My Jamaica's treasure chest
Keisha Hill, Gleaner Writer
Eva Miles, chief executive officer at My Jamaica, a subsidiary of Sun Island Jamaica Limited, says the company was formed out of the desire to showcase any and everything Jamaican-made.
Located in the Liguanea Plaza, the name, she said, allowed them to make changes to the product line based on the feedback from their customers and their need to offer new products as they become available.
"The main objective at the start was to get our brand of Sun Island T-shirts and apparel into a busy retail space, as so many Jamaicans were unaware of the wide range of products that Sun Island offers," Miles said.
"We also wanted to offer Jamaican craft and souvenirs and become a one-stop shopping experience for anyone travelling abroad or visiting. The response from our customers has been overwhelming as Jamaicans are thrilled to buy a Jamaican T-shirt that has actually been made in Jamaica, and if they need a little something extra, we have our craft and souvenirs," Miles added.
Sun Island Jamaica Limited is a Jamaican manufacturing and distributing company with a wide range of Jamaican-made souvenirs and apparel that is expertly styled and designed locally.
"We compete with cheap imports, but we have continued to manufacture at a time when it is so difficult to compete. What a difference in our economy if every Jamaican made an effort to buy locally made items," Miles said.
The company works closely with Jamaican suppliers throughout the island, with the aim of creating products that the customer wants. "We are pleased to buy Jamaican craft, souvenirs, wood carvings, ceramics, watercolour paintings, clothing, jewellery, dolls, books and much more from so many hard-working, decent Jamaicans trying to earn an honest living. The more we sell, the more they produce, which helps to feed so many families," Miles said.
There is no substitute when it comes to finding those hidden gems or sights that really are worth braving the crowds during the holiday season. This Christmas, you can give authentic Jamaican gifts from the huge selection available at My Jamaica. Shoppers will be able to select from hand-made bags, sarongs, gifts for him and her, souvenirs and gifts for children.
"Our choices are based on quality, beauty, our customer's expectations, and on the price being affordable," Miles said.
Some of the brands include Sun Island Jamaica, Callaloo, Mijan, Bette of Jamaica and Sharon Mckain. Some of the T-Shirt brands include Usain Bolt, Culcha, Rock Steady, Third World, Sun Island Jamaica Wear, Bob Marley and Red Stripe. The jewellery inventory is also quite impressive.
The art and craft section includes works by David Pinto, Gene Pearson, Robert Campbell, Frazer's Ceramics, Touch by VLS, C. Hoilett, Mustard Seed, Nicole Brown, Andy Jefferson, Pierre-Henry, Creole, Bellina, Contemporary Caribbean, Island Dolls, and many more.
"We have remained competitive by being realistic about the spending power of our customers. We try our best to source well, and if we cannot sell an item at full retail mark-up, then we take a smaller margin. If we are not moving with the times, we will be left behind. We continue to closely monitor market trends - styles, colours, winners and losers, to ensure that our customers become regular My Jamaica customers," Miles said.