New This Week!
Join us for a new episode in our DESIGNER SPOTLIGHT series, featuring Holly’s interview with Malia Eigelbach, the Brand Director of one of our favorite new brand finds: Sea & Grass Woven Handbags.
Sea & Grass creates stunning handwoven handbags and other accessories made of seagrass. Designed in California and ethically handwoven in Thailand.
Their mission is to create high-quality, sustainable products that combine East and West design elements while giving back to the community.
In this episode, Holly introduces us to Malia, who manages the brand and curates their philosophy of “Nature. Style. Purpose.”
Malia tells us about the origins of this woman-owned company and its commitment to sustainable fashion design and production – which is thoughtfully handmade by passionate artisan weavers in Thailand, the home of the founder.
They pride themselves on the fact that their bags are handwoven by villagers who are paid a fair wage and have created a fund to help provide community support for these artisans.
The fund provides educational subsidies for the children and families that weave their bags.
This company was started over 7 years ago and is a family- and women-run organization.
Pam, the founder, grew up in both Thailand and the U.S. and loves sharing her culture and love for gorgeous bags. Thailand is known for its kind people and excellent artisans.
In Thailand, the centuries-old craft of basket weaving has been handed down from one generation to the next.
Pam has created a sustainable brand that prevents agricultural pollution by creating products made with “seagrass,” also known as the tropical “Water Hyacinth” plant.
Thailand, nicknamed the “Land of Smiles,” is home to many skilled artisans crafting locally made and sustainable products. Basket weaving is an ancient art passed down from generation to generation.
Seagrass, an underwater flowering plant, grows wild all along the shores. It provides a safe habitat for fish and prawns and is the primary food source for turtles.
Dead seagrass washes up on the beach, and Thai weavers collect the offerings. Seagrass, while natural, can clog up roads and sewers, becoming a nuisance for people.
But when it’s dried and weaved into magical creations (from baskets to bags), it becomes unique to that village community, referred to as “one tambon one product” (OTOP).
The process of creating bags takes several days from start to finish. Once the seagrass has been harvested and dried, every single product is hand-woven.
This is not fast fashion, but instead, high-quality, sustainable, durable, functional, and beautiful art.
The final product is more than just a “bag.” The founder, Pam, believes in offering signature handbags and accessories that “elevate lives and closets.” We LOVE this!
New products are being expanded to include Home Décor, Weddings and even Wine!
At Sea & Grass, they believe in the power of education and want to help disadvantaged children dream. With this mission in mind, they created the Areeya Scholarship Fund.
A portion of the profits of every bag sold helps pay the costs of tuition, books, transportation, and other necessities for disadvantaged Thai children.
The majority of the fund goes to the children of the same weavers who create Sea & Grass bags. In addition to paying a fair wage, they further their economic power by helping them afford school for their children, nieces, and nephews. They see the process as a beautiful cycle of entrepreneurship and generosity.
You will love learning about this incredible brand, and we are so grateful to Malia for introducing us to this creative, stylish, and unique brand!
AS A REMINDER: Have you joined Holly’s Book Club yet?
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