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Sword & Plough's Notes from the Field: April 2017

Posted on April 30, 2017 by Sword & Plough | 0 Comments

Sword & Plough: Repurposed for a Purpose


Every month we are committed to reflecting on where we’ve been and where we are going. This month was a wild ride in a completely awe inspiring way. If you followed us on Facebook or on Instagram, you saw we started April after a few days spent in New York at Eileen Fisher. The Eileen Fisher Foundation selected several woman-owned small businesses to provide mentorship and development immersion. We joined five other incredible brands and chronicled our experiences in one of our first Facebook Live videos.

A few days later, we entered the FedEx Small Business Grant Contest. In a few short days, with the support of the Sword & Plough community, we were named one of the FedEx Small Business Grant Top 100 Finalist. We are so excited to announce that we were just named the Grand Prize winner! We are looking forward to putting the grant funding toward hiring a veteran to help Sword & Plough with inventory and supply chain management. We are also planning to expand our Brand Champion Program!

We didn’t stop celebrating our FedEx selection, as we immediately headed into our birthday week recognition. It has been four years of non stop growth. We spent every day sharing our favorite highlights. And of course, we felt it was better to give than to receive, so we gave away four of our favorite products. Each giveaway represented a product we introduced in a given year of our growth. Our Sword & Plough community overwhelmed us with their patriotic submissions of who inspires them, from service members, veterans, and military spouses to close friends and family members.

And as we embark on our fifth year, we welcome another new product, our 50 caliber brass rings, just in time for Mother’s Day. The rings come in a set of three and are handcrafted by Shanna Rodenberg, a U.S. Army veteran and artist. They are going to make a great Mother’s Day gift and we plan on giving one to our Mom! They are classic, timeless, and make the perfect accessory for any outfit.

Part of what makes a gift from Sword & Plough special is that it both supports veteran jobs and gives back to veterans through our 10% for vets commitment, where we donate 10% of our profits each year to veteran organizations. We work hard to create economic opportunities for veterans and are proud we have supported 65 veteran jobs, while repurposing over 35,000 pounds of military surplus. By repurposing textiles, we do our part to reduce the large quantities of water, energy, fertilizers, pesticides and emissions involved in manufacturing new textiles. In addition to up-cycling surplus fabrics into our products, we employ environmental manufacturing processes such as 100% domestic sourcing of all fabrics in order to reduce fuel consumption and emissions during transport. We also incorporate recycled materials within our packaging. As the world celebrated Earth Day on April 22, 2017, we at Sword & Plough work hard to honor our planet every day.

It is hard to believe so much happened in the month April. We can’t wait to update you next month!


The Sword & Plough team


Posted in 50 caliber jewelry, brass jewelry, brass rings, Earth Day, Eileen Fisher, Fedex, Fedex Small Business Grant, social mission, stackable rings, surplus material, Upcycled Products, upcycling, upcycling companies, women in business

6 Simple Things You Can Do on Earth Day and Every Day to be More Sustainable!

Posted on April 22, 2017 by Emily Nunez | 0 Comments

Earth Day


At Sword & Plough, every day is Earth Day! We are a socially and environmentally conscious brand that works hard to bring you a high quality, stylish product that gives back to the veteran community with minimal effect on the environment.

We do this by...

Manufacturing 100% in the United States: Supporting local economies and American jobs is an important part of our mission and we have no intention of moving production overseas. By manufacturing 100% in the United States, Sword & Plough is able to significantly reduce our carbon emissions.

Incorporating repurposed military surplus material into almost every one of our products: By repurposing textiles, we do our part to reduce the huge quantities of water, energy, fertilizers, pesticides and emissions involved in manufacturing new textiles. Did you know that manufacturing with recycled goods allows for the consumption of up to 95% less energy than manufacturing exclusively with new raw materials?

In addition to up-cycling surplus fabrics into our products, we also employ environmental manufacturing processes such as 100% domestic sourcing of all fabrics. The majority of our leather is also produced in the United States! Domestic sourcing helps reduce fuel consumption and emissions during transport.

Incorporating recycled materials within our packaging: Did you know that recycling one ton of cardboard saves over 9 cubic yards of landfill space? Recycling cardboard cuts the pollution caused by making new cardboard in half!

Military Surplus

Here are six easy ways you can be more environmentally sustainable every day.

1. Reuse! - Whenever possible, try to reuse things to cut down on unnecessary waste. Perfect opportunities to reuse products include grocery shopping with a reusable tote bag (such as our Sword & Plough Screen Printed Tote), using your own reusable thermos and water bottle (instead of disposable items from restaurants and coffeeshops), and purchasing capsule wardrobe items that you will enjoy wearing over and over vs. buying into the fast fashion industry. Rent the Runway recently stated that “In one year, the average American buys 64 clothing items, throws away 82 pounds of clothing and wears only 20% of their wardrobe.”

2. Buy American Made - By purchasing products that are made in the United States, you not only support American jobs but also cut down the increased fuel consumption and carbon emissions involved in overseas transport.

3. Plant something - Plant a tree! Did you know that trees help purify the air we breathe by removing carbon from the atmosphere? Don’t have a backyard? Consider donating to an organization that will plant a tree for you. Here are a few organizations that will help you plant a tree: Retree, A Living Tribute, and One Tree Planted.

4. Turn off the lights - Remember to turn off lights when you don’t need them. Using LED lights is the most energy efficient light bulb choice.

5. Limit food waste - Did you know that the majority of food waste happens in homes? Limit the amount of food you throw away by only purchasing what you need, planning meals in advance, and finding creative ways to preserve foods. Our friends at Rubies in the Rubble suggest freezing herbs in butter for cooking, freezing ripened bananas and using them in “banana ice cream,” and preserving fruits and vegetables for a fun at-home activity.

6. Bike or walk to work - By biking, running, or walking to work, we can significantly reduce air pollution while also getting a great workout and vitamin c. According to a shocking stat from a recent World Market blog post, “If you can stay off the road just one day a week, you’ll reduce greenhouse gas emissions by an average of 795 pounds per year.”


Earth Day


Posted in earth day, recycled material, repurposed, repurposed for a purpose, social mission, surplus material, Upcycled Products, upcycling, upcycling companies


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