It takes more energy than you might think to produce 50 floor-length gowns covered in gold beads sewn on by hand. Okay, sure, it actually sounds like quite a lot of energy, when I put it like that. But even so, there’s more to it than you’re probably picturing, and I’m not just talking about the labour. When you’ve got ten manufacturers working around the clock to get these things finished in time for an internationally televised gala, the damages of lighting, air conditioning and espresso making quickly begin to add up.
If this keeps up, I’m going to transition the joint to commercial solar power. Melbourne might not have the best climate for it, but we don’t actually need that much power for what we do, relatively speaking. I mean, it’s not like we’re operating industrial fridges or manufacturing equipment or whatnot. It’s just a few salty fashion school drop-outs getting together to make a buck creating stage costumes, albeit as part-owners of a nicely appointed studio.
Regardless, the power bills are stacking up, and it’s becoming harder to preach the green credentials of our operation. As many reclaimed beads and fabric seconds we make use of, we’re still reliant on environmentally unsound energy, and paying a fortune for it at that. Like I said, it’s not like we need a 100kW system, but the benefits of solar power for business are not lost on us.
The upfront cost is a tad daunting, but I think we could get the television to front it if we pull out all the stops on these dresses. They said at the meeting that they were looking to recruit a costuming department to be housed off-site, and hinted that we could be in the running if we got it right for the gala. I wonder what the right way to play this is? Do we write the solar scheme into our contract, assuming we’re offered one? I’m sure it could be positioned as a plus for them in terms of long-term savings in operating costs.