Weaving for change: AAKS raffia summer bags
This season we have a select edit of sustainably woven raffia bags from AAKS in Ghana, hand-woven by female co-operatives the collection celebrates the colour and craftsmanship heritage of the region.
AAKS was founded in 2014 by female designer, Akosua Afriyir-Kumi - after graduating with a fashion degree from Kingston University, she had a vision to create sustainable jobs within Africa, specifically in her home country of Ghana, using the ancestorial skills of artisan weavers, past down through generations - bringing a modern aesthetic and colour palette to their design to marry Ghanianian heritage craftsmanship with a fresh global feel in the AAKS signature style. Since launch AAKS has been shortlisted as an emerging designer from Africa by Vogue Italia and featured in leading fashion magazines around the globe.
Each bag takes about a week to weave by one woman in the hamlets of Northen Ghana, using natural, ecologically harvested raffia and leather in their design. Dyes are formulated in-house for each collection, producing bespoke colour combinations that bring life and vitality to the natural raw materials.
Showcasing a range of weaves, skills and finishes - the collection is completely unique within each season, and even each individual bag will have a sense of identity in its colour and shape, thanks to its hand-woven nature. Each weave adds a 'signature' tag to their finished bag to give women a sense of pride and ownership over their work.
We have an edit of six styles this season, from pom-pom adorned totes to frill edged cross-body styles. I have chosen the styles for their relaxed, boho feel - perfect for summer wardrobe styling.
You can shop the collection online now, with free UK P&P.