The {Anchal} Edit

Anchal Team Pic.001.jpeg

meet the Anchal team 

The women behind Anchal believe that design can change lives. Their nonprofit social enterprise is using design thinking to create innovative products and sustainable employment that empower women worldwide. Through their artisan program, Anchal provides alternative careers in textile design and production to exploited and marginalized women in India, working directly with female commercial sex workers who are seeking a way out of the trade.  Anchal products have been sold in Urban Outfitters nationwide, and have been featured in Design*Sponge, Harper’s Bazaar, Brides, Better Homes & Gardens, Huffington Post, GOOD Magazine, and right here, in our 11.13.17 Edit.  We're thrilled that they're taking over Communelle today, sharing five of their favorite products that do (and look!) good.

1. Swahili Modern, Medium White Senegalese Lidded Hamper, $115

2. Rudy Jude, Karate Jacket, $105

3. Anchal Project, 22" Embroidered Triangle Toss Pillow, $68

4. Causebox, Winter Subscription Box, $49.95

5. Mulxiply, Felt + Leather Backpack in Black, $196

 

1.

SWAHILI MODERN
Medium White Senegalese Lidded Hamper
$115

{Chosen by Colleen Clines, Co-founder & CEO of Anchal}

  Photo by Swahili Modern

Photo by Swahili Modern

the stuff:

Even before starting Anchal, I loved spicing up my outfits with unique vintage scarves that I would find at second-hand stores. So needless to say I own a bunch of scarves and I struggled to find a place to store them. This year I purchased a gorgeous basket from our fellow Fair Trade Federation member, Swahili African Modern. This basket is carefully handmade by Wolof women in rural Senegal from salvaged plastic strips and cattail stalks. I really love the simple design and the elegant lid to hide my piles of scarves!

 

the story

Swahili works ethically with artisan groups in 14 countries in Africa. As members of Fair Trade Federation, they are required to undergo a screening process and follow nine core principles and a strict Code of Practice that ensures fair payment, wage determination, working conditions, sustainable production and environmental practices. This added verification gives me the reassurance I need to feel confident that my purchase is directly impacting communities in need.

  Photo by @ swahilimodern  (Instagram)

Photo by @swahilimodern (Instagram)


2.

RUDY JUDE
Karate Jacket
$105

{Chosen by Brent Drew-Wolak: Dyescape Coordinator at Anchal}

  Photo by @ rudyjudeco  (Instagram)

Photo by @rudyjudeco (Instagram)

the stuff:

I have been eyeing this kid's piece from Rudy Jude hoping this design will be available in adult sizes soon! One of the reasons I love this company so much is that they are committed to supply- chain transparency. This jean jacket, for example, is sewn in Los Angeles and is made from USA-grown denim seconds. Meaning, Rudy Jude uses cast-off naturally dyed denim from USA-made mills, thus keeping massive amounts of imperfect material out of landfills. 

the story:

Rudy Jude is a small clothing brand founded by artist and designer Julie D. O'Rourke.  Julie created a company that focuses on clothes that are good for the planet, and good for consumers. All of their products are naturally dyed and sewn in the USA. Although the brand started out as a children’s clothing company, Julie also releases limited lines for adults. I admire a company that focuses on well-made basics, and that is exactly what Rudy Jude does. Both the adult and children’s collections consist of basics that have been reinvented by adding beautiful natural colors. Julie just released Season Three, her third collection of children's clothes and will hopefully release adult sizes for these designs soon. She is currently out of stock of all adult clothes, but her Instagram is worth a follow @rudyjude--you'll want to know when she launches the next adult line!

  Photo by Rudy June

Photo by Rudy June


3.

ANCHAL PROJECT
22" Embroidered Triangle Toss Pillow
$68

{Chosen by Natalie Hugon: Marketing & PR Director of Anchal}

  Photo by @anchalproject

Photo by @anchalproject

the stuff:

We think you can never have too many pillows and you will never run out of places to put them - toss them on the couch, your favorite chair , the floor, pile them deep on the bed... you get the point. We might be biased, but the details in the hand stitching and the highest quality certified organic cotton used to make Anchal's pillow covers make them by far our favorite to buy. Did we mention the chic gold zipper closure? Every pillow is hand made by a woman artisan in our holistic program. Every stitch is thoughtful and tells a story of her personal journey to empowerment. Never has a pillow in your home been so meaningful!

the story:

Anchal believes design can change lives. As a non-profit social enterprise, Anchal uses design thinking to create innovative products and sustainable employment that empower exploited women worldwide. As a Fair Trade certified organization, we keep these principle's at the center of our mission – to create sustainable employment opportunities for exploited women through eco-friendly products and a market that supports empowerment. Anchal improves the lives of our artisans through a safe working environment, fair wages, capacity building and cultural respect.

 

  Photo by @anchalproject

Photo by @anchalproject


4.

CAUSEBOX
Winter Subscription Box
$50

{Chosen by Maggie Clines, Creative Director of Anchal}

  Photo by  @causebox  (Instagram)

Photo by @causebox (Instagram)

 

the stuff

This holiday season the Anchal team was invited to design Causebox's Winter Box! Together we designed a box wrapped in an Anchal quilt. When you look closely at the box you can see each stitch an Anchal artisan has made to create a stunning work of art. We love seeing the talents and hard work of Anchal artisans printed on all the beautiful boxes being shipped around the world. Every box is filled to the brim with fashion, beauty, home and lifestyle products, all made by socially conscious companies. It's like your birthday or Christmas every time you receive and open your box of goodies!

 

 

the story:

Causebox is a socially conscious subscription box dedicated to supporting a variety of brands that do good.  Inside each quarterly box you'll find an assortment of home goods & accessories made by artisans & socially conscious brands around the world. The best part about Causebox is the fact that they share the full story behind each brand.  Causebox is a fantastic way to support so many amazing brands with one purchase!

  Photo by  Causebox  (via Tumblr)

Photo by Causebox (via Tumblr)


5.

MULXIPLY
Felt + Leather Backpack in Black, $196

{Group pick!  Chosen by the whole Anchal Team} 

  Photo by

Photo by

the stuff:

We fell in love with Tanja from Mulxiply when we met her in the Handmade Global section of NY NOW. She radiates positive energy and is always so joyful. We found an immediate connection with her and developed a strong camaraderie as she is another female running a socially conscious business. Tanya's products are just as beautiful as she is and we particularly love her felt and leather backpack. When you think of wearing a backpack, its easy to associate the look with school and carrying books. Not with this backpack. It's sleek and minimal design gives it a grown up feel with a bit of edge. You can toss in your laptop and head to a coffee shop for an afternoon of working, or pair with a cute dress for a night out with friends. The versatility and functionality make this bag one you will wear with everything.

 

the story:

Mulxiply makes it their mission to work with organizations who provide sustainable, fair trade, creative work to women in developing nations. By doing so, they are providing critical employment in societies where those who don't have access to education are at risk of being trafficked. Even more, they pride themselves in working side by side with artisan teams to pair their designs with traditional techniques and materials from the region, keeping the heritage and culture alive. Because their products are made with fair trade labor, when you buy them or gift them, everyone wins. It’s the multiply effect!

  Photo by Mulxiply

Photo by Mulxiply