amazing work.

The latter is doing some really cool things by turning sheets of aluminum into anodized works of art.  We are definitely not taking full advantage of their capabilities... yet. The box of a few hundred buckles is now sitting on our shelf waiting to be shipped to Spokane, Washington once we receive our final gold samples.(We shipped the buckles to Spokane last week.)


That takes us to our final gold samples.  These samples are a step beyond the samples we used in our Kickstarter campaign and will serve as the templates for the products we deliver to you.  Here too, we are pushing our manufacturing partner to their limits.

In order to deliver the very best products, we have exacting standards when it comes to our hardware sourcing and product detailing.  After weeks going back and forth... and sending Lorris to the factory... we are close finalizing even the smallest details.  This should be completed within the week.   That means we should receive our final gold samples before the end of the month... hopefully sooner. (We are still waiting on the gold samples due to some sourcing issues that we have finally worked out.  They should be shipped this week.)

Obviously this has been a learning experience for everyone involved.  We are working to solidify and nurture relationships that will hopefully serve us well in the future.  We are building a library of materials and hardware that we will be able to use in the future to cut down on development and production time.  We are becoming well versed in our manufacturers sampling processes so we can do our best to streamline them in the future.  All of this work will ensure that we deliver you the best products possible as Kickstarter rewards and beyond.

I will leave you with the gift of Alkaline Trio.

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