• hand painted pouches
    INTERVIEWS,  Lokal

    The Hand Maid – A Lady Crafts and Upcycles

    Starting off 2019 with a local shop feature that is so long overdue. I came across @thehandmaidph on Instagram, and was glad to found that founder and maker, Mai Fianza-Sarmiento is actually based in the same city I live in, Baguio. The Hand Maid is a strong advocate of recycling and handcrafts, making market totes out of upcycled flour sacks and macrame out of old shirt yarns among other reusables. I have yet to go and buy myself one of her planter hangers and tote bags, and hopefully get to meet Mai in person soon but in the meantime, let’s get to know more about the lady who crafts and…

  • Olivia and Diego upcycled fashion
    INTERVIEWS,  Lokal

    Olivia + Diego – Upcycled Out of Happiness

    In my search for finding local,sustainable brands, I first learned about Olivia & Diego on Instagram and  immediately thought, well, here is another successful local label that not only helps keep unnecessary waste out of the landfill, but also offers empowerment and livelihood to women in rural communities, particularly in Davao, Philippines. You may have heard or come across this label too, as they have retailers not just in the Philippines but overseas as well, such as in Australia, Canada, Japan, Germany, and the United States. Olivia & Diego makes fashion accessories out of  discarded t-shirts. Their products are made by hand and come in vibrant, joyful colours – which is very fitting…

  • Habi upcycled woven shoes
    INTERVIEWS

    Habi Footwear – Walk on Weave

    I am thrilled to be featuring a handmade shop from the Philippines to start off the year.  Habi is not just a maker of handcrafted eco-friendly footwear for men, women, and kids, but also a social enterprise that upholds responsible fashion. Founded by Janine Chiong, Paola Savillo, and Bernadee Uy – what began as a college thesis turned out to be a very successful business as a growing number of stockists overseas now carry their brand – both online and brick-and-mortar shops (e.g. QamaySF). In this interview, Janine – President and CEO and Head of Sales & Marketing, talks about how their brand supports sustainability and better the lives of poor families in the country. What’s…