A botanical theme—that is where we started, feeling the new life that was popping up amongst our artisan partners after a long pandemic winter. Our design team envisioned large leafy growth, climbing up a white damask caftan, making sure embroidery crept over the shoulder and curled around the back like a young vine stretching to the sun.
The women of Zaria City, Nigeria—also blooming in their new workspace which you, the Ibu Foundation, provided for them—so rendered this lushness in breathtaking form, that we cheered to see the result, the fresh palette so alive.
Not long after the caftan landed in Charleston, the cooperative's leader arrived as well, one of our Global Champions celebrated at our Fringe Revolution event. Hassana Yusuf has worked with Ibu for most of our ten years, leading her group from nine to 35+ women, building a workspace to accommodate those women and their children as they work, and collaborating with Ibu to make of their work a success. It was a joy to see Hassana with other Ibu artisan partners learning from one another, supporting, networking, laughing into the night. And meeting Ibu allies who came to celebrate them.
Clockwise: Hassana Yusuf with Cherry Buttons leader, Wafae Safar of Morocco, at The Fringe Revolution; speaking with Juan Pablo Gomez of El Dorado Edit in Colombia and other artisan leaders at the Charleston Library Society; with guests at the Fringe Revolution sponsor party; with Ibu founder Susan Hull Walker.
Hassana is a part of the greening of her home, the city where women, for the first time, because of her, are now earning the equivalent of men for their skills. Women who now have light where they had none, and I mean solar and electric lights, as well as the blaze of your support and respect.
This is the real botany of desire—the greening of lives, the evergreen of hope when we plant our lives together.
All the best,