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July 27, 2021
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How a fashion enthusiast is enabling conscious shopping using a no-code directory

We love highlighting and celebrating people that are doing awesome things with no-code. But it makes us truly happy when people take the power of no-code and use it for good.

So when we came across Daniel and his sustainable brand directory site built entirely with no-code tools, we jumped at the chance to hear more and share the great work he’s doing.

Here’s his story.

My name is Daniel Akang. I started a directory of sustainable brands called Eco-Catalogue.

I'm a freelance graphic designer and I’m wrapping up my Master’s degree in architecture. While my architecture degree isn’t particularly fun, I’m super interested in reading about blockchain tech and trying out no-code tools.

I also started a newsletter called Bare Maximum where I interview creatives like designers and musicians.

As a part of my degree, I did a course on Environmental Impact Analysis (EIA). It got me started on a journey that brought me to this point.

The idea for Eco-Catalogue

During the peak of the lockdown, I developed an interest in fashion.

There’s been a lot of talk recently about sustainability and greenwashing. Greenwashing basically means to conceal bad sustainability practices or to mislead the public into thinking your business is working for the good of the environment when it actually isn’t.

I first learned about it through a couple of my friends (shout-out to Odunayo Ojo of The Fashion Archive, Damilare of NYTypical, and others).

I didn't know what no-code was until I happened to follow Sharath Kuruganty, the co-founder of ShoutOut. He tweets a lot about no-code and his work inspired me to begin doing my own no-code research.

I wanted to figure out which tools would work for me, and settle on an idea to build. I didn’t want this project to be a build-and-dump experiment. I wanted it to be an extension of myself. Then the idea hit me! All the time I spent talking about sustainability, I never thought to highlight brands that actually do have sustainable practices.

Building Eco-Catalogue

My goal was simple: to help people discover sustainable brands in the shortest amount of time.

I found out about Softr from a project I saw on Product Hunt, and began building there. Within two days, I had a working prototype. Apart from making the site on Softr, I used Airtable for the database, and Namecheap to purchase the domain name.

Because of how easy and intuitive Softr and Airtable are, I didn’t need to watch tutorials before getting started. It was such a fun experience building something and watching it come to life.

I shared the site with a couple of friends and sent it to everyone on my Bare Maximum newsletter. Most of the feedback I received was positive. Special thank you to those that helped me build and refine the site: Toni, Ushie, Webster, Daminiyi, Tobechi, Josh, Shak, Mahmud, and everyone that sent in feedback before the launch.

I officially launched Eco-Catalogue on the 24th of May 2021, and I’m so happy with the feedback it has gotten. Less than a month after our launch, Product Hunt even tweeted about it!


Next steps

I do have plans to start a blog to talk about topics related to sustainability, but I'm taking my time with that. It’s important information, and I need to make sure I communicate it appropriately. The fact that people don't talk about the environmental problems caused by the fashion industry is alarming!

I realized that many people may not care about the numbers, they just need a simple way to shop green. Ease is a great motivator! With Eco-Catalogue, I want people to find what they were looking for quickly, and so far, the average time spent on the site is about 30 seconds. I guess my plan is working!


Thank you for sharing your story with us, Daniel! You can follow his journey on Twitter here.

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No-Code Fundamentals: Getting started with no-code

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Build a business, launch a side-project, or finally start that idea you've been sitting on, without writing code.

Join a passionate and skilled group of makers, creators and entrepreneurs in this immersive, cohort-based course. Over 5 weeks, Makerpad's expert instructors, Ben Tossell and Amie Pollack, will give you the foundational skills you need to build and share your idea with the world.

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