M’sian social enterprise for ecological active clothing – Health Guild News


Started in 2017, Love, light, lemons it was an idea of ​​Raisa Gabrielli, born of a passion to help all communities that need it in Malaysia.

“Given how I grew up in a family that understands the importance of returning, I knew I also wanted to elevate the lives of needy communities with every sale,” Raisa shared with Vulcan Post.

It’s unrealistic to want to help everyone at once, and understanding that, Raisa has found a way to fix it. Each year, on the other hand, it returns to a group of beneficiaries, whether refugees, orphans, stray dogs or the blind.

Making sustainable active clothing while returning to needs / Image credit: Love, Light, Lemons

Realize the ugly side of fast fashion

“In 2016 I saw The True Cost and as a result, my view of the fashion industry changed drastically. Shortly afterwards, I began dissecting everyday elements to assess their impact on the environment and society. It turns out that a shocking amount of everyday commercial items contain a lot of unsafe chemicals, ”he explained.

“For example, most commercial candles really are harmful for health when used in the long term, due to the content of carcinogenic chemicals ”.

As a candle enthusiast, Raisa knew she had to switch to safer options. But I also knew that the safest options were scarce or not so affordable.

Rasia ecological candle / Image credit: Love, Light, Lemons

So she rolled up her sleeves and did weeks of R&D on how to make eco-friendly candles that later became a line of products she prepared herself. These candles are made of pure soy wax, high quality essential oils and a wick of your choice.

Benefit the needs and the Earth

In addition to candles, Love, Light, Lemons also produced handmade clay bowls and active clothing made with recycling. especially. This is the chronology of Raisa’s projects and what sustainable products she sold:

Course Products Beneficiaries
2017 Ecological candles The Association of the Blind of Malaysia
2018 Traditional handmade bags (made in Myanmar) The Rohingya Education Center, Klang
2019 Handmade clay bowls Champion Home Care Center, Puchong
2020 Active clothing with global certification standard organic textile made with 100% cotton and some with recycled batik belts The Strays of Shah Alam

When curing products, Raisa would first analyze the relevance of the product to the market, how many existing competitors there are, production costs, where it can sell the final product, and so on.

Because she makes some of these products herself, R&D can last from several weeks (candles) to several months (active clothing).

Uphill cycling especially fabric for active clothing / Image credit: Love, Light, Lemons

Another reason why Raisa dedicates a year to each cause is that this is not her full-time job, but she hopes to grow enough Love, Light, Lemons to be able to take on several projects a year. Raisa is currently a freelance writer and yoga instructor.

As for how the profits are divided, it depends on the project. Although their projects last a year, the beneficiaries are not funded on a monthly basis. Instead, they will be given a lump sum once the project is completed, although Raisa is working to get monthly funding.

Beneficiaries Profit divisions
The Association of the Blind of Malaysia 50-50
Rohingya Education Center 10% of each sale
Champion Home Care Center 500-600 RM (was an amount set by the orphanage to buy school supplies)
The Strays of Shah Alam So far € 62 (100% of donations)

Active clothing is produced by refugees from Afghanistan (The craft shop under The Shaddai Life2Life Program) and Myanmar (Mang Tha under Tanma Dones).

This year’s monthly income has ranged from RM0 to RM 328.90 for Love, Light, Lemons, but earlier this year, Raisa had the opportunity to become a seller of the Sunny Side Up Market at The Row, and over the course of 2 days, he earned RM 1,513 in sales and RM 26 in donations.

Nu Vung, one of Mang Tha’s tailors / Image Credit: Love, Light, Lemons

A blessing in disguise

“While working with refugees from Afghanistan and Myanmar, language barriers sometimes occur,” Raisa shared with Vulcan Post. Because of this, poor communication occurs, which caused an excess of stock for active clothing last year.

However, Raisa found a solution and approached Stitches i Bona Juju earlier this year, local brands specializing in embroidery and tie-dye respectively, to produce together a line of seasonal products, The Lunar Capsule.

“The dead stocks were dyed in a tie using only plant-based ingredients (such as blueberries, turmeric, red wine, etc.) and embroidered with symbols representative of the festive season we honored.”

See more opportunities in the field of active clothing

Launch of a new product line to commemorate Chinese New Year / Image Credit: Love, Light, Lemons

Although Raisa does not adapt to the trends when choosing which product it wants to introduce, it keeps an active track of what is missing in the Malaysian market. According to its latest discoveries, it is 100% organic cotton active clothing certified by GOTS.

Therefore, he plans to continue producing active clothing for a while, because he also intends to maintain his relationship with The Craft Shop and Mang Tha.

He is currently working on the production of unisex muscle tanks with a especially collar, reversible unisex shorts (one side especially and the other cotton), with ballerina caps especially details and especially bandanes.

No beneficiaries have yet been decided for this next project, as Raisa finds it difficult to choose at a time when so many communities need help.

Of her own challenges, Raisa shared: “Whenever I invest in a project, I use money I have earned or saved. In turn, my marketing budget is low, which means less exposure, especially when compared to other companies / social brands with a cause. So settling down was, and may be, still a struggle. “

“I am grateful to have broken this year and I certainly plan to invest more in marketing so I can make a monthly donation in one way or another,” he concluded.

  • You can find more information about Love, light, lemons here, and browse their products here.
  • You can read about more social enterprises we’ve covered here.

Featured Image Credit: Raisa Gabrielli, founder of Love, Light, Lemons

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