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Gifts That Give: A Christmas Gift Guide That Gives Back

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Gifts That Give: A Christmas Gift Guide That Gives Back

Sure you could go to the mall. Or you could purchase a gift that does so much more -- it tells an amazing story, helps preserve a heritage, and gives hope to artists across the world.

These are some stylish options that don’t sacrifice on design, but deliver immense impact in the communities they’re hand-crafted.

1. Embroidered Woolen Scarves

This beautifully handcrafted scarf is made by women in Kashmir, one of India’s most contentious states where employment rates are low and divisive politics has kept development at bay.  For women, it’s been even harder to find work, and yet so many Kashmiri women are immensely talented, learning crafts through generations. With scenic, snow-capped mountains as their backdrop, these women sew shawls, scarves, and sweaters with fine wool threads.

We’ve contemporarized a classic Indian design in this scarf. Made from 100% wool yet light and silky soft, it showcases the artisans’ embroidery skills. Simple, elegant, and timeless.

2. The Chantilly Collection

Bones are an unfortunate byproduct of the meat industry. That’s why we looked into how this material could be transformed and repurposed -- rather than left as waste. For generations, civilizations have made jewelry out of horn and bones. We aspired to make something beautiful for the home which had an evergreen design and an understated elegance.  Hence, the Chantilly collection with its muted cream tones and ‘less is more’ attitude.

This bowl (which is available in multiple sizes) is handmade by artisans in Uttar Pradesh, India, one of the country’s most populous states. Artisan communities work individually in their homes and villages, transforming this waste material. A generational art form, all the work is done meticulously by hand, taking artisans up to a full day to complete just one piece.

3. The Tribeca Collection

A few hours outside of Delhi, a community of wood-based artisans have been crafting masterpieces for hundreds of years.  With intricate Mughal inspired designs, metal inlays, and intricate precision, their works are certainly art, not manufacturing.  Yet in recent times, as mass-produced items have flooded the market, the demand for such detailed, labor-intensive pieces has declined.  That’s why a new generation of wood carvers are wondering if they’ll have enough work to sustain themselves and their families.

This Tribeca collection is designed to illustrate their workmanship.  We opted for clean lines, though intricately woven, with simple brass borders, bringing a bit of modernity to this rather age-old trade. Available in a tray, a charger, photo frames, and more, you can easily find the right accent for your dining table or office.

These one-of-a-kind pieces are hard to find at the mall.  Instead, look to buy from artisans from around the world this holiday season and give your living space a more personal touch.

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  • Christina Mariconti
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