2020's clearly been a year like no other. For the first time ever I've been doing long distance buying without setting foot in South East Asia. This has been a difficult process - many of my regular suppliers are sadly either out of business or at least temporarily closed. Areas of Thailand which normally are thriving craft areas, have been more like ghost towns this summer.
Thanks to our long standing relationships, built over many years, we have still managed to complete a buying exercise and our latest container is currently winding its way through an ever-busy Suez Canal as I write this. Big, big thanks to all our wonderful craftspeople who have been happy to make items to order for us.
Normally when I am filling a container I am literally there in person, making sure we fill every inch of available space, before finally sealing the doors and sending it to the port.
This year has been very different - due to various COVID related restrictions (including me not being able to travel there), we have had to send all the stock in small trucks into the port where it has all been packed into the container there - meaning its not quite as full as I would like it, and a few things did not unfortunately make the cut, and will have to wait till next time...
Nonetheless I'm delighted to have what we did buy, making its way to us right now (in time for Christmas), and glad to have been able to fill quite a few custom orders from our clients!