*All these images were taken by Cecilia Portela, unless otherwise stated.

 

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| FINE CASHMERE PANTIES |

We’ve recently added a new member to our ongoing collection.

I feel especially proud of these 100% cashmere panties because it is something I’ve been trying to develop for a while.

My mum and my auntie Luisa have been involved in the process, hand knitting the samples.

I’m truly grateful for that.

The Fine Cashmere Panties will be ready to purchase at the beginning of November.

 

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| CLO SUSTAINABLE EDITORIAL |

 

Photography Annelie Bruijn @ Visionary Agency | Models Simone D and Nina Oud @ Paparazzi Models | Hair and Make Up Judith Neyens @ NCL Representation | Photo Assistant Vincent Houtman | Creative Direction Clo Studio.

Featuring our Cotton Hemp Pleated Dress, Fine Raw Silk Oversized Shirt and the Raw Silk Paperbag Skirt.

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| SOPHIE BOGDAN by LIEKE ROMEIJN |

Featuring our C11 Linen Oversized Duster, Navy Canvas Jumpsuit, Raw Silk Collarless Shirt, Striped Silk Trousers, Cotton Hemp Pleated Dress and the C11 Linen Trousers.

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| TIME OFF  |

We’ve just arrived back from a wonderful 4 – week break in Slovenia, Croatia and Friuli Venezia in Italy.

        

We rented a campervan that allowed us to travel without a plan.

We knew we had a place to shelter, sleep and eat no matter what.

  Our intention when we left was to spend as much time in nature as we could.

In Croatia we went island hopping and visited Cres, Rab, Pag and Brač .

       

Every day we woke up to a different view.

 

This is at 05:34 in Pag Island (Croatia), watching the sun rising and the moon setting.

I feel truly grateful for having shared this wonderful experience with the best travel companion.

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WE SUPPORT PROACTIVA OPEN ARMS

SEA RESCUE IS NOT A CRIME

#freeopenarms

Photo credit: Xavier Berral

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| WILD SILK |

See the stem (peduncle) coming out of the cocoon? That’s where the silk used in our Light Bulkar Jacket is extracted from.

Tussah caterpillars create this peduncle by wrapping silk around a leave stem, before working on the cocoon itself. The colour of the silk found in the stem is dark brown, wheareas the one wrapped around the cocoon is more creamy.

This woolly textured silk is handspun and used preferably in the weft.

Our Light Bulkar Jacket is one of a kind and it is now available online.

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| Motto |

Happy and fulfilling New Year 2018 !

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| Organic by The Lissome |

“Shall I not have intelligence with the earth? Am I not partly leaves and vegetable mould myself?” – H.D.T.

 

Photography by Anna Rosa Krau  |  Styling  by Sophia Schwan  | Hair & Make Up by Eva Dieckhoff  | Models : Yulduz at TFM
Zuzanka at M4 Models.

Featuring the Raw Silk Collarless Shirt, the Raw Silk Extra Long Shirt, the Herringbone Linen Long Dress and the Herringbone Linen Oversized Duster.

Available online and at the Lissome Store.

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Visiting  Adriana Meunie and Jaume Roig ‘s dreamy studio in the countryside of Mallorca has been the inspiring note during our latest break in the island.

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During our first trip to Nepal.

Kyanjin Gompa, Langtang, 2014.

At 3.870 masl. surrounded by + 7.000 m. peaks.

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 | Mono | Moments by The Lissome  |

Featuring our Raw Silk Oversized Shirt (sold out) and the Raw Silk Midi Skirt.

Photography by Filine Fink  |  Styling  by Sophia Schwan  | Hair & Make Up by Natalia Vermeer  | Models : Anna von Rueden and Dari Maximova.

 

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I’m so happy to share our interview for Exposed Zippers.

Thank you Inma Varandela for the wonderful photos.

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Presenting our new “Unbleached” pieces.

They are all made with 100% vegetable fibers, such as cotton and hemp.

Woven, cut and sewn in Kathmandu, Nepal.

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Proudly introducing our new local stockist.

MALVASÍA | Rúa Xelmírez 22 | Santiago de Compostela, Spain.

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So happy to announce that we will be participating in ‘ The Lissome Pop Up : A Curated Selection of Mindful Fashion’ at the East Village E20.

“Under the curation of LISSOME, the pop up will bring together carefully selected brands with an authentic and transparent story behind them”.

June 25th | Red Yellow Blue E20 1EY

Morning Talk: 10.30 am to 11.30 am.
Pop-Up Shop: 11.30 am to 5 pm.
Get your ticket for the talk via Billetto: http://bit.ly/2rZRymW

We hope you can join!

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| By MÓNICA BEDMAR |

Uma wearing our Madder Square Dress and the Rustic Silk Midi Skirt.

With our Green Silk Pleated Dress.

Featuring the D23 Oversized Duster and the Rustic Silk Midi Skirt.

Photography : Mónica Bedmar | Styling : Caterina Pérez  | Art Direction: Devenir

Featuring : Uma Bunnag.

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| By LIEKE ROMEIJN |

Art direction, photography and styling by Lieke Romeijn.

Featuring the Hemp | Cotton Collarless Shirt.

Juicy wearing our Deep Blue Oversized Duster.

With our Deep Blue Silk Jumpsuit.

Featuring: Juicy Ijsselmuiden.

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| ICELAND |

We just came back from a dream holiday.

It’s been years since I wanted to visit Iceland, I feel grateful for having finally experienced this wonderful country.

The landscapes we encountered went beyond our expectations.

We rented a van and traveled along the entire Ring Road.

Having the sleeping and eating sorted gave us the time and the freedom to stop and do as we pleased.

We learnt that being updated with the weather and road conditions is a must.

We found some challenges along the way : gale wind, hail storms, snow, ice …

The force of the elements can be striking.

Magical encounter as we entered the east side of the country.

The land of fire and ice is dotted with glaciers and volcanoes.

Around 11% of the surface is covered in ice caps and glaciers.

Some of them are already disappearing due to climate change.

Lava fields covered in spongy moss.

Billboard advertising is nonexistant.

Iceland is a country like no other. It is an endless natural playground.

Soundtrack recommended: Hans Zimmer’s Planet Earth II Suite.

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| FAULTY GARMENTS : A SECOND CHANCE |

All our garments go through a slow and long production process. We work with a few teams of weavers, two families of dyers and two master tailors. Every piece is touched by many hands until it is completed.

Unfortunately, and for diverse reasons, finished garments do not always meet our expectations. It is something quite painful to see because we know that perfectly finished garments and faulty garments go through the same amount of work and use of resources.

Therefore, we like giving these garments a second opportunity.

Not doing so would be throwing away many hours of work, precious handwoven fabrics, liters of water, money, and uncountable energy.

When we speak about faulty garments we are speaking of stains due to the hand dying process, small pen marks or imperfect finishes.

In all cases garments are totally wearable and in many cases those mistakes are not seen at first sight.

If you would like to know about the faulty garments that we have in stock, please let us know.

They are sold with a 20% – 50% discount depending on each case.

Thank you !

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| SUMMER INSPIRATION |

During the summer of 2013 I spent a few weeks house sitting a wonderful self built eco-house located in the south of Spain.

Electricity was run by solar panels and water was pumped out of a well.

Days were bright and hot and nights starry and dark.

It felt like paradise.

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| SUNDAY READS |

Matka silk filaments were originally unwound and plied together on a mud pot or Matka pot. It is believed that this kind of silk was named after the clay pot used in its process. Filaments are nowadays likely to be reeled on a woman’s thigh.

  In Hole & Corner’s issue 12 Christopher Sturman captured Matka potter Dukhan in Singhasni, a village 20 km. south of Jodhpur. Dukhan and his son still make Matka pots the traditional way.

They are used to store and and cool water in houses of Pakistan, India, Bangladesh and Sri Lanka since ancient times.

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| NEW PIECES |

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Raw silk, linen, hemp, cotton, and nettle. All together in one photo.

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| INTERNATIONAL WOMEN’S DAY |

I met Minu in Pokhara during my first trip to Nepal in 2014.

She is one of the kindest people I’ve ever met, we became friends almost instantly.

Every time I go back to Nepal I visit her and she invites me to a delicious meal at her house, which is always one of the most valuable memories I bring back home with me.

She is the bread winner of her family and has a full time job as an Education Co-ordinator in a rural school in Pumdi Bhundi, a village 12 km. away from Pokhara.

In her school they take care and give an education to underprivileged and Dalit (oppresssed / untouchable) children.

Her job has not only allowed her to interact with these children but also with their mothers, who live in a very vulnerable situation.

“Our society is male dominated and still women identity is recognized by their father, brother and husband instead of their self identity.”

These women are totally dependent on men and are often physically, sexually, and mentally abused. They have no access to basic education and they have no means to earn for their own livelihood.

“The main occupation of villagers is farming vegetables and seasonal crops. Milk production and animal farming are the main source of income generation. There is no alternative means of generating income in this region .”

Minu could not stand seeing these mothers being mistreated, not having the autonomy to make their own living and most of all, being unaware of their own unfair situation.

She thought of creating a group where they would receive guidance, counseling and develop new skills to enable them to be financially independent.

Last year, when Minu was telling me about the budget she needed to create her “dream project” with the mothers on Pumdi Bhundi.

She managed to create a group of seven mothers, who now have a platform to speak out and share their problems. They are aware of women’s rights and motivated to fight for a better future for them and their children.

They are receiving sewing skills and are being trained on how to use their natural resources in a sustainable way.

This will not only allow them to be resilient and create their own income, but it is giving them dignity and identity.

The day I was introduced to some of the mothers.

In order to do this, Minu first needed to rent a space in the village, then find a person who would train the mothers and buy all the material necessary: tables, chairs, sewing machines, scissors, needles, thread and so on.

The mothers live in remote places and they need transportation.

They can only have 3 days a week of training because they lose their daily wage in the field.

How does Minu find the time and how does she finance the project?

She uses the scarce free time she has after school hours, spends part of her small salary, and receives small donations from close friends.

In MATKA we strongly believe that small changes can make big differences.

Minu is for us an example of kindness, strength, and commitment.

We feel very lucky to be able to help and raise awareness of her beautiful and inspiring project.

If you want to collaborate with Minu in order for her to keep working with the mothers of Pumdi Bhundi, please send us an email.

We hope one day to be able to sell garments made by them.

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| DURING OUR LAST TRIP TO NEPAL |

We visited a new team of weavers located near the center of Kathmandu.

We followed the long and laborious process of preparing the warp for weaving cashmere shawls.

Kamala is winding the pirns (or “tukkis”) that will go in the shuttle.

Bobbins of cashmere yarn were previously wound by machine.

Raw silk is manipulated exclusively by hand, no machines are involved in the process.

We also visited the button makers.

They use water buffalo bone and horn collected from the riverbanks.

Whenever I tell the lady, owner of the factory, “I’m vegetarian,  I’m not sure if I feel so comfortable being surrounded by all these bones”, she tells me “don’t worry, this is recycling, it is good karma”.

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| By LIEKE ROMEIJN |

  

Meis and Liliana were captured by talented Lieke Romeijn wearing some of the pieces currently available on the site.

Featuring the Indigo Square Dress, Copper Extra Long Shirt, and Green Square Dress.

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| 2017 |

Starting 2017 the right way.

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bye-bye-2016

Saying goodbye to 2016.

Thank you all for your support!

Wearing the Rust Linen Duster Coat and Rust Linen Trousers.

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aamaghar

We have just received our Christmas greetings from Aamaghar Pathshala in Pumdi-Bhundi, Pokhara, Nepal.

Please click on the photo to get an insight of this beautiful and necessary project.

Peace and Love for everyone.

ALWAYS.

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GREY EXTRA LONG SHIRT

We are introducing a few new pieces to the collection.

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| REMINDER |

NO PRICE REDUCTION

Black Friday is a good day to remember that …

Ours is a long and slow production process.

All our fabrics are hand woven and hand dyed by artisans in the Kathmandu Valley, Nepal.
We use exclusively 100% natural fibers.
Each piece is cut and sewn individually by our tailor Vishnu Maharjan in Kathmandu.
The whole process is done locally, following fair trade principles.
We respect and value craftsmanship and promote conscious consumption.

ALWAYS.

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MATKA_MARIA MEIJIDE

Our collection will be exhibited at María Meijide‘s house/atelier until December 3rd.

Opening times: Every day from 5 to 9 pm. | Praza do Toural, 9 – 3rd floor, Santiago de Compostela.

 

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do-design_madrid

do-design_madrid-1

We are so (so) pleased to announce that Do Design in Madrid will be stocking a selection of Matka’s pieces.

Images by Do Design.

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MOTHER + DAUGHTER

Daughter wearing Rust linen trousers and duster | Mother wearing Ochre duster and E-68 Trousers (1st collection).

MOTHER + DAUGHTER 1

Autumn landscape in Galicia.

MOTHER + DAUGHTER 2

Daughter wearing Hay linen duster and D – 28 Midi skirt | Mother wearing Ochre linen jacket and D-2o Trousers (1st collection).

matka_md_3

Mother wearing Hay linen jacket and D – 28 Trousers | Daughter wearing Indigo linen duster coat and B-29 silk midi skirt.

| Mother and Daughter by Romina Portela |

I found out that the word ‘matka’ meant ‘mother’ in Polish, Czech, and Slovak, after its launch.

This is something that has somehow strengthen my relationship with the brand.

Since the beginning, Matka has been a very personal project but I never thought it would get to this point.

For that reason, and because my mother is one of Matka’s ambassadors, I wanted to create this story.

My dear cousin Romina took the photos and my father and auntie Laura came along to help us with the props and to give us support.

I hope to be able to photograph more mothers and daughters in the future wearing MATKA.

(Do not hesitate to write us if you think you could be one of them).

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beige-cashmere-throw_

My Beige Cashmere Throw comes with me everywhere I go.

Location scouting with Romina Portela.

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NEW COLLECTION OCT16

We are slowly introducing new pieces to our collection.

 

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in-ku

I knew about Carin Mansfield and her twenty- year old brand Universal Utility about a year ago, when I saw this video on BBC News.

I immediately felt identified and inspired by what she says and wrote myself a mental note to go and visit her the next time I was in London.

I finally did, a couple of weeks ago, and it was definitely one of the highlights of my trip.

She makes simple shaped, durable, comfortable clothing inspired by old workwear. Every piece is sewn individually and locally by highly skilled British machinists.

Finishes are key. She makes sure pieces are impeccably crafted and she refuses to work otherwise.

It is called “slow fashion” for a reason.

Christine Chang Hanway, founder of Fabulous Fabsters and Universal Utility’s customer, asks Carin on her site about how everything started:

“Selling my clothes at Egg was really the beginning for me. This is where Rei Kawakubo from Comme des Garçons found me. She later invited me to show the Universal Utility label at Dover Street Market, which I did from 2004 – 2009. Another Japanese company called The Baycrews Group also found me at Egg and I supplied my designs to them for seven years. I had three machinists and was supplying 10 shops and was working around the clock. Eventually, it all got to be too much and in 2013,  I decided to open my own shop In-ku in order to consolidate and focus”.

In fact, as Carin explains to Rebecca May Johnson for AnOther Magazine, it was in 2013 when Rei Kawakubo and her husband Adrian Joffe offered to produce for her in Japan under license as a collaborative label, but it just wouldn’t work.

“Faced with people with that history I said ‘OK, can we see some samples.’ But the problem was, my technique cannot be made in an industrial style because it’s the old way: French seams, bindings, pipings – it’s deceptively difficult. They tried and made thirteen garments in an industrial way, and I couldn’t accept the make: it was a total difference of standard and I couldn’t do it (…).”

She is now fully focused on her small four – storey haven of peace, where I was lucky enough to find her and speak with her about the ways of producing and consuming.

In – ku | 15a Warren St. | W1T 5LN | London.

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machhapuchhare_

Macchapuchhare or ‘Fish Tail’ (6993 masl) is a mountain in the Annapurna Himalayas that has never been summited.

It is considered sacred, associated with Hindu god Shiva, and forbidden from climbing since late 1950’s.

This photo was taken in Ghandruk, in January 2014, during our trek in the Annapurna Region.

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crianlarich_1

crianlarich_2

We have just got back from the Scottish Highlands.

These pictures were taken during our last morning walk, right outside our lodge in Crianlarich.

skye-weavers_

While exploring Isle of Skye we came across this interesting weaving studio,  where they use a bicycle pedal-powered loom.

Here is Roger, one of its founders, showing us the loom mechanism.

skye-weavers_1

The entire process of warping, weaving, and dyeing is explained in this video.

Skye Weavers is located in Glendale, on the extreme North-Western corner of the island.

skye_1

Sheep seemed to be living the life up there.

Quiraing, Isle of Skye.

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matka_home_bw-off

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MIST

Misty evenings.

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CORRUBEDO

Summer getaway.

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INDIGO LONG SHIRT

Slowly introducing new pieces to our collection.

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BAMBOO BENEFITS

| The benefits of using bamboo fiber |

We are increasing significantly the use of bamboo in our garments.

Bamboo fabric is light, extremely soft, and versatile.

It can be used as cotton or silk, but for many reasons bamboo is a much more sustainable choice.

It’s one of the fastest growing plants in the world. It can grow up to 4ft. in one day.

It requires zero pesticides or chemical fertilizers, unlike cotton; which accounts 24% of the world’s insecticide market and 11% of the sale of global pesticides, according to WWF.

Bamboo needs 1/3 the amount of water compared to  cotton.

According to the Environmental Bamboo Foundation, bamboo minimises CO2 and generates up to 35% more oxygen than equivalent spieces of trees.

Bamboo fiber has great insulating properties, just like silk. It helps staying warmer in winter and cooler in summer.

In MATKA we are using it for summer dresses and as lining in jackets, skirts and trousers.

In any case, we believe that natural resources should be used responsibly and that mass production of any kind is unsustainable.

“Buy less, choose well, make it last.” – Vivienne Westwood.

Painting: Cristina Durán Arufe.

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NO PRICE REDUCTION

Ours is a long and slow production process.

All our fabrics are hand woven and hand dyed by artisans in the Kathmandu Valley, Nepal.
We use exclusively 100% natural fibers.
Each piece is cut and sewn individually by our tailor Vishnu Maharjan in Kathmandu.
The whole process is done locally, following fair trade principles.
We respect and value craftsmanship and promote conscious consumption.

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HOME_LANZADA

Home.

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It has been a few very busy weeks moving around visiting friends, clients … But mostly people that have become both.

SALAMANCA

In Salamanca, visiting a friend’s dream house in the countryside.

MALLORCA_2

Viveca was the first place I wanted to visit when I landed in Palma de Mallorca. After following them on Instagram for so long, it was magical to see in person the characteristic blue wooden door with their name on it. This charming concept store is located in a beautiful and secluded alley, right in the heart of Palma’s old town. They have a curated selection of antiques and handcrafted textiles and ceramics. Absolutely lovely.

  MALLORCA_3-

Sitting on La Pecera‘s Saturn stools was next on my list and I was not disappointed, they are truly amazing. In this tiny store you can find mid-20th century furniture, rugs, lamps, ceramics, not-just-any hats, espadrilles … All carefully selected (and in some cases designed) by her founder Marlene Albadalejo. I could have stayed here for hours contemplating beauty.

 MALLORCA_7

  Memorable day off in Deià.

MALLORCA_8

I feel very fortunate to be spending my life in continuos contact with beautiful handwoven natural fabrics, designing comfortable and durable clothing, and getting to know the talented artisans behind the entire process.

On top of all this, MATKA is also providing me the opportunity to travel and meet people alike, who appreciate quality over quantity and who not only see but feel the beauty of things.

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Everything at Latayaya is so beautifully displayed. It is a pleasure to spend time looking around … Amongst endless beauties, now you’ll be able to find a selection of Matka’s pieces behind their doors or inside their wardrobes. Definitely a new and inspiring way of shopping (that we love).

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YO DONA - 0416

This weekend we woke up to these great news! Yo Dona was featuring us on their weekly issue.

We feel truly grateful for all the support!

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WICKER BACKPACK-

 Working on the first trial of our wicker backpack | Leather straps and cotton lining | Handmande in Portugal.

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BARN RED

| The story of how the Barn Red Jacket was made |

100% Handwoven cotton fabric in white is taken to our dyer Gautam Mandal. He lives with his family in a village about 20 minutes away from the city, in the Kathmandu Valley.

They are originally from India and belong to a second generation of dyers.

The house is located in a peaceful, rural area and it’s surrounded by hills.

The fabric needs to be soaked in water and only when it’s completely wet, the process of dyeing begins.

Water is heated with firewood because of the gas and fuel shortage (read about the Indian blockade below).

I show Gautam the color I’ve chosen in the swatches. He seems to know straight away how to get it.

He doesn’t need formulas nor notes.

The alchemy begins.

Gautam’s brother Ravi helps him during the entire process.

After 3 trials, he arrives to the exact same color I’ve chosen : Barn Red.

I’m truly amazed.

The fabric is hanged outside to dry. It’s a beautiful winter sunny day.

After 2 days, the fabric is delivered to our tailor Vishnu, in Kathmandu.

He cuts it and Prem Dai sews it.

BARN RED JACKET

This is just an example of how all our garments are made.

They take time, dedication and there is a lot of talent involved.

“Production is slow but rewarding”.

PS: The Barn Red Jacket was sold before we were able to upload it.

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ELISEO BY MATKA

__Eliseo by MATKA__

| Here is the story behind our Three – Way Leather Bag |

The original piece was acquired by my mum in Ibiza (Spain), in the summer of 1978.

The bag was signed by – presumably – his maker: Eliseo.

My mum used it for several years.

When my older sister  – who was also born in the summer of 1978 – turned 14, she took over and adopted the bag for over 12 years and used it until it was completely unwearable.

ELISEO BY MATKA

Around that time, I was already dreaming about having a bag like Eliseo’s. I just couldn’t find anything like it in the market.

Nothing was quite as perfect: a backpack, a shoulder bag, and a handbag.  All in one. Comfortable, strong, long lasting, simple, and yet stylish.

It was around 2005 when we decided to give the pattern to an artisan in our hometown and make one replica for each of us.

We’ve been using it since.

It’s been a while since I’ve been thinking about remaking Eliseo’s bag and adding a few features to it.

I use mine pretty much every day, so I’m aware of the small details that could improve the experience of using it; with all my respects to the original design.

While working in MATKA, I’ve had access to leather and leather craftsmen, so I decided to make a few trials.

We’ve added a cotton lining, 3 pockets (one with zip) and strengthen the holes that hold the bag by slightly changing the original structure.

It has been made in Nepal, with buffalo leather.

See the our Three – Way Leather Bag here.

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FEBRUARY 2016

| Preview of our new collection |

100% Handwoven natutal fibers | Raw silk, cashmere, wool, linen, cotton, bamboo and hemp.

Ethically and individually made by Vishnu Maharjan in Kathmandu, Nepal.

Hand dyed by Gautam Mandal in Kathmandu Valley, Nepal.

One of a kind | Very limited editions.

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A FRESH START

Vishnu Maharjan is the tailor who is currently making all our garments in Kathmandu, Nepal.

He doesn’t like waste, so he makes the sewing patterns with newspaper.

We love it.

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EARTHQUARKE

| 9 months since the devastating earthquake in Nepal |

The government has just officially launched the – delayed – reconstruction campaign. It is  not clear though when work will begin in the northern mountain villages, where people are still living in tents in freezing weather.

History seems to be repeating itself once again: international aid (4.1 billion USD) is not yet being distributed.

Here is an interesting  BBC podcast by Simon Cox from the early days after the earthquake, about where the money is going.

Local and international NGOs were created ad hoc. From what I can read, hear and see on the ground, these independent initiatives are making a huge difference in the country’s reconstruction, together obviously with the Nepalese innate strength and resilience.

Living Nepal, Des de Nepal, Langtang Disaster Relief, Hugging Nepal, and Cloudbase Foundation partners with Karma Flights are just an example of these organizations.

Thank you all for your enormous efforts!