Interview with Jemma Finch from Stories Behind Things

We are thrilled to announce that a selection of our bestselling jewels are now available on The Seasonal Shop - the official online store of @storiesbehindthings ⁠⁠

Having partnered with @ecoage and @goodonyou_app, The Seasonal Shop was created with sustainability and ethics at the heart of its objectives. This, of course, aligns with Dear Rae’s mission to create a luxury product in the most ethical way possible. And we are both honoured and proud to be part of this wonderful project. ⁠⁠

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Interview with Jemma Finch from Stories Behind Things

Stories Behind Things was launched as a passion project by founders Jemma Finch and Ella Grace Denton, and was built on a desire to reconnect to the things we consume on a daily basis. The brand has since grown from strength to strength and, this month, we celebrate the launch of their online marketplace - The Seasonal Shop - that we are very proud to be a part of. 

The Seasonal Shop’s mission is to inspire more mindful consumption habits and most importantly, create a space to discover and learn about brands who are putting sustainability at the forefront of their business objectives. 


We chatted to Jemma about the importance of sustainability and how The Seasonal Shop tackles some of the major issues around consumption. 

What inspired you to create Stories Behind Things? Why and how has this journey led you to start the Seasonal Shop?

Stories Behind Things began as a passion project to celebrate the power of storytelling while trying to live a more sustainable life. Since then it has grown into a multi-faceted platform and force for positive change. For me personally, I came into sustainability through a mental health tense - I was tired of the fast paced consumption that we find ourselves in and I wanted to create a platform that ran counter to that. The Seasonal Shop was born of a frustration of seeing greenwashing and how complicated it’s making the market. There are so many brands out there genuinely prioritising the planet and the shop is here to represent those brands and get their stories heard.

 

 

What is greenwashing and how can we go about spotting it so as to avoid consuming irresponsibly?

Greenwashing is a term used to describe when a brand's marketing around sustainability runs counter to its actual practices. Essentially, brands recognise a sales opportunity by running sustainability focused marketing campaigns with no intention of following up or bettering the planet through their practices. My tips for avoiding greenwashing would be; look for the statistics to back up big claims, look into whether a brand is promoting overconsumption (if it is then it's probably greenwashing), and consider how transparent the brand actually is.

 

“Stories Behind Things’ mission is to empower people to live in line with their values everyday. We do this through exploring sustainability and mindful consumption.”

What does the term Mindful Consumption mean? And how can practicing it help to address the attitude-behaviour gap, or cognitive dissonance, often experienced by consumers.

Consuming mindfully, to me, means taking the time to evaluate your ‘why’. Why are you buying something and what purpose does it have in your life? Often we find ourselves scrolling through shopping websites when we are bored, sad or stressed, as a sense of release. I find it interesting to examine those behaviours and untangle the relationship that we collectively have with consumption. My advice would be to try analyse your own behaviour and work out what mindful consumption means to you!

 

 

One of the arguments against buying/living sustainably is the cost. Why does it cost more to be sustainable? Or does it cost less in the long run, depending how you look at it?

The honest truth is, we’ve gotten used to products being increasingly cheap and accessible. This has resulted in ethically made products seeming unreasonably highly priced and thus often cast aside. Fast fashion brands are renowned for not taking into account the human and environmental costs of making an item, which allows them to charge extremely low and uncompetitive prices. Cutting corners is essential for these global organisations to keep prices so low, often in the form of not fairly compensating their workers. We need to change the understanding and education surrounding how much it ACTUALLY costs to make something fairly.

 

What are some of your favourite sustainability-focused brands or initiatives that our Community can follow?

  1. For fashion - Fashion Revolution @fash_rev
  2. For Social Justice - The Slow Factory @theslowfactory
  3. For Intersectional Sustainability - Intersectional Environmentalism @intersectionalenvironmentalist

 

And lastly, what is your favourite handcrafted Dear Rae piece?

The solid 9ct gold Droplet Pendant in with Black Agate - which you can learn more about at The Seasonal Shop.

 

Visit The Seasonal Shop here or follow them here for great sustainability resources, storytelling, articles, interviews and to find out what you can do to enact change.

 

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