New Materials, Brazilian Handcrafting and Fair Trade in Márcia Ganem's Fashion

Brazilian designer Márcia Ganem has managed to bring together in her atelier elements such as a strong material research-policy, traditional-techniques reinterpretation and valuation, and a fair trade production process. For example, she has developed a technique to use polyamide fiber (material found in car tires) with traditional weaving methods, and has come up with a knotted weft with gems that allows new fabric possibilities. In addition, her atelier has a production process committed to the involvement of artisan cooperatives to promote traditional handcrafts and create business opportunities for them. Her 2006 Autumn/Winter collection, named Dândy, used handcraft techniques such as macramé, nhaduti, bobbin lace and knotted weft, and was produced in partnership with communities such as the Saubara Lace Makers Association, composed by 120 women that used their traditional bobbin lace techniques on polyamide fiber, and '25 de junho', a group of embroiderers. By these means, as she says in her website, her collections "have maintained a link between innovation and Brazilian cultural identity, whilst cultivating social responsibility and the sustainability of partner communities", and result in garments that hold "a dialogue between fashion, art and jewelry".
A large group of Brazilian designers has learnt the value of materials research and the appreciation of traditional handcrafts: some of our featured ones are Oficina Nomade, Osklen (who has also worked with Coopa Rocca), Mana Bernardes, and Gente de Fibra. ::Márcia Ganem

Via JC Report

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