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Care how your clothes get made? So do we! Introducing ishi: Vests with Benefits!
Care how your clothes get made? So do we! Introducing ishi: Vests with Benefits!
366 backers pledged $23,047 to help bring this project to life.

About

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$23,047

366

Pre-order an ishi vest & you'll STAND OUT while you STAND up for people & the planet.

what the vest?

Wait...vests? Heck yes! We've thought through every detail -- from the hip, slanted pockets down to the sustainable, chemical-free dyeing process. An ishi vest lets you stash your stuff, stand UP for your values, and stand OUT for your style -- all without breaking a sweat.

 

anatomy of an ishi vest

but really, why vests?

Because vests are the best! Vests make great gifts. They have cool inside pockets to let you cart your fancy gadgets around without missing a beat. Best yet? They add a whole new level to your wardrobe. Since they’re supremely versatile, you can wear them with t-shirts or collared shirts.

the ishi story -- seeds

After returning from a powerful trip to India two years ago, I was downing a mocha at one of my favorite cafes while scribbling away in my journal. A hip twenty-something interrupted to ask about my vest. I racked my brain to think of how she could order a traditional Indian vest like mine in Chicago.

As we traded emails, we also traded ideas about the world. We chatted about farmers’ struggles over seeds in India and the stupid, awful process by which our clothes get made - polluting whole rivers and harming workers across the globe. The month went on, and this moment continued to repeat itself again... and again... and again. That’s when the seeds of ishi vest were planted. 

the ishi story -- today

For the past year, we (Jackie, Rhea, and I) have been scheming and talking about how to create a hip, sustainable product that reminds us how our smallest choices can have a huge impact. 

We were lucky to connect with a hugely talented fashion designer, Tamana, who put her own twist on the traditional Indian vest.

Finally, I have been blessed to meet the entrepreneurs behind an incredible new fabric company, called Aura. It’s a sustainable, organic, worker-conscious fabric company near my hometown in India. The fabric for the vests starts with seeds that were grown organically. The cloth is then dyed naturally with herbs and minerals so that the water comes out almost cleaner than it went in. It’s amazing. Together, with your help, Rhea, Jackie, and I can’t wait to launch ishi vest.

what we started out raising money for

Friends, when we first launched this Kickstarter we never imagined we'd reach our seed funding goal in just *5 short days!* Wow. Our initial $10,000 goal was to get ishi off the ground by producing our first run of 300 vests from our incredible, sustainable, fair trade, organic factory in Gujarat. 

After that initial success, we set new "stretch" goals. In just 9 days, we were already up to $15,000 and had been featured in the Chicago Sun-Times. Amazing! This meant we'd not only make those first 300 vests, but we'd get to produce a new women's vest and start the design process for an awesome unisex style that our kickstarter backers get to vote on.

With 15k under our belt (woo!), we began gearing up for our next crazy goal. If we hit $20,000, we promised to produce a powerful video with footage of the amazing fabric company that we work with in India & highlight why the kinds of fair trade, sustainable benefits we offer are so critical. It's gonna happen!

what we're raising money for now

We're still going strong, and now we are pushing into the last 10 days of our Kickstarter. We've got big plans if we hit 30k.

As a thank you to everyone who believed in us, we will not only ask for backers' input with coming designs and inVESTments, but we'll include a set of awesome ishi story pins in each kickstarter order (we'll include extras for those who already purchased these).

Chipping in couldn’t be simpler. By pre-ordering a vest now, or purchasing a unique gift or celebration ticket, you will help us get from the idea phase to actually fulfilling these crazy dreams of ours! Check out the sustainable gifts on the right, buy something awesome today, and help us prove that this kind of business is possible.

get your ishi on!

Shipping Note: All ishi swag sold on Kickstarter includes free domestic shipping. After our campaign is over, we'll be charging for shipping - so get your ishi on! 

ishi vest colors

Our first round of vests come in a variety of 5 main colors: Charcoal, Sand, Salmon, Sea and Maroon. Because this is our first go, there are some variations in shades and weave. When you purchase your ishi vest, you will get a survey and we will ask you for your color preferences.

ishi vest sizing chart

why you’ll love it 

We know that you’ll eventually become as obsessed with these vests as we are. That’s because, at every step along the way, we asked friends and family for help with the look and feel of the vest, the color.. even the tagline, “vests with benefits!” It’s only fitting that we’re now asking for support to get this party started. 

But don’t take our word for it! Check out some of our Chicago friends struttin' their stuff in an ishi vest prototype.

Risks and challenges

To minimize the risks and to be sure we can deliver what we promise, we have already developed our first prototype with the fabric production facility in Gujarat. We have selected the fabrics, buttons, even the thread! However, working internationally brings challenges - like communication and coordinating timing. We know you can’t wait to sport your new ishi swag and we’ve done our best to foresee any issues (we even added some cushion for that), but we just ask that you be flexible with us during our first go-around.

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Questions about this project? Check out the FAQ

Support

  1. Select this reward

    Pledge $5 or more About $5

    “friend of ishi” -- Short on cash but like what you see? Every little bit helps us get this party started! As a thank you, we’ll list you as a “friend of ishi” on our new website (optional).

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  2. Select this reward

    Pledge $10 or more About $10

    “ishi vest guest” - invite to Chicago launch party + set of 3 ishi buttons. We will list you as an “ishi vest guest” -- plus, with your ishi pin, you’ll be ready to attend in style. Launch Party will be on Friday, October 18, 2013.

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    Limited 3 backers
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    Pledge $25 or more About $25

    “ishi gifter: holy sh*t notebooks” -- Not ready for a vest? We still love you! Grab a set of 3 ultra-earth-friendly, hand-stitched notebooks, cover made from dried (& treated!) elephant dung and paper made with organic cotton. Inspired by one intrepid paper-maker’s journey through Indian temples - holy sh*t, y’all, these are so cool!

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    Pledge $30 or more About $30

    "ishi gifter: scarf” -- Scoop up a fair trade, organic scarf in one of 6 limited-supply ishi colors (first come, first served)

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    Reward no longer available 40 backers
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  5. Select this reward

    Pledge $40 or more About $40

    NEW: "Holiday ishi infinity scarf" Wear 2 ways! Discretely button it at the ends, for a hip infinity loop style -- or, keep it long for a standard (fair trade + naturally-dyed) neck-hugger.

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    Pledge $55 or more About $55

    “ishi trendsetter” -- Pre-order an ishi vest (this package includes 1 vest in a color of your choice, first come first served), and be the first of your friends to wear one. Sizes come in S, M, SLIM (medium length, slim width), L, XL, XXL

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    Reward no longer available 145 backers
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  7. Select this reward

    Pledge $60 or more About $60

    "ishilicious, SF (dinner only)" -- Hey west coasters! Wanna celebrate with us, but don't need any ishi products? Grab a seat at our sustainable, farm to table dinner in San Francisco (Sat. Oct. 26th) with the ishi founders. Too delicious to pass up!

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  8. Select this reward

    Pledge $75 or more About $75

    “ishi trendsetter, plus” -- You pick! 1 awesome ishi vest - AND - your choice of either 1 fair trade, organic ishi scarf - OR - 3 ultra-earth-friendly ishi notebooks.

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    Limited 64 backers
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  9. Select this reward

    Pledge $75 or more About $75

    NEW: "Holiday ishi swag bag" Snag an ishi vest + set of awesome ishi swag (3 ishi notebooks & 3 story pins). Ships by early December & makes a great gift!

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    Limited 2 backers
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  10. Select this reward

    Pledge $85 or more About $85

    “NEW: ishi holiday gifter - vest + infinity scarf"

    Late to the party? We got you! Grab a timeless ishi vest plus our signature "wear it both ways" fair trade, naturally-dyed "infinity scarf." Best yet? You’ll have 'em both by early December, in time to rock your holidays. Happy vestivus, y'all.

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  11. Select this reward

    Pledge $90 or more About $90

    **ALL THE ISHI** -- Why stop at a vest? With “ALL THE ISHI,” you’ll get 1 vest, 1 fair trade, organic scarf, 1 ishi notebook, and a pin.

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  12. Select this reward

    Pledge $100 or more About $100

    "ishilicious for two, SF (dinner only)" -- Hey west coasters! Wanna celebrate with us, but don't need any ishi products? Grab *two seats* at our sustainable, farm to table dinner in San Francisco (Sat. Oct. 26th) with the ishi founders. Dinner is better with friends!

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    Limited 1 backer
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  13. Select this reward

    Pledge $110 or more About $110

    “ishi sustainer” -- Join us for a Chicago reception before our launch party (the second or third weekend in October) with farm-to-table appetizers and deliciously paired beverages - complete with the ishi founders and a whole lotta gratitude. While you’re there, pick out an ishi gift (your choice of either a vest - OR - a set of scarf, notebook, and pin).

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  14. Select this reward

    Pledge $120 or more About $120

    “ishi delicious, SF” -- Join us for a sustainable, farm to table dinner in San Francisco (the evening of Saturday Oct 26, 2013) with the ishi founders, and your choice of either a vest - OR - a set of scarf, notebook, and pin. Trust us, this will be too delicious to pass up.

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    Limited 2 backers
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  15. Select this reward

    Pledge $225 or more About $225

    “ishi delicious for 2, SF” -- Dinner is better with a friend! 2 tickets for our unique farm to table dining experience (the evening of Saturday Oct 26, 2013) + everything from "ALL THE ISHI."

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Funding period

- (34 days)