South-East Asian Artisans
Karen Hills: Myanmar
The Karen Hills tribe have made the most exquisite silver jewelry for generations. As conflict grew in Myanmar, many were forced to flee into the northern
hills of Thailand. Villages burned and the country went into a state of chaos. They left their homes, their farms, their way of life and are now living in refugee
camps with little opportunity for legitimate income. Many women began selling themselves, desperate to get an income for their families. Yet through silver,
women are able to find a way to get themselves out of prostitution. These artisans are now using their heritage to form 99.9% pure silver into works of art. Please click here to see the jewelry of the Karen Hills Tribe.
Baskets of Cambodia: Cambodia
Created in 1996, Baskets of Cambodia takes incredible care of their artisans. They have a progressive model that provides a healthcare safety net program,
yearly dividends and schooling options. These benefits create quality products and a better Cambodia. Artisans actually deliver raw materials by bicycle from
hut to hut. Since they deliver by bicycle, handicapped Cambodians are able to work from home thanks to the ability to receive materials.
Made of grass reeds, each strand is hand selected and cut precisely, before being dried and dyed. The reeds are then woven into mats with a hand operated
loom that prepares the textures and styles in much the same manner of a silk loom. These woven mats are then crafted into fine reed purses that hold up year
round and are as wearable and durable as a they are a conversation piece.
Please click here to see products made by Baskets of Cambodia.
Craftworks Cambodia: Cambodia
Mrs. Sokha lives in Phnom Penh city with HIV/AIDS. She is recently widowed as well as lost her son at the age of 9 in 2004. However, she has found hope. Her and countless others in Cambodia have the opportunity to work for Craftworks Cambodia, producing unique eco-friendly products.
Living in an underprivileged community approximately 30 minutes from Phnom Penh, Cambodia, artisans make jewelry from recycled bomb shells and bullets. These artisans use bomb casings left over from Cambodia's wartime three decades ago. These artisans skillfully mold bomb shells into beautiful jewelry pieces. With the support of Craftworks Cambodia, the artisans generate an income that will provide their families and their communities the chance at a better future. Through Craftworks Cambodia, the artisans make a fair wage for their work and receive support for education and training in the communities in Cambodia.
Please click here to see products made by Craftworks Cambodia.
Blue Hand: Indonesia
Blue Hand was started in 1994 by a couple, Tracy and Arnie. They backpacked to Bali, fell in love with the country, taught themselves Indonesian and fostered a vision to help the economy with the creation of batik scarves.
Blue Hand scarves are made of the highest quality rayon producing a wash-and-dry garment and with no fading or shrinking. The fabrics are created through
the traditional Indonesian art of batiking. This batiking process involves applying hot wax to the fabric, dyeing the fabric and finally boiling the wax off to reveal the image underneath. The completed fabric dries in the sun. Each color represents a dyeing and waxing process, with every step done by hand. Tracy and Arnie created such a business that all the batiking essentially occurs in the rainforest. Through this outdoor process, all of the products have a very organic feel. Batik is an artisans handmade interpretation. Each batik will therefore have an individuality all its own.
Please click here to see products made by Blue Hand.
Indochine Natural: Malaysia
This cooperative is located on Penang Island, Malaysia, right in the center of the ancient spice trade, where they use traditional handmade methods and spices
including cinnamon, cassia, clove, ginger, and turmeric, to produce a range of exotic handmade natural soap. These soaps are totally free of any synthetic or
chemical additives, and are made using only the finest natural plant-based ingredients available. They provide opportunities for women and disadvantaged
producers to empower them with local production and capacity development as means of improving their living standards.
Please click here to see products made by Indochine Natural.
The Silk Road Fair Trade Market, phone 724-946-8502, firstname.lastname@example.org
located at 115 N. Market, #1, New Wilmington, Pa 16142
Open Tuesday - Saturday (10-5), Thurs evening to 6, closed Sunday and Monday