in the workshop

sustaining our small business in the emerging economy

fact: almost everything cost more these days. as the costs continue to rise, we all feel the squeeze. at duross & langel we are choosing to view both our long and short term future through the lens of sustainability. 

noun: sustainability

  1. the ability to be maintained at a certain rate or level. "the sustainability of economic growth"

  2. avoidance of the depletion of natural resources in order to maintain an ecological balance.

while most of our raw materials and packaging, as well as delivery cost continue to rise, we are currently holding the line on retail pricing. why? simple. no one knows how much longer costs will continue to rise, and any knee jerk reaction of raising prices based on the assumption that we deserve to maintain our current profit margin is hubris. sometimes the best way to thrive in an inflationary market is to find a way to cut overhead. if eventually we are forced to raise our prices, it should be measured. sustainably. for now we hold the line.

speaking of cutting overhead.. almost two years ago we announced we would be leaving 13th street the beginning of 2023, looking for a location where we can tuck into a quiet, pretty street in a pleasant neighborhood. the process can be both exhilarating and anxiety producing yet we find the experience worthy of the effort. after all, we are creating the framework for the next ten to twenty years of our lives. our intention is to stay within easy walking distance of 13th street for your convenience.

on a more personal note: my 60th birthday is fast approaching. i've always imagined i would hand make duross & langel until i physically could not. why "retire" when i love coming into the workshop? sure, i love reading and doing nothing, traveling, lying on a beach or spending an afternoon binging netflix, but our team, our brand, offers me a unique purpose. i love the activity, the comaraderie, affection, personal fulfillment and the joy it conveys. please know how much we are all so very grateful for your support, and for the opportunities that your support affords our lives.


Refilling Your Empty Bottles

a three minute read that offer's a makers perspective

Our LOW TO ZERO WASTE refilling program launches mid-March 2022. Here is a link to the new site for more detail:

I'm going to hit you with a few numbers that were very helpful to all of us when attempting a clearer understanding of our personal consumption of plastics.

A lot of folks have been expressing their desire to do away with single use plastics. We agree and feel the need to enlarge the conversation and see what's really happening. Best info takes us to 2018, where plastics generation was 35.7 million tons in the United States, 14.5 million  of which came from the packaging of food. Almost all of the food plastic was non-recyclable

The EPA used data from the American Chemistry Council, the National Association for PET Container Resources, and the Association of Plastic Recyclers to measure the recycling of plastic. While overall the amount of recycled plastics is relatively small—three million tons for a 8.7 percent recycling rate in 2018—the recycling of some specific types of plastic containers is more significant.

The recycling rate of PET bottles and jars was 29.1 percent, and the rate for HDPE natural bottles was 29.3 percent in the year 2018. The number for PET and HDPE recycled should be much higher yet so many people still do not recycle.

Products commonly made from recycled PET include new PET bottles and jars, carpet, clothing (*all the stretch materials from yoga pants to those jeans you're wearing), industrial strapping, ropes, most automotive parts, fiberfill for winter jackets and sleeping bags, construction materials, and protective packaging to name a few. HDPE plastics can find new life in plumbing pipes, plastic lumber and flooring, children's toys and a vast range of other products. Fun Fact: did you know that it takes 23 recycled D+L bottles to make one pair of yoga pants?

This is why we use PET and HDPE. It also has the added benefit of lasting decades in our homes if properly clean, sanitized and refilled.

The new website addresses all of our thoughts on directly refilling bottles and why we feel our system best address the legal and ethical responsibilities we hold. We understand that some retailers will refill your bottles, and while we have a retail store, we are registered manufacturers of bath, body and spa products under the category of cosmetics. As such, we have a much higher standard toward efficacy, safety and sanitary practices. We will continue to source new materials in an ever evolving market and strive to improve what we can offer to make this a better planet.

We have the vision. Sometimes it's simply a matter of the market catching up. 

you see, what had happened was..

the world changed overnight.

Since early spring, many people have been coming back into the store to shop. For the most part it's been a great success, especially for those aware of the new configuration. Every now and then however, someone is really really unhappy about the way things are set up. We get it. We do. We just have a limited amount of energy when bulwarking disappointed shoppers. Especially when it gets busy.

Like most of you, we have found that getting through the last couple of years with our sanity in tact has been all about adaptation. Making the best of what we can. As the majority of our business is done by online shoppers (US, Canada and UK) and though custom blending, our priorities had to be re-ordered. We are part of a growing trend toward finding new ways to do business.

Think of the updated store configuration the way you would with your favorite bakery. All the things you love are right in front of you, and the sales associate is there to give you a one-on-one experience with loads of scent pods available for you to sample the aromas.

Once we move to a new location in January 2023 (only a few blocks away.. we will announce when ready), we will add more browsing space and a place to hang out with your dog or stroller while we do what we do. Until then, we hope you will make the best of what we have to offer, and like us, work to be patient and kind when things get crazy busy.

Thanks for rolling with the changes, and for making 2021 our best year ever!

Steve, Sarah + Alli