During my travels, I would come across brilliant craftsmen who are really good at making functional or decorative pieces out of the earthy elements or materials obtained naturally from plants. They are often the ones who live close to nature and has all the time in the world to study and master a form of craftsmanship. Sometimes I wish the local art and crafts could be made known to the world. And perhaps these artisans, especially those living in the less developed countries, could make an earnest living out of it. I believe that each of them has a story to tell and their stories are woven into the pieces they have created by their calloused hands.
Who knows that today this idea was actualised by a team of passionate people from Artisan & Fox who wish to help talented makers – silversmiths and weavers – to have access to the global world. Now, you could not only purchase these unique crafts ethically through them, but you will also get to know your Artisan and their stories. Have you wondered who made your clothes and accessories? Would your perception of consumerism changed if you know that your ring was handmade by a Nepali silversmith who is supporting his family of three after a recent earthquake? Do you know what your purse is made up of? Is it made up of chemically-soaked threads made in the factory? There’s power in your purchases and each conscious purchase you made goes a long way.
This pair of Kona Earrings, for instance, was made by Ojiko in Kibera, Kenya. I don’t think I would have a chance to visit Kenya anytime soon these pair of brass earrings, albeit plain-looking, is special to me. It was fully made from upcycled brass by an artisan who lives in a different time zone from me. I wonder where he stays and how his workshop would look like.
I love how these earrings look on me, and I wish I could capture of a photo of me wearing it, but it seems like the camera can’t capture the brilliance of it unless I take an up-close picture of it. I love timeless and minimalistic pieces like these which is suitable for any occasion. It works great if you have a short hairstyle.
Functional pieces like a clutch or purse is an essential in my wardrobe. OROS Loom clutch was handsewn by Alfredo who is living in Oaxaca, Mexico. Some of these weavers are weaving to keep this form of weaving and sewing traditions alive. Animals get extinct and so does art too. Would life be duller as each tradition dies out?
Conscious shopping has made me realised that buying isn’t always about me. It doesn’t necessarily make me feel satisfied or happy because material things will never make a person feeling happy permanently. But if your conscious purchase empowers someone who needed that extra strength and encouragement from the world, wouldn’t that made you realise how the seeds of happiness could actually be sown?
Scatter the seeds of happiness today.