Rae's Journal

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    Postcards From Greece

    Our new 'Postcards From' series is a collation of this seasons social media posts. Offering us style inspiration and context of seeing your Rae Feather accessory in the world.

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    A post shared by Jess Meyrick ✧☽ (@thewonderingdreamer) on

     

  • About a year into launching the monogram basket, I felt there was a need to create a monogram bag that served the same purpose as a basket but would become almost a “bag for life”. I was at a fair in Paris and met a wonderful lady who had just what I was looking for. After heavily admiring her collection, we got talking.

    canvas classic

    Sheenagh had worked for the UN. She had been sent to Bangladesh to educate and help implement means of birth control to women in remote towns and villages.

    For Sheenangh, this proved to be a major challenge in that the majority of the women she met had been brought up to believe their only job in life was to procreate. If they did not marry young, many were forced to become young sex workers.

    After much research, it was discovered that those who worked and were financially independent, followed advice regarding birth control. They felt valued and had a purpose outside that of giving birth.

    Screen Shot 2019-07-05 at 16.52.10 (2)

    She found a small group of women from rural communities who were fabric weavers. These women had little to no education. They married very young and by the age of 18 could have had 2-4 children. For many, this was the first time they had ever earned an income.

    Their salary really mattered. They could contribute to family expenditure for the first time, and their first priority when you ask them is always education, education, education of their kids and particularly their daughters, for whom they wish a life with far greater opportunities than they ever had.
    Canvas Straw Fringe

    The woven cloth was then sent to Dhaka to be tailored and produce the finished products. A number of the women making the bags used to be sex workers in the city. They were taken to a safe environment by the NGO and trained in tailoring by voluntary women groups. They are now paid, not only a fair wage, but get paid for over-time and have a regular health check offered to them on site by the NGO.

    I guess the essence of the above is to say how much it pleases me that as a brand, we can work with organisations like the above and give a little back. I should however add that most of what we do has an element of fair trade attached. Much of manufacturing for example, is done in India. When we first find factories, they are thoroughly researched. I ensure they operate in a very transparent manner. I ask for a tour. I engage with the work force and ask the necessary questions, to ensure we are working with reputable organisation.

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  • Firstly, I apologise for the fact that we lapsed in the blog department in the last months but the good news is, we're back and I want to kick off with a trip we did recently to Essaouria, Morocco.

    Essaouria Streets

    Marrakech, as we know, has been at the forefront of many people’s bucket list over the past few years. It’s perfect for a mini break. Not too long a flight and you arrive in what is culturally a very different world. On my first visit I likened it to going on to huge film set. I was blown away by the colour, the people, the food, the architecture, the noise, the atmosphere, the diversity…

    We wanted to shoot 2019 Spring Summer Collection somewhere a little raw, colourful, atmospheric and most importantly we needed strong chance of good light/sunshine. Morocco in early March ticked all the boxes and we chose the coastal city (small city) of Essaouria, 2 and half hours north of Marrakech.

    rfshots

    Formally known as Mogador, the name means “The Picture”  in Arabic and it is a painters dream. Lots of vibrant colours everywhere.... bright blues, whites, pinks and oranges. The Port surrounded by sand stone walls contrasting with the colourful fishing boats.

    Along the port are masses of little outdoor restaurants. Important to note, none serve alcohol and they are all fighting for business so be prepared to be bombarded however, when you do make your choice it’s very calm. I would guess all are the same standard and same price.

    We stayed in Riad Malaika. The host was charming and the staff so helpful HOWEVER, the chef was off the scale. A 24 year old girl who was so passionate about cooking that from young age watched You Tube videos of really high end French chefs and is totally self taught. I rarely have eaten so well. We were all blown away.

    Check out their website for more details and arrange a stay! : http://riad-essaouira-malaika.com/home-3/

    Follow them on Instagram: @riad.malaika

    riamaliakafood

    There are many Riads in Essaouria and I would strongly recommend staying in a Riad as opposed to a hotel. Instagram is brilliant for research. We shot in one of the loveliest I have ever seen - 5 columns. Owned and restored by an English couple.

    5columnsessouria

    Check out their website for more: http://www.5-columns.com

    Follow them on Instagram! @5.columns

    In short, Essaouria is well worth a visit. I might even suggest a 2 stop trip. Marrakesh and Essaouria. Hire a car but BEWARE of very corrupt traffic police. Stick to speed and signs. They do not take credit cards - say no more!!!

    ENJOY AND IF YOU DO DECIDED TO VISIT PLEASE REACH OUT FOR ANY TIPS WE MIGHT HAVE.

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