So, we are known for our shoes, and accessories. Thus, it would be fair for loyal Meraki lovers to wonder why the newest product on our roster is a blanket. Or rather, several.
There are of course so many reasons behind this. The first being, that we wanted to offer something to customers who love our aesthetic, but didn’t want an accessory. There is also the little bit about Canada being a very cold place to live in, this time of the year. But perhaps most importantly, these artfully designed blankets reflect so much of what we try to do here at Meraki.
They are woven with tales of conscious enterprise, creative entrepreneurship, and of course, sisterhood. This is the story of our blankets.
Upcycling The Sisterhood
If you’ve been reading the latest issues of fashion and lifestyle magazines, then you know that ‘upcycling’ is the buzzword of the season. Essentially, ‘upcycling’ refers to the process of creative reuse. In the fashion and lifestyle space, this means using old, possibly discarded or out of use products, and making something new out of them.
In the case of our blankets, the old products in question were previously loved saris. For this passion project, we partnered with women in rural South Asia, as they carefully selected and laundered old saris. And then, using traditional patchwork, transformed them into vibrantly beautiful blankets.
By upcycling the old garment, we increase its shelf-life. As, instead of ending up in landfill sites, they are reconstructed into stunning additions to your home.
The Green Question
The ultimate potential of upcycling lies in what it can mean for the global fashion and lifestyle industry, in the long-run. All of us are forced to become more cognisant of what kind of an ecological footprint we are leaving on the planet. In light of this, we are becoming more deliberate with our choices, and production choices are no exception.
Here, I think it is pertinent to mention that the waste that the fashion and lifestyle industries are guilty of, predominantly stems from large-scale production. But, even when a brand relies entirely on small-batch production, as ours does, we have to be mindful of our choices. And these blankets reflect our commitment to do just that.
For Every Woman
Apart from which, these unique pieces also reflect our commitment to womanhood. As mentioned, we have partnered with female artisans in South Asia to produce each piece. This is something that we are really proud of, because it really gives us a chance to help empower women economically.
But, something that we strive to uphold in Meraki is the notion of paying it forward. And another way that we are trying to do that, by way of the blankets, is by supporting Nisa Homes , which provides transitional homes for countless women in need. We will be donating blankets for one entire house, which in turn houses and supports approximately twenty women. Our hope is to help make their new (albeit temporary) home a bit more welcoming.
In our own humble way, these blankets reflect our efforts to ensure that whatever we do makes a lasting impact on the people that it involves. Whether they are our partnering artisans, our customers, or the women that will ultimately be helped, we want to add value at every step of the way.
About the Author
Ushah Kazi is a freelance writer, pop-culture junkie, and resident communications expert at Meraki.