I've got another amazing Kickstarter campaign to introduce you to today! One of my favorite thing about ethical fashion is that the people who own most of the brands I've worked with have literally built their brand from the ground up, and Hola Lili is no different.
Hola Lili is another emerging brand in the eco-fashion world that was born out of a desire to change the way people buy shoes and to empower artisans in the Philippines, growing the local economy and supporting traditional weaving methods. They are doing things very, very right and creating gorgeous shoes while they're at it — or at least they hope to once their campaign ends.
Their Kickstarter campaign launched only a few days ago and they're already fully funded — proof of people's desire for beautiful shoes that don't come at the expense of others or the planet.
Hola Lili's founders, Meg and Jiggy, have been friends for over 15 years — connected by a love of travel. They created their brand, a traditional, handwoven line of women's flats, combining classic styles with patters and fabrics unique to the Philippines.
To create their shoes, they use handwoven textiles and time-honored techniques, highlighting the talent and culture of their master weavers. The soles of the shoes are made with recycled tires, making them extremely durable and eco-friendly and the soles are made of leather, making them extra supportive and comfortable.
I had the opportunity to ask Meg and Jiggy a few questions about their story and their goals for Hola Lili once their campaign is over, and their answers are as inspiring as their business model:
Can you introduce yourselves in a few sentences?
We are Meg (American) and Jiggy (Filipina). We are MBAs and longtime shoe-lovers who met when we both lived in San Francisco 15 years ago. We’ve kept in touch over the years mainly due to a shared love of travel.
What was the spark that inspired you to create an ethical brand?
When Meg tried the backstrap loom weaving class and worked for hours, she ended up with a tiny piece of fabric. This demonstrated to both of us just how much hard work would go into a piece of fabric. That’s when we decided that we wanted to do something to preserve and share these textile traditions.
What has been the biggest road block along the way?
To improve the lives of weavers, we want to pay a fair price for fabric. That means pricing the end-product at a premium — which means the quality must match the price. For us, this means spending hours working closely with the shoemakers to ensure that the shoes are produced at the quality we need.
What is one thing you wish consumers understood about ethical fashion?
There is a cost to everything. Ethical fashion isn’t cheap but the cost is shared equitably across the supply chain. In some cases (which may not be true for all fast fashion chains), the end price may come cheap but the cost to the laborer may be more than just financial. Sometimes mothers have to work in cities far from their children and that is a social cost that doesn’t get counted.
Once your Kickstarter campaign is funded what is the next step for Hola Lili?
There are many other regions with weaving traditions in the Philippines. We’d like to explore fabrics from those areas and share those in future collections. At some point in the future, we’d like to include fabric from other weaving regions of the world in our brand. At this point though, we’re just itching to create more!
Even though they're fully funded, Hola Lili still needs the added support. They hope to be able to expand their textile supply to be closer to the indigenous weavers, they also hope to include textiles woven from pineapple and banana tree fibers, making their brand as sustainable as possible.
Click here to back their exciting campaign and buy a pair of handwoven, handmade flats or sandals for your Spring and Summer wardrobe.
*This post was compensated by Hola Lili. As always, all sponsored posts are authentic and hand selected by me. Thank you for supporting the brands that make Simply Liv & Co. possible!*