Know Our Artisans

Here are some stories of the magical hands that give life to our beautiful products. Hands rich with art and lives rich with modesty and simplicity. Each thread adds beauty to the product and color to their lives. Let’s watch them weave, stitch and make the fabric of life. Click on any of the following headers to read the story:

Sahaj

This unique story shows the benefits of Fair Trade. This group makes our Mix N Match series, as well as other products that requires fine beading. They have been empowered without having Western values imposed on them, and women have been able to become respected, independent, decision makers in their community read more…

 

Vishwakarma

Read our story about the group that makes our color splash bags. Fair Trade is making smiles bloom in the desert, as artisans are able to lead a dignified lifestyle read more…

 

 

Tilonia

Our quilts and table covers are created by artisans in the Barmer region of Rajasthan, India. They use the wood block printing technique, similar to the one used in the Eco Shoppers and Laptop Bags, but differing in their modern-design approach read more…

 

Sure

This is a story about an all-women’s cooperative that makes our appliqued products. Click hear to learn about the art of needlework! read more…

 

 

Unique

The Unique artisan group is a collection of great sewers and tailors who specialize in stitching bags together. Some of their bags are completely done by them, while others are made in collaboration with some of our other partner artisans. If a group specializes in weaving a special kind of fabric, block printing, or making good silk, then the Unique group can use their materials to create many of our products read more…

 

Ana Art Group

After receiving an email from a struggling artisan group, SETU- the Bridge to Artisans provides employment to these talented jewelry-makers read more…

 

 

Masuta Artisans

These artisans create silk scarves and cushion covers by harvesting the tasar silkworm. It is a skill that has been practiced by generations, and now, through fair trade, they are able to reach a market that wants these products read more…

 

Niyishi Tribe

Our sustainable jewelry is made by an all-women cooperative in the Himalayan region of India. They have all escaped child marriage, and help each other become self-sustainable decision-makers in their communities read more…

 

 

Rann Kala: The Art of the Desert

“Rann Kala” means “The Art of the Desert”. There are numerous women artisans in Gujrat, India, who still dress in their traditional clothes and practice all of their customs. They have recently opened up to world markets, and are exporting their mirror-work and embroidered products to share with the world read more…

 

Kashida Weavers

These artisans weave different home decor items through an art called “kashida”. Through fair trade, they have been able to keep their traditional jobs alive. There has also been less migration to cities, since they can practice the kashida art right in their village read more…

 

Very Special Arts

This is the story of the bags made from recycled video and music cassette tapes. They are made by a group of artisans that belong to an organization that helps children and adults with disabilities read more…

 

 

Amar Jyoti

There is a school in Delhi that takes children off of the streets and helps them become self-sustainable, respectable citizens. They raise income making newspaper bags, and this is their story read more…

 

 

Traditional Wood Block Printing

Many artisans around India are given merit as artists. Such is the case with this cooperative, who make products following a wood-block printing technique. They only use natural dyes, and fair trade has helped them bring their traditional art to a modern context read more…

 

CRC Bell Making Artisans

We carry fair trade, copper bells made by both men and women artisans. This is the story of how they make the bells, and how fair trade helps them read more…

 

 

Diane’s Paperwork

This non-profit organization helps the artisans that make the elegant jewelry that Bright Hope International used to carry. SETU- the Bridge to Artisans is now supporting this group read more…

 

 

IFFAD

A compelling story of women’s development, equity and the fostering of creativity. These artisans create our batik products read more…

 

Sandur

The artisans who make our line of “Cosmic” products belong to an organization whose aim is to promote and preserve the traditional craft of the region and provide employment to rural women. This organization works with tribal Lambani women artisans who face challenges such as drought read more…

 

Mahila Bunkar Sahakari Samiti

These partner artisans make some of our home decor items. The cooperative works with tribal Schedule women artisans who face challenges such as seizing of land and rural to urban lifestyle transitions read more…

 

 

Jana Jaagran : Shramik Artisans

This is the story of our jute and cotton bags, such as the Nature Nectar. We identify these artisans as the Shramik Artisans, which means “laborer” in Hindi read more…

 

 

HSSS: The Wood Masters

Find out who makes our amazing wooden products such as the cat puzzle box, the wooden top, the earrings stand or the eye glass holder! This is one of the few cooperatives we work with that is composed mainly of men. We used to get their products from ASHA Handicrafts, but SETU- the Bridge to Artisans prefers to work directly with the small artisan groups to make sure Fair Trade practices are really practiced read more…

 

Joo Handicrafts

This is one of the newest artisan groups SETU- the Bridge to Artisans has been working with. They live in the troubled Kashmir region of North India. Traditionally, they depended on selling their handicrafts to tourists in the area. An increase in violence in the region has resulted in a decrease in tourists, so the artisans have found a new avenue to sell their products through us read more…

 

West Bengal Artisans

The artisans who make our Jute expressions bags are located in the West Bengal region of India. They belong to a nonprofit organization that works to better the standing of women, children, marginalized castes, the mentally and physically handicapped and the disadvantaged read more…

VGS Batik

VGS is a non-profit charitable society based in Gujarat. Founded in the year 1988, VGS works with the mission of developing traditional Kutch art and encouraging women empowerment. It also provides training and market support to the artisans read more…

 

 


Swechha

Swechha is a Delhi based NGO; established with the basic aim of raising awareness on environmental issues and providing secure employment with reasonable wages for disadvantaged people read more…

Kasuthi Embroidery Group

Kasuthi is a voluntary-based organization located in the arid districts of North Karnataka in South India. It works to empower women coming from marginalized sections of the society. It was set up with the aim to make women self-sustainable, specifically reviving Traditional crafts of Lambani (a Tribal Community), Kasuthi and others read more…

 

HEED Handicrafts

HEED Bangladesh (Health, Education and Economical Development) is a Christian, Non Governmental and Non-Profit, National Organization, formed in 1974, by several Western Partner Organizations, to support people displaced by ‘Liberation war of Bangladesh’ in 1971 read more…

 


Kala Raksha

Kala Raksha means “Preservation of Art. Kala Raksha is thus a grass roots social enterprise dedicated to preservation of traditional arts of the region by making them culturally and economically viable.

This project was established in Kutch in 1993. It focuses on embroidery artisans practising fine traditional embroideries as well as their skills in suf and Kharek embroidery styles. It works with nearly 1,000 embroidery artisans of seven ethnic communities read more…

AAGOR

Aagor Dagra Afad grew out of a project called “Weaving Peace” initiated in 2002 by THE ANT, the project built on the highly skilled weaving traditions of tribal communities to bring wages and employment to local women read more…

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