More Artisanal Treasures
Fair Trade Treasures
Slate+Salt is a mission based brand who specialize in modern, one-of-a-kind pieces. With a focus on preserving traditional techniques and supporting the Fair Trade movement. Providing access to unique, handcrafted products that reflect the journey of the modern woman - pieces that are beautiful, fierce, free-spirited, and most importantly conscious.
Slate+Salt work closely with small social enterprises to facilitate dignified working opportunities in villages around the world affected by extreme poverty. What sets the Slate+Salt mission apart is their unending commitment to providing a worldwide customer base for artisanal treasures found in rural communities. Encouraging customers to explore other cultures and traditions in a socially conscious way.
Slate+Salt believe that by working closely to provide people with access to unique, handcrafted goods, they can help break the cycle of poverty and support communities around the globe. Through Slate+Salt's artisanal treasures found in villages around the world, they hope people will develop a greater appreciation for the world around them.
When you purchase ethically produced artisanal treasures from Slate+Salt, you are positively impacting the world in a number of ways:
• Helping to facilitate dignified working opportunities for makers found in rural impoverished villages around the world. Folks who rely on traditional techniques to produce their artisan handmade goods, which they're always paid a fair wage to create. As a result, these local artisans can support their families and continue to live in their own communities.
• Helping to break the cycle of poverty by supporting fair trade organizations that empower women entrepreneurs and educate children — aiming to break the cycle of extreme poverty. The fair trade movement is focused on providing local artisans with the skills and resources they need to start their own businesses, and they also help to ensure that children have access to quality education. By supporting these programs, you are playing a part in creating a brighter future for underdeveloped nations.
• Helping to restore dignity to the makers who produce Slate+Salt's artisanal treasures with traditional techniques. All of whom take great pride in their work, and appreciate the opportunity to earn a fair wage for their efforts.
The base for artisanal treasures from around the world, Slate+Salt was founded by avid traveller Lyndsay. On her many trips to developing countries, Lyndsay fell in love with not only the people and cultures but also the craftsmanship of pieces that used traditional techniques to create modern designs. Realizing that handcrafted products are far superior to mass-produced items churned out by factories, she saw an opportunity to connect makers in rural villages with a worldwide customer base for artisanal treasures.
Slate+Salt Mission Based Brands
Allpa Peru is on a mission is to create awareness and preserve Peruvian culture through their textile production.
A cooperative with 80 small to midsize workshops located throughout Peru, Allpa Peru develops annual collections of alpaca accessories, like blankets, with modern design work steeped in tradition. Additionally, Allpa is a mission based brand Slate+Salt work closely with to support the growth of artisans in impoverished villages via technical assistance, training and loans. By helping artisan weavers learn and grow, Allpa transforms them into entrepreneurs by providing a worldwide customer base for artisanal treasures.
About Alpaca Fibers
Alpaca fibers have been prized by the Incas for centuries, and today alpaca wool is valued for its exceptional softness, strength, and warmth. Alpaca fiber is also naturally hypoallergenic and resistant to fire and water damage, making it an ideal material for a wide range of garments and products.
Alpacas live free in the Peruvian Andes and are not harmed during shearing. Their soft feet are gentle on grass, and they graze without destroying plant roots. Alpaca is unique among animals for producing up to 28 natural colors, which can be blended into an infinite array of shades from black to chestnut to white. It dyes easily and always retains its luster.
Inspired by the ancient weaving traditions of Ethiopia, Sabahar is a mission based brand who specialize in beautiful, small batch cashmere scarves using natural fibers like silk. Part of the fair trade movement, Sabar believes in providing a worldwide customer base for cashmere scarves hand loomed by local artisans.
In Ethiopia, hand weaving has been a way of life for centuries. In fact, almost all traditional Ethiopian clothing is made on hand looms. And like many trades and crafts, the art of weaving is passed down from generation to generation. Even though the techniques haven't changed much over time, the patterns, colors and designs have become increasingly sophisticated. A weaver can produce one to three cashmere scarves each day depending on how intricate the design is supposed to be.
The beauty of handspun thread is a rare commodity in our quickly changing world of mechanized textile factories. Sabahar's mission it to create respectful, ethical and sustainable work opportunities for artisans in Ethiopia, while showcasing their weavers talents to the world.
Slate+Salt work closely with ironwork artisans found in underprivileged communities surrounding Phnom Penh, Cambodia. Lifting them from extreme poverty via jewelry created from recycled bomb remnants originating from 3+ decades of wartime conflict in the country.
Local artisans skillfully mold these shells into jewelry and accessories — providing a steady source of income for them and their families. While Cambodia has enjoyed years of peace and development since the war ended, today 30% of the population still lives below the poverty line (on less than $1.25 per day).
When you buy an artisan handmade product from these Cambodian jewelry makers, you help facilitate dignified working opportunities for local artisans struggling to find work. Each artisan is paid fairly for their skill and craftsmanship, which in turn provides families in impoverished villages with food and security. A livable income is very important for women in particular as it allows them to raise healthy babies and children while also planning for their future. The designs of these jewelry items take inspiration from Cambodia's rich tapestry, with the purpose of restoring traditional skills back to the country through modern design.
For centuries, Turkish towels have been hand-loomed in Turkey using extra-long, tightly woven fibers. Turkish towels are also known as peshtamels or hammam towels. The patterns on these towel feature vibrant motifs conveying the heritage of the Antatolia culture.
Slate+Salt work closely with small batch weavers in the Denizli region of Turkey. Home to family owned weaving workshops that produce beautiful Turkish towels, which could even be used as blankets for a summer siesta.
The weavers in these small shops take pride in continuing the traditional techniques of loom weaving — putting their craftsmanship on display through practical modern design. And to keep things eco-friendly, they only use natural fibers like cotton and bamboo that have been certified by OEKO-TEX as 100% safe and non-harmful dyes are used for coloring. Even each tassel is hand-knotted by women in their homes!
Lao people are some of the most skilled artisan craftsmen in the world, but as modernity takes over, Laos is losing its grip on traditional techniques. With an increasing number of cheap factory-made imports available, Laotians are giving up their time-honored craftsmanship for more modern lifestyles. As a result, many unique and beautiful craft traditions are at risk of disappearing entirely.
Slate+Salt work closely with artisan groups in Laos to create items that blend modern design with natural lifestyles while still retaining the spirit of traditional craftsmanship. Guided by the principles of fair trade organizations, Slate+Salt work to create employment opportunities for impoverished villages, especially women. And to reduce extreme poverty with each of these products made and finished by local artisans in the villages.
The cotton used to make these pillows is planted by hand and watered by the monsoon rains. It takes eight months for the plant to produce the cotton flower, then it is picked by hand, ginned by hand (a difficult and tedious activity), and then spun into yarn by hand. Traditional wood and bamboo looms are used by weavers to transform the cotton fiber into cotton cloth.
The process of indigo dying is a skill that has been passed down for generations, and is an ancient art with many associated myths. For example, it is believed that menstruating women will upset the “indigo spirit” if they come into contact with the dye mixture, rendering it useless. Indigo dye is made from the leaves and shoots of the “kharm” plant, which grows in Laos and other areas. Getting the raw materials for indigo may be easy enough, but making it requires real talent as well as fermentation of the “kharm” under specific temperature conditions keeping the mixture in air-tight jars.