12 Nov

Artesan launches with debut ‘Patois’ Collection

ARTESAN – which has just launched with its debut ‘Patois Collection’ – is a luxury slow-fashion brand that uses up-cycled and vintage materials integrated with heritage African crafts to create unique gender-neutral utilitarian garments.

With sustainability in mind, the brand is dedicated to creating minimal waste and give vintage a new lease of life. For the debut ‘Patois’ capsule collection, the brand has collaborated with women’s communities in Cameroon and Kenya to create a range of reworked vintage military garments, combined with heritage African beadwork. Sourced in the UK from army surplus, the garments are then deconstructed and refitted in a London workshop, before sending the patterns to Cameroon where they are hand-beaded. The process takes up to 6-8 days to complete and each item is numbered and limited.

Artesan’s Background: This Patois collection is inspired by Cameroons Grassland culture and Bamileke royal beadwork. Drawing-up inspiration from her own Bamileke roots, Artesans’ Parisian-born Creative Director Anne-Lise Fotso – who is a Parsons School of Design graduate – launched the brand with the aim to celebrate craftsmanship, while remixing the symbolism of African beadwork with European army garments for a modern retrospective. Through artisan production, she wanted to create the opportunity to integrate craft techniques into the collection; creating the opportunity for the artisans to develop their skills whilst connecting consumers more deeply with the people and processes behind the garment.

Anne-Lise Fotso is the creative force behind ARTESAN. Founding the brand from a passion for quality, craftsmanship and individual expression. The three continents in which she has worked and lived have inspired her deeply – their people, their style, their culture. She has seen how ethical and sustainable approaches to fashion can maximise the benefits for local communities and the environment. ARTESAN is a culmination of both her professional and personal experiences.

19 Mar

Vote For The Visit Britain Tourism Superstar!

Its that time of year again, when Visit Britain, ask us to vote in their annual Top 10 ‘Tourism Superstar’ competition – this year featuring our very own Jess Twitchin from QuirkyAccom!

The annual Tourism Superstar competition recognises the dedication and passion of those working in the tourism industry and is awarded to an individual who goes above and beyond the call of duty to ensure visitors to England have an unforgettable experience.

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19 Jan

Veganuary Top Tips

So, you’ve committed to try veganism for January (or Veganuary as its been renamed!), only to realise that its more than just your diet that needs re-inventing…

Step forward Pravera Direct the healthy lifestyle website that specialises in selling certified natural, organic and vegan skincare, beauty & lifestyle products – who have collated a wide selection of vegan-certified products for those wishing to give veganism a try.  Read more

13 Oct

The Cult of Halloween

Halloween, which has often failed to entice Britain’s into the same frenzy of America, is in the process of a renaissance. Interest in cultural celebrations have given profile to a variety of world festivals, many focused on honouring passed loved ones. From Cambodia’s Ancestors Day, Pchum Ben, to Brazil’s, Dia de Finados, and Mexico’s famous, Dia de los Muertos. Halloween, far from just carved pumpkins and apple bobbing, offers a rewarding insight into the heritage of our world’s continents.

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24 Mar

Easter Traditions

So, its nearly Easter and with over 80 million Easter eggs sold in the UK each year and sales at Easter time, equating to 10% of the UK’s chocolate spending for the whole year – many of us now associate the holiday with a bumper crop of bank holidays and chocolate coated calories…Read more

17 Mar

Lucky Talisman Jewellery

Its St Patrick’s Day and we’re feeling the lucky of the Irish rubbing off on us! From the Four Leaf Clover to the ever-popular Hamsa Hand, we’ve decided to look into the superstitions and original beliefs behind some well-known, lucky talisman jewellery…

THE FOUR LEAF CLOVER – Formed of three heart shaped leaves, the Shamrock is the lucky emblem of St Patrick’s Day (alongside the traditional Leprechaun of course). Its name originates from the Irish term Seamróg that has morphed over the centuries into the modern day term. Similar to the traditional Shamrock, the Four Leaf Clover is often mistaken for the iconic St Patrick’s Day signifier.  Each of the four leaves represent an element of good will – said to bring the holder Faith, Hope, Love & Luck, whilst also helping to ward off evil, witchcraft & bad omens. But beware, the luck of the clover is said to disappear if it is passed to another person, so be sure not to let it out of your sight!

LUNAR & SOLAR – Often depicted in delicate tattoos; Sun & Moon symbols are often used without full knowledge of their links to good fortune. The Sun is generally associated with the Fraternal, whilst the moon is a key Maternal symbol, with links to a female goddess. Solar symbols are also thought to represent rebirth, strength & power with the circular forms making reference to the concept of the circle of life. If the Lunar & Solar Symbols are merged together, it can represent the combining of opposites, showing compromise instead of conflict.

THE HAND OF FAMITA – With variations of the symbol used in Muslim & Jewish cultures, the Hamsa Hand or Hand of Fatima has been globally adapted as a symbol of good luck. The Evil Eye, often found at the base of the palm, is thought to protect you from evil spirits according to folklore superstitions. Widely regarded as a sign that brings the owner good luck, happiness, health & good fortune, Hamsa’s are often found on pendant necklaces & delicate charm bracelets.

Image Credits: 1/2/3/5/6/8 London Road Jewellery 1&5. Tamarzizt 7. Jamie London