The Founder


Ileana Quinones is the founder and creative director of ARTISANS OF IQ. A Puerto Rican native who lives in New York, Ileana remembers her early years in the island where there always seemed to be an explosion of color - the fiery red Flamboyant tree cradling the roof of her grandparents’ home and the dazzling, colored masks and costumes of the vejigante masqueraders during the carnival celebrations.

As a child, Ileana traveled the world with her father and was fascinated by the art and culture of indigenous peoples and developed a deep appreciation for old world architecture and design. While traveling in Cambodia a few years ago, she met many talented women who were skilled in using traditional methods with indigenous materials to produce handmade items which they sold in the markets to support their families. She also encountered local groups focused on re-energizing the ancient art of silk weaving. Ileana was inspired by the innovation and resourcefulness of these women and wanted to give them a voice and an opportunity to share their creativity with the world while shedding a light on Cambodia’s rich silk and metal work traditions. It was this driving force that motivated her to create ARTISANS OF IQ.

With a background in product development and design, coupled with years of buying and sales experience in the fashion industry, Ileana developed a brand dedicated to producing handmade luxury accessories while empowering and uplifting highly-skilled, women artisans. She has a strong desire to help underserved women in Southeast Asia and often travels to Cambodia to train and support those desirous of learning handcrafting arts. Ileana has also engaged master silversmiths and craftsmen in Thailand who are considered among the world’s best and her designs include original beaded handwork from the Ahka and Hmong hill tribes.

Ileana sees herself as a Latina making waves in Southeast Asia with  sustainable handmade luxury that help empower women and she looks forward to exploring neighboring countries and developing new collections with other talented artisans.

Each exclusive collection is uniquely inspired by her travels, mixed cultures and influenced by her Latin heritage. Her designs reflect an old world architectural charm and ancient symbolism, flavored with a bohemian chic and contemporary flair. Signature pieces that are bold and strong, yet elegant for women all over the world who want to make a statement!

 

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