Spell & the Gypsy was born from Isabella’s love of hand crafting. We continue to honour the tradition of hand making by supporting marginalised artisans and crafts people around the world.
OUR SAYULITA KAFTAN
Our exquisite Sayulita Kaftans are hand embroidered by a group of talented artisan women from a village located in Rajasthan, nestled in the isolated desert region of Barmer in India.
The group take a community approach to craftsmanship, sharing the load between 70 families within the village - this approach allows the women to prioritise time with their families or time working in the fields.
Partnerships like this allow women and minorities to become self-sustainable, financially independent decision makers in their communities. This is especially important in the crafts industry, where 70% of producers are women.
The women told us how many brands begin working with their artisan group but have to move their production back to larger factories because of the fast pace of the fashion industry. As an independent brand, we’re able to offer flexibility and work within the artisan groups timelines.
We are proud to support the artisan techniques of such an isolated community so they may continue to pass on their traditions for generations to come.
We have partnered with Indian Fair Trade organisation SETU through their Bridge to Artisans program.
Most of the artisan communities across the world are rich with local, traditional art forms, but lack the knowledge or resources to access global trade. SETU works to bridge this gap and provide artisan groups with the necessary resources to share their traditional art and make a good living through Fair Trade practices.
WHAT IS FAIR TRADE?
Fair trade exists to give a chance to small farmers, artisans and workers around the world, so they too can participate in global trade. This philosophy provides a platform that enables disadvantaged people to rise above poverty and improve their standard of living.
THE STORY OF OUR
ARTISAN TOTE BAGS
Our limited edition, organic tote bags are a collaboration between five different Indian artisan groups – each of these communities use their own ancient traditions, weaving together their techniques to bring the bags to life.
We start with the experts who carve out wooden blocks intricately by hand, etching out the lines of the Spell logo in exact symmetry and width – and finishing with a perfectly horizontal surface for the dye.
The next group is the block printer – the beauty of their art is in blending the dyes and using multiple techniques to colour the fabrics. For our tote bags, the wooden blocks are dipped in the dye and stamped by hand onto the canvas.
The canvas is then sent to the stitching unit on the outskirts of Jaipur to be cut and sewn together. Meanwhile the fabric tags are made by three separate women’s groups - a local printer, the tailors who embroider around the hole, and the women who take out the fringes and tie string through the hole to attach to the bag.
It’s amazing that such a seemingly simple item can pass through the hands of so many, and it’s a reminder for us to slow down, treasure each item and be grateful to those who worked on the pieces we love so much.
OUR HAND CRAFTED
BRASS TOE CAPS
The brass toe and heel caps that adorn our Sugar Skull boots are individually handcrafted through traditional techniques by an artisan group from a small village in Northern India. Their trade and skills have been passed down from generation to generation. We love the unique detail and individuality they bring to each boot that can only be created with the use of manual machinery and hand finishing.