Wednesday, June 8, 2011

The Bootstrap Project

A couple of months ago I received an email from Maxine Kaye, a regular reader of Belle Maison, with the exciting news that she had just launched an organization called the Bootstrap Project. Their mission: "to create a sustainable platform to promote and retain centuries-old crafts and customs. We create the outlet for the local artisans. The profits of the sales go back to the artists and their communities, through our development partners, to empower them by providing the education and opportunity to retain, preserve and advance their fast-dying crafts, customs and way of life. By purchasing through Bootstrap you allow artisans—who act as the catalyst for their whole communities—to end their own poverty. It’s trade not aid."

I absolutely love everything being sold in the Bootstrap's online boutique! The best part is learning a little bit about each artisan and what country they're from. Take a look at the profile of one of the artisans below. I support the Bootstrap Project and their mission 100% - what a wonderful way to bring incredible merchandise to the marketplace from talented and hardworking artisans. Sometimes it's easier to justify a purchase for your home when you know the proceeds are going straight to a great cause, right?!

Artisan Profile: Robiya is the mother of four daughters who all work with her in their in-home workshop. As a client of Bootstrap’s microfinance partner, Imon International, Robiya has built her business from having to rent one sewing machine to owning five. Her daughters are now fifth-generation seamstresses—who pride themselves on producing the highest-quality kurpachas and pillows used in grand weddings in Tajikistan and now in your home too!
{Robiya's Ikat Pillows (also shown above, at top of post}

 {Sodiqjon's Footstool}

{Soliha's Suzani}

"Join the movement, become a change agent – one purchase, one artisan, one village at a time."


  1. Very cool! I love the footstools! It is really amazing what craftswomen make around the world. I wish I knew how to make such beautiful things!!

  2. love the footstool idea and the pillows design. great post. thanks for sharing :)

  3. What a great idea.......Thank you for the heads up!

  4. What a great project - and I love that footstool!


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