As you know, I have been setting up my etsy shop for quite some time now. I decided to sell my serums solely through this site and instead decided to use my etsy platform for my textiles, organic medicinal salves and organic hydrosols. I just received the textiles last week and have two of each color. The textiles are beautiful hand stitched pillow covers from Hmong villages in rural Laos. They are vibrant and add so much story to wherever it is placed in a household.
For those of you who do not know, the Hmong are an indigenous tribal people found throughout Asia. Hmong means free. Quilts, crafts, needlework, and clothing is embedded in our culture and is how we have passed our history for decades. Brightly colored fabrics are used for all celebrations including: New Years, marriages, births, and death. Embroidery, cross-stitching, and batik are some tools used to create these beautiful designs. I am Hmong American and firmly support Hmong women and children overseas, by ensuring they are paid fairly for the massive amount of time they put into making these quilts. I decided to start this business because I kept seeing Westerners and other communities steal our cultural designs and prints. It was heartbreaking to see my culture appropriated without the proper acknowledgment of how much history, time, and effort goes into preserving this pivotal piece of our culture.
The Hmong people did not have a written language until the 1950’s, and a written language was only implemented because of missionaries. Prior to the 1950’s, the Hmong used paaj ntaub (hand stitched fabric art) to carry on their legacy and history. This is why so much time goes into preserving and creating these pieces. As a people, with no nation, this is one of the many ways we have preserved and held onto our culture. Often times-people will go into the rural villages low bargain with Hmong women, then steal the designs and sell it for a large profit. This is exploitive. Many of the women and children do not know how much outsiders are profiting from their labor. My mission is to create products and partner with women, in these villages, to empower and give them a fair living wage.
Join me and support me with this cause. I will be visiting the women/children in February 2019 if we find success and can update all my supporters on who creates the items in my shop!
To shop, click on the link here:
With hope and light,
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