Why support artisans?

  • by Admin Ithemba

When we first started, many told us that artisanal craft is a sunset industry, that sooner or later mass production would take over as a quick and easy replacement, but we held strong to our belief and wanted to help people see that craft has instrinsic value. We continue to believe so, especially in light of our commitment to make fashion more sustainable.

When it comes to sustainable fashion, reducing the need to throw and buy again is crucial. Artisans are skilled labourers who work with traditional techniques. These techniques have been around for centuries, passed down from a time when machine made, “disposable” fast fashion did not yet exist. Meaning, artisan hand-crafted garments generally lasts longer, and can also be mended if they experience slight wear and tear.

Craft is inherently slow because the entire process of production is tied to variables like serendipities of weather, harvest cycles, religious festivals, celebratory customs, and the heavy, inherent reliance on the artisan themselves.

On top of this, many brands that sell artisan made clothes work around the philosophy of slow. They value the exquisiteness of handmade pieces that are made to last a long time and are intentional in their commitment to sell what they value. This means their design process has to work a little differently too. One way we show respect for craft is to reinterpret textile heritage into prints that tell stories of where and why they are made. A lot of thought goes into this process, as the entire life cycle of the garment is taken into consideration. This is why the complete turnaround time of production can sometimes take up to half a year. Slow fashion is a response to fast fashion, and artisanal craft is slowing down fast fashion quite literally.


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