Countries of origin: India & Kenya
Salad servers: Transforming extremely hard fallen acacia wood into durable serving pieces takes skill and patience. Working together with their Maasai neighbors in Kenya, Philip and Katy Leakey have created handmade woodcrafting machines and tools to utilize this beautiful hardwood for something more lasting than firewood. Through a tedious three-month process, each server is seasoned, sanded and oiled to ensure the highest quality finished product for safe use in food service.
Salad servers with bone handle: The hardy evergreen African wild olive grows across East Africa, offering fruit, leaves and a beautifully grained wood. Kamba wood carvers in eastern Kenya love using the dense wood with its dramatic grain for their exquisitely carved articles. Nomadic communities also treasure cattle as status symbols, and every part is revered and reserved for use. Cow bone is treated with a batik method, and used as handles to add further appeal to the carved articles. The carvers have found a way to share their everyday articles with the world to create an income for their communities.
Towels – earth-colored: Crafted of 100% hand-loomed cotton, these textiles from MESH are crafted by the BMK Ashram workshop in India, a leprosy colony with a handloom weaving workshop. The income from their products is shared by the entire colony, because many members cannot work due to disabilities, or have difficulty finding work simply due to the stigma of being from a leprosy affected family.
Towels – colorful: Balizen, a registered Fair Trade Federation member, offers home décor items using handmade textiles and natural fibers. They use ecologically sustainable natural materials such as bamboo, vetiver, capiz shell and organic cotton. Everything is handmade by village artisans, or in the Balizen in-house fair trade workshop with the smallest carbon foot-print they can manage.
Largesse curates beautifully presented environmentally-friendly, artisan-made and fairly traded corporate gifts.