With the popularity of the TV show Yellowstone, it makes you wonder if the show’s success can be credited to the characters, or due to the American idea of generations of family deeply rooted in the legacy of their land and the teamwork of each generation devoting their lives to what matters most: family, community, and stewarding American soil.
If you’re looking for an answer to this question, it is best to start with real life examples like that of Red Land Cotton and the family behind their American-made products. Three generations of Yeagers have lived on and worked the northern Alabama land while chasing the dreams of bringing back American industry and producing heirloom quality, farm-to-home linens.
The Family Economy
The long-lost notion of the family economy is not necessarily an American standard; it has its roots stretching across the world. But it is an idea that often flourished in the American-dream environment where a stable economy and financial, as well as social, mobility were always on the table for anyone willing to dedicate a little sweat and time to their business. For thousands of years it was the family economy that provided the values and foundation upon which a flourishing business could be established and expanded. The family economy is where working together, caring for each other’s needs, faith, culture, work ethic, and love are cultivated and passed on to the next generation.
Modern society and the industrial age in so many ways drove a wedge into family life, separating the parent from child, family from home, and prioritizing corporate values over those of the family. There was no need for self-sufficient entrepreneurship, and no place for independent family units. Running a family business zippers all these things back together, giving individuals a family legacy.
Heirloom Quality & American Made
“From a bed sheet passed down from the 1920s, we reverse engineered the original weave construction and yarn size to bring you linens that are truly heirloom-inspired.”
Grown from the hard and fickle red clay soil of northern Alabama, Red Land Cotton pours every ounce of expertise into the careful planting, growing, and harvesting of all their raw materials. Their fields are rain-fed, and their cotton harvested with up-to-date, sustainable farming practices that protect the land. From there, the cotton is custom-ginned, so they have control over every aspect of the process and the quality of the end product.
Things don’t last like they used to, and it’s a complete mystery as to why we’ve accepted this reality. You’d think, in the age of eco-friendly, climate change, reduce, reuse, recycle, there would be a newfound revolution for the manufacture of goods that last. But it seems that even the people shouting “save the planet” continue to buy products that have been shipped from the other side of the world, manufactured under unrestricted environmental regulations, and produced with the intent to fall apart so you’ll have to buy another.
But Red Land Cotton believes in products that stand the test of time. We are so excited to be partnering with Red Land Cotton for our Knead November giveaway! They have graciously donated some tea towels and one of their wonderful aprons to help make your kitchen beautiful!
5 Questions with Anna from Red Land Cotton
1. Many companies say that they can’t compete in the market unless they manufacture products in foreign countries, alleviating the cost burden. How have you been able to find success when so many state this is a challenge that cannot be overcome?
Our transparent and sustainable domestic manufacturing is our strength. Our value is in the quality of the product and the story we tell of the pathway our cotton takes from seed to the final stitch to our customer’s door. I can understand if a company was simply making a “product” all they could focus on might cost as their differentiator. We are selling more than a product and our customers see value in that. We try to keep our costs as low as possible but “price” is not our focus and our brand is more than just a product.
2. This might be a little vague, but what does American-made mean to you and your family? What does that look like for your family on a daily basis?
For us American Made is truly about becoming sustainable and self-sufficient. We all saw the complete breakdown of supply chains and scarcity of resources in 2020 and 2021. America needs to make her own goods and we have been outsourcing for too long. This has made us weak and vulnerable. I know it’s easy to look at computer chip manufacturing and steel manufacturing and say “we need to bring that home” as it’s obviously important to our infrastructure. But, as we saw in 2020… so are textiles. We donated cloth for masks (which at the time we thought might be helpful) and we donated labor to help make these masks. Our spinning manufacturer worked to help make the cotton swabs for tests that were in short supply. All of this was a scramble to get resources we have farmed out to other nations because of cheap labor and unregulated industries. This could not be a more perfect indicator of the importance of being AMERICAN MADE.
3. What are your favorite Red Land Cotton products you use in your own home?
The Sheet Sets and the Classic Quilt are my absolute favorites! I also use our Legacy Tri-Color Throw every evening as I finish up work on the couch. I’m a snuggler by nature! (LOL)
4. Outside of work ethic and entrepreneurship, what are the essential elements to making the family economy work?
To me, it’s “stick-to-it-ness” and creativity. The challenges that come your way are oftentimes very daunting but if you can look at it from a different perspective and face the doubt with confidence that you can overcome with God’s help — there is nothing you can’t do!
5. At AmericanMom we often talk about the importance of your local community. Gone are the days of being on a first name basis with your butcher, pharmacist and grocery clerk for most. You’ve dug your boots into your roots and community by building your business in your hometown. What is the value of having that immediate, familiar community? How does Red Land Cotton hope to become a part of that local community?
We’ve been given the opportunity to impact local communities across the United States and that is a wonderful privilege. Not only can we impact our local community with jobs and sponsoring homecoming night for the local football team but we can also bring awareness to rural areas like our own and their importance to the broader economy. We have manufacturing partners in 15+ cities across the United States. Most of these are small towns. Every purchase from our small business impacts these communities down the line. THAT is the true impact of shopping small and knowing where your products come from!