Studio 189 is an artisan-produced fashion lifestyle brand and social enterprise based between New York (USA) and Accra (Ghana). The bag was designed and produced in the Studio189 Product Development Center in Accra and with the NGO ASIGE in the Northern region of Ghana, in support of women in rural communities
All proceeds from the sale of the bag will be donated to The Hunger Project organization
AMSTERDAM , April 4, 2022 /PRNewswire/ -- Amsterdam -based fashion brand Scotch & Soda announces the launch of 100 limited-edition raffia "Born to Love" bags in collaboration with Studio 189, a fashion lifestyle brand and social enterprise co-founded in 2013 by actress Rosario Dawson and luxury executive Abrima Erwiah. Based in New York City and Accra , Studio 189 is a platform that helps to promote and curate African and African-inspired fashion by supporting community-led projects, primarily in West Africa . The Scotch & Soda bag is designed and developed by Studio189 in the product development center in Accra and handcrafted in Bolgatanga by a community of weavers led by ASIGE (Advocacy for Social Inclusion and Girls Education), a non-governmental organization focused on the empowerment of women through work and education.
Studio 189's mission is to use fashion as an agent for social change, aiming to create well-designed products as sustainably as possible, whilst focusing on job creation, education, and training for women in particular. The brand collaborates with various communities across Ghana that specialize in traditional artisanal techniques that are open to upskilling and to continuously improving their work.
Launched as part of the latest Scotch & Soda 'Born To Love' capsule collection for Summer 2022, the bag joyfully celebrates unity and togetherness, as shown by the word 'LOVE' woven into the design across the front.
The bag design is rooted in the concept of love and is made with love by women working together in community using materials and colors found in nature. The color palette is inspired by the flowers, plants and herbs in Ghana . Created using traditional basket weaving techniques unique to the upper East area of Bolgatanga, the bags were woven in a horizontal pattern featuring both colorful and neutral stripes giving it an abstract rainbow-like appearance. The bags were made from locally sourced Palmyra leaf fibers, commonly known as raffia, which is naturally dyed using vegetal pigments extracted such as from hibiscus, millet husk and plant leaves, The artisanal process requires three to four weeks for the preparation of the materials, prior to the actual weaving stage. It then takes one week for an experienced weaver to make a basket bag. This product is made using no-waste manufacturing and sustainable materials.
For the collaboration with Scotch & Soda, Studio 189 chose to have the basket bags woven by ASIGE. Founded in 2016 by Dorcas Apoore, ASIGE invests in social programs and vocational training. The weaving of the bags is part of a larger initiative that provides work for local communities, made up primarily of women of all ages (from 18 years old and up), including widowers, young mothers, and grandmothers. The weaving work is a source of much needed income to support their basic living expenses and is adapted to their personal lives and schedules. ASIGE works with several communities in Bolgatanga that include both experienced and inexperienced weavers. Lead by Elizabeth Adongo and Nboo Avea, the community chosen to weave the Scotch & Soda bags is composed of 76 people, from which 41 women and one man were selected based on their higher weaving skills. The group was trained by Raymond Adongo , Elizabeth's husband. An additional staff of 45 people from Studio189 in Ghana , primarily women, worked on this project between the factory, the studio, photography and video. The production of the bag activates an entire supply chain from design/development to raw materials to manufacturing to marketing to education.
The limited-edition love bag will retail for 149,95 euros (179 USD ) and will be available on the Scotch & Soda website, as well as in a selection of the brand's stores. All proceeds from the sale of the bags will be donated to Scotch & Soda's partner, The Hunger Project, to support the organization's initiatives in countries like Ghana .
Dorcas Apoore, Founder and CEO of ASIGE, declared: "Investing in women and girls is one of the surest ways to reach our sustainable development goals. When women are equipped with technical skills, they can rise above the poverty line in Ghana and in Africa as a whole." Apoore added: "We are very happy to be working with Scotch & Soda. Since they came into our lives, we've seen the impact on our people. We look forward to a positive development with Studio 189, Scotch & Soda, and our community."
Abrima Erwiah, Co-founder and President of Studio 189, said: "Through our collaboration with Scotch & Soda, we have been able to bring to life the "Born to Love Bag", made in Ghana by women artisans by hand using locally sourced materials, in harmony with the planet. We are grateful to Scotch and Soda for entrusting us to translate their vision into reality and to use their platform to help amplify our message. It's about dignity and about working together, honoring everyone's work and contributions and delivering a project that is well designed, filled with Community, Joy and Heart."
Stéphane Jaspar, CMO of Scotch & Soda, commented: "I have been following Abrima's project for years now and we are thrilled that we were able to partner together on this project as part of our 'Born To Love" collections. It is a great opportunity to bring more awareness on her amazing mission and on the artisanal craftsmanship of rural communities in Africa , whilst supporting The Hunger Project's initiatives in countries like Ghana ."
About Studio 189 (Studio One Eighty Nine)
Co-founded by Rosario Dawson and Abrima Erwiah, Studio 189 is an artisan produced fashion lifestyle brand and social enterprise that is as a recipient of the prestigious CFDA/VOGUE fashion fund and has also won the prestigious CFDA Lexus Fashion Initiative for Sustainability. The brand is made in Africa and produces African and African-inspired content and clothing.
The brand currently operates a store in Accra (Ghana ), an ecommerce site, a manufacturing facility in Accra , and supports various community led projects in Africa and in the USA . Studio 189 works with artisanal communities that specialize in various traditional craftsmanship techniques including natural plant-based dye indigo, hand-batik, kente weaving and more.
Studio 189 focuses on empowerment, creating jobs and supporting education and skills training and partners with organizations such as the United Nations ITC Ethical Fashion Initiative, Warby Parker , Cosabella, and more.
The first collection launched on February 14th 2013 in honor of One Billion Rising. The mission took shape following a trip with Eve Ensler's V-Day and Dr. Mukwege's Panzi Hospital in February 2011 , through Kenya , Burundi and Rwanda to Bukavu in the Democratic Republic of Congo for the opening of the City of Joy
For more information, please visit: www.studiooneeightynine.com
Established in 2016, ASIGE (Advocacy for Social Inclusion and Girls Education) is a non-governmental, non-profit organization based in Bolgatanga, in the Upper East Region of Ghana . ASIGE works with rural communities to design colorful and customized baskets and bags for local and international markets. The non-profit organization focuses on areas such as women empowerment, girls' education, disability Inclusion, gender equality and poverty reduction.
Ran by Dorcas Apoore (founder and CEO) and her husband Simon Adongo Ayimbire (Administrator), ASIGE provides training in basket weaving to women in rural communities in the Bolgatanga area, creating a market for their products. Additionally, the social enterprise enrols girls into vocational training, provides sensitization on sexual and reproductive health rights and supplies sanitary pads to schools.
Dorcas Apoore holds a bachelor's degree in Development Planning and is graduated from the University for Development Studies in Ghana . Apoore was selected as one 16 young leaders from around the globe to participate in the 2018 EDD (European Development Days), held in Brussels . She is an advisory board member at the World Bank's global program S4YE (Solutions for Youth Employment), and a business member at CAMFED (Campaign for Female Education) in Ghana . Simon Adongo Ayimbire, holds a bachelor's degree in Accounting Education and is a chartered accountant with a vast work experience.
Founded in 1977, The Hunger Project is a global, non-profit, strategic organization committed to the sustainable end of world hunger. The organization runs programs in 22 countries throughout Africa , South Asia and Latin America and reaches more than 15,8 million men and women, empowering them to end their own hunger, lead lives of self-reliance, meet their own basic needs and build better futures for their children.
The Hunger Project pioneers sustainable, grassroots, women-centered strategies and advocates for their widespread adoption. Through the organization's programs, 500,000 trained local leaders in 14,500 rural villages work to lead their own community out of hunger and poverty.
Scotch & Soda has been a partner of The Hunger Projects since 2020. For more information, For more information, please visit: www.thp.org
Born in Amsterdam , Scotch & Soda celebrates the free spirit of its birth city. Endlessly optimistic, the brand champions individuality, authenticity and the power of self-expression to create the unique – an attitude reflected in its designs. The Scotch & Soda collections include menswear, womenswear, kidswear, denim, eyewear, fragrances, and accessories, occupying a unique space in today's global fashion landscape.
Collections can currently be found globally in 252 freestanding stores across Europe , North America , Asia , the Middle East , Africa and Australia , as well as in 7,000 doors in some of the world's biggest cities, including New York , London and Paris . The brand's online operations also ship to over 70 countries.
For more information, please visit: www.scotch-soda.com
Please click on the links below to download: 1) Images of the Scotch & Soda x Studio 189 project (Photo credit: "Courtesy of Studio 189 – Photos by Daniel Kons ")
2) Still life image of the Scotch & Soda x Studio 189 limited-edition bag (Photo credit: "Courtesy of Scotch & Soda")
Media enquiries Daniel Urrutia | Communications Director | email@example.com
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