Fair Trade 

說起馬達加斯加,大家會想到丁滿與彭彭 lol ~ 

鮮少人知的馬達加斯加民族時尚!

 

馬達加斯加的傳統婦女們善於運用當地天然材質和染料,以她們承傳了好幾世紀的編織技術,做出充滿地方民族特色的手工編織包,來賣給遊客貼補家用。可惜正如當我們去旅行時,總喜歡買一些當地的紀念品回家,而這些豐有地方民族特色的紀念品往往會因為與大都市的風格不相襯,最後都會被深埋在櫃子裡。

由於無法與世界時尚接軌;無法大量銷售,所以馬達加斯加的婦女們並不能利用她們有價值的工藝技術,來改善自身的生活。

直至2003年,熱衷社會公益的藝術工作者LaurelBrandstetter 來到了馬達加斯加,感受到當地人生困苦,同時發現這充滿民族風味的包款,看到別人看不見的特色,決心將它發揚光大,於是成立了Mar Y Sol,並建立共同開發與貿易的機制,用教育的方式和銷售能力的裁培來代替援助。Laurel將這些工匠視作合作伙伴,而非簡單的勞動力。

每一個包包都是以「公平交易」的方式合作、保障島民的收益,協助馬達加斯加的家庭有經濟獨立的能力。

 

Mar Y Sol希望透過加強產品的國際時尚美感,帶動銷售。從技術指導到與織品專家合作,Mar Y Sol 協助婦女們發展具有時尚氣息的包包款式;同時,定期與她們分享國際的時尚資訊,在保留原始和傳統的特色同時,加強產品的時尚美感,將這些手工產品推廣到國際市場。

 

Mar Y Sol

融合馬達加斯加手編文化,使用馬達加斯加的天然素材、植物染劑等有機材料;

是一個公平貿易和環境保護政策的跨文化設計品牌。

Mar Y Sol works with artisans in Madagascar and Kenya to create vivid, original handbags from renewable materials, enabling families to gain economic independence and education, and promoting environmental conservation.

 

Founder Laurel Brandstetter saw a chance to reduce poverty through the socially and environmentally responsible sale of handmade products and collaborates with artisans to create pieces with an innovative blend of traditional and contemporary design.

 

It all started in 2003, when Laurel Brandstetter traveled to Madagascar as part of a community outreach initiative. There, she met native craftspeople interested in selling their wares internationally, and the idea for Mar Y Sol, a line of eco-friendly, fair-trade beach bags, was born. Using raffia palms and organic tanned leather, local artisans hand-dye and hand-weave each colorful Mar Y Sol beach tote, fringe-trimmed clutch, and shell-shaped cross-body bag.

A family of leather workers’ crafts all of their handles and tassels by organically tanning the hides by hand. They work with a family who hand dyes all of the raffia used in their crocheted products. Then women in rural villages and surrounding Madagascar’s capital city weave and crochet the totes and clutches. The company has worked on a variety of projects in Madagascar and Kenya, such as developing clean water wells, providing education funds for school supplies, and donating eyeglasses as well as art supplies whenever given the opportunity. 

Olivia Palermo也是愛用者之一

她的平日穿搭裡都有這款包的蹤影,看到她的示範如何將藤編包襯得優雅~

而Sarah Hyland則以活力運動休閒風配襯~

沒想到藤編包也可以襯上運動風!

CARACAS TOTE

Mar Y Sol | CARACAS TOTE

HK$1,288Price

CAPRI TOTE

Mar Y Sol | CAPRI TOTE

HK$1,288Price

感謝台灣網紅 Iris 對 Ibiza Tote藤袋的熱愛,

更完美演繹出各種配搭🤩,展示出這款包的高度的百搭可襯性🌟:

無論是出遊度假、或去沙灘玩樂;

甚至走在城市或小鎮之中;配搭歐美法式風格⋯⋯

這個包的顏色和款式也能通通駕馭👍🏿

而且容量超級大,有裝飾性之外更有很高的實用性😆

IBIZA TOTE

Mar Y Sol ✦ IBIZA TOTE

HK$1,288Price
Let's know more about Mar Y Sol by reading this  interview from" mood of living":

MoL: Where did you grow up?
LB: Cleveland, Ohio

 

MoL: Where do you live now?
LB: Brooklyn, NY

 

MoL: What were you doing before your current occupation?
LB: A city planner

 

MoL: What inspired you to make your raffia hats and handbags in Madagascar?
LB: I wanted to do a sustainable economic development project and I had a relative doing community development work in Madagascar. 
Itraveled there and was mind blown by the talent of the artisans and the beautiful basketwork.

 

MoL: What is so special about the artisans of Madagascar?
LB: Broadly, they have an interesting eye for color and pattern, their technical skills are incredible and they design beautiful things.  They use a diverse range of materials and techniques from woven raffia to carved wood
tohand spun wild silk

 

MoL: How is your company giving back to the local community and artisans? 
LB: What grew from a small family of artisans with one sewing machine has grown into collaboration among hundreds of artisans in rural and urban areas.  Mar Y Sol pays fair prices for our goods and treat our artisans as partners, from the design level to the finished product.  We do our best to source our raw materials responsibly and use only what’s locally available in Madagascar.

We don’t view the artisans as strictly a labor force. None of what Mar Y Sol has accomplished would be possible without teamwork.  We’ve worked with dozens of community groups and organizations in the capital city to provide foreign market, product development, export readiness training to lots of groups outside of our team.  We’ve worked on clean water projects, education and environmental initiatives.  We’re always trying to figure out the way to be most impactful.

 

MoL: Where do you look for inspiration?
LB: I look for inspiration from our artisan partners,
fromtraveling in Madagascar, from what other innovative companies are up to and from life in general.

 

MoL: When was the moment you realized you could really do this?
LB: Maybe in 2004 when a high profile magazine called me to source a Kenyan tote and I put a ridiculous amount of money on my credit card to have one express shipped to NY from a not for profit group we were working with there at the time.  They printed it and we had a ton of sales on our website for the first time.  I realized I had a natural entrepreneurial spirit in that moment.

 

MoL: What is your favorite quote?
LB: “Do or do not.  There is no try.” –Yoda

 

MoL: Do you have an influential figure in your life that inspired you?
LB: I have a handful of badass women who have served as mentors throughout my life, including my own mother. They make me feel empowered and energetic.

 

MoL: What is the best advice you’ve ever received and from whom?
LB: I guess it’s a tie.  My mom’s best friend discouraged me from wanting to be a social worker because I get too emotionally invested in things.  I was really young at the time.  It was very insightful.  And an artisan in Madagascar during one of our early meetings expressed that I should go back to NYC and focus on sales and stop trying to save Madagascar.  She felt that if I did what I could do best and she did what she could do best, given what we each had access to, we would both succeed.  She was right.

 

MoL: If you could have a conversation with any living person, who would it be and why?
LB: Jay Z.  He’s had an incredible diversity of life experience and seems extremely balanced.  Plus, his poetry is incredible.

 

MoL: What is something you know now that you wish you knew before?  
LB: I’m finally getting old enough to have better self-esteem. That’s pretty nice.

 

MoL: Do you have any words of wisdom?
LB: Keep it moving.

 

MoL: Where do you go to for a peace of mind?
LB: Home.

 

MoL: How do you achieve a peace of mind?
LB: I rarely do. I’ve got a lot to work on in that department. I feel pretty peaceful when I’m gardening. Otherwise, my mind is racing.

 

MoL: What advice can you give to anyone interested in starting his or her own business?
LB: Be sure you have an entrepreneurial spirit and not just a good idea.  Be willing to take big risks but make sure they’re smart ones.

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