Our handbags are made from the Water Hyacinth, an exotic weed grown vigorously in the waters of Southeast Asia.
It's notorious for doubling their biomass in a couple of weeks and cover lakes and ponds entirely; this dramatically affects water flow, blocks sunlight from reaching native aquatic plants, and starves the water of oxygen, often killing fish.
Our artisans are very resourceful and have a solution to this problem by harvesting the plant from the river. They cut the stem which is the most resourceful part of the plant and then lay them out for 2 to 4 days to naturally dry under the sun. Once the stems are completely dry, the artisans use a hand pressure machine to flatten out the stems. This technique creates a soft and usable straw that they can easily braid together. We then create the beautiful molds for the artisans to use.
The bags are then taken to a talented group of artisans that craft silk pom-poms and tassels to finish decorating each style. 12 days of work goes into one piece.