The social business works in Zanzibar and turns used wine bottles from the hotel resorts into beautiful jars and lanterns with hand-carved lids and stands. Their selection criteria are relatively straightforward, just that most who work for Chako should be women.
Mme Aek is a highly skilled artisan specializing in bamboo weaving. She lives in a farmers’ village around 75 km outside Lao’s capital, Vientianne. Access to international markets for her beautiful baskets brings her family and the other artisans in the compound an essential extra earning.
Soft scarves in fantastic colors and noble designs, handwoven by women from the village of Banteay Chhmar in Cambodia. The artisan group comprises 30 vulnerable women who have no schooling but, thanks to practical training on the loom or in the sewing studio, have a regular income that gives their family financial security.
Jane started painting very early in her childhood and has fond memories of spending time in her parent’s garden in Seoul. The beautiful environment inspired her to draw and color. Living on three different continents strongly reflects her identity as an artist. Jane is led by her intuitive act of searching, discovering, and capturing a narrative story unfolding on the canvas.
For generations, her family’s business has been dedicated to empowering Indian artisan families, especially women, to provide them an opportunity to work and fend for themselves. Abby aims to preserve traditional crafts, employ local labor, and encourage the new generation of weavers to sustainably carry on and conserve their age-old family traditions of the trade.
Since she was a child, Nina has had a passion for bead weaving. By coincidence, she met an American from the U.S. Peace Corps who encouraged her to start a business with her unique jewelry made of hundreds of glass beads. Nina is Ukrainian and wants to be an “ambassador” for the folkcraft that, to this day, is an integral part of Ukrainian culture and national identity.
Asma’s purpose is to maintain Lebanon’s heritage. She, therefore, creates products with a modern twist, but their design is rooted in cultural traditions. Excellent craftsmanship is an essential element in her masterpieces of craftsmanship. Asma is from Beirut, Lebanon. She is a mother of two and studied interior and furniture design in Beirut and Florence, where she got her master’s degree.
Hathay Bunano, meaning handmade or hand knitted in Bangla, is a non-profit fair trade organization in Bangladesh. Its mission is to create fairly paid, good quality, flexible and local employment for rural women who are poor and often disadvantaged. Teaching women to knit and providing employment that fits in with the rhythm of rural life stems the tide of economic migration to the cities and keeps families together.
Jenny has been working in the graphic design and home textile industry. The impulse to create is always within her, but sharing it with the world brings her the most joy. Her background in the mass market design industry has helped her understand the significance of creating her unique expression. Her prints are constantly evolving, and above all else, she seeks originality.
Originally from the US, Britta Kürzi decided to do an actual immersion program when she moved to Switzerland. She enrolled in Ecole Chocolat for a six-month Bean to Bar chocolate course and built a tiny chocolate factory in her apartment. Every week, she learned to create new chocolate batches. She then followed this passion around the world to learn about cacao and chocolate making.
Growing up in a historical town in the heart of Hungary she discovered her great interest in the arts and crafts and started her artistic education at the age of 15. Eszter Imre’s most beloved material is porcelain, in which many of her designs are created. Her attention is to show the best of the material’s nature and visually describe functions with elegance and simplicity.
The idea of creating handmade candles was born in 2014, out of Julie Clarke’s passion for natural candles, botanical fragrance and general wellbeing. She trained in the art under a master candle maker in Wales, and now uses bespoke botanical fragrances in her work. Every candle is hand-poured into stoneware or porcelain vessels that can be reused after the candle’s life.
Akia Obrist grew up in northern Switzerland. At 15, she knew she wanted to become a ceramist and completed her apprenticeship in Rheinfelden. Since then, she has remained true to her profession – creating ceramics has been a continual thread running through her life.
SEP Jordan works with women artisans who are living in Jordan’s Jerash Camp. The highly skilled artists hand-embroider shawls, made of luxurious Italian fabrics, with traditional Palestinian, Biblical and Islamic geometric patterns. SEP Jordan has an emotional and economic impact on the lives of over 500 women and their families, who happen to be refugees.
Sabeth Holland paints straight from the heart, communicating her emotions through her work in an authentic and direct manner. The artist uses her fingers and palms to directly apply oils, pigments and real gold to canvas. The beauty lies within the coincidental structure that comes with these unique strokes.