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Updated: Feb 4



This capsule collection is very close to my heart. When I found out about Saheli Women I just knew we had to work with this incredible non-profit. We decided to create special pieces that will marry the center's work ethics with my designs.


First, I wanted to focus on one type of material and that was linen. Linen doesn't only feel amazing on your skin but it is also sustainable. It uses a fraction of the water that Cotton does and it doesn't require pesticides to grow. It is also one of the oldest textiles in the world, dating back to 30+ thousand years. And to keep this natural material intact, we used beautiful natural dyes that come from plants, minerals, flowers and spices like Turmeric and Saffron.


At the Saheli center, located in the rural village of Bhikamkor, near the city of Jodhpur in India, women are given the opportunity to start their lives as artisans, receive training, education and financial independence. We knew the training would take longer than expected, about 2 months before the development of samples begin, but we were prepared for it. We are following a 'Slow Fashion' model after all and we are not trying to chase after a fashion calendar, we are actually completely against it. We prioritize on the worker's well being and livelihood.

Above you can see Barthi, learning how to develop our signature hand crochet stitch technique. Barthi, who was recently employed by Saheli, didn't have any prior work experience as an artisan. Girls and women from rural villages in India are still expected to help at home, work in the fields and become stay at home mothers, while men get to go to school in order to have a job and earn a living to provide for their families.


Madhu (founding mother of Saheli Women and the non-profit organization IPHD) has given these women a reason to start a new chapter in their lives. They now receive health care, education, a living wage and become part a wonderful support group. Madhu and I normally communicate through Whatsapp, she is constantly sending me pictures of the process and sharing stories about the artisans. This is by far the best part of my job. To realize that your work is making an impact in someone else's life truly makes it worth every sweat and tear.


Here is an amazing video of Barthi learning how to read and write while at her job. After she joined the Saheli center she was inspired to complete her schooling and she is also really enjoying her new hand crochet skills ; )


Thank you for being here...

With love and gratitude,


Karenine Arraya

Designer and Founder





We are so proud to be working with IfundWomen, a crowdfunding platform that empowers women entrepreneurs.


As you know, for the last 11 months, I've been developing and manufacturing my own women's contemporary brand. I am so excited to finally share my hard work and offer you first access to our limited edition 'Saheli bag'!

Just click on this link https://ifundwomen.com/projects/nineh and you can learn about my campaign.

Even more, you can help Ni.nêh launch by purchasing the tote bag made by 'Saheli Women', a non-profit manufacturer in the rural village of Bhikamkor, Rajasthan, India. 

Saheli is part of IPHD, an non-profit organization that makes sure female workers are paid a living wage, work under safe conditions, and it also runs the only all women's clinic in their village. 

Saheli is one of the reasons why I am launching Ninêh and why I need your help.

Our Saheli tote bag is made in black cotton canvas and trimmed with traditional Rajasthani print found in the local market.


Our quantities are limited, so come get them here: https://ifundwomen.com/projects/nineh


Each hang tag comes with a picture and a special thank you from a Saheli artisan. By purchasing a tote bag you will help protect the livelihood of these wonderful women artisans.


Thank you for supporting Ni.nêh!!


Karenine Arraya

Designer and Founder



This week we are celebrating the color that every woman can agree is a timeless season-less classic.




From skirts to blouses, dresses, shoes and any accessory. Red is the one color that is perfect to coordinate. From top to bottom....(Black and white doesn’t count ).




This Fall I created some very special pieces in ‘Lava Red’ keeping each style as versatile as possible, so you can wear them at the office or to any social event. To add to the beauty of this color, I am sharing with you the story of how they were created. Keep reading below...




I am working with a small factory in Delhi, which specializes only in 100% silk. They only take small quantities because they are focused on quality and not quantity.

They mainly produce high end Saris, which are sold locally and are very exclusive. The owner invested in a graphic team that creates the most beautiful digitized prints, in huge scales. See picture below (notice the size of the dress on the left)

Digitized prints don’t need minimums and most Saris are one of a kind. Nothing is over produced and no waste is created.


I, off course, don’t design Saris, but after I met the owner of this factory and explained to him my brand's mission, he agreed to create some unique pieces that would marry my design aesthetic with his workers beautiful craftsmanship and luxurious silk qualities.




During my trip to India, I also found a leather manufacturer in Gurugram, in the state of Haryana. They work with very prestigious brands in Europe and the US and what I loved about this factory is that it's literally in a big house in the middle of a suburb. And all the workers are treated like family.

They also take small orders (less than 25 pieces) and their workmanship is absolutely beautiful. Their leather comes from Chennai and are not treated with chromium, which is extremely harmful to their workers health. Chromium-free leather also extends the life of the leather by decades if not centuries. No wonder vintage leather is still the best, it could last forever if well taken care of.




Ni.nêh is not just about sustainability and high end design, but we are about Dignity and Respect.


Make sure to check these 'Red Hot' pieces when we open our online shop this October.


Love and thanks!

Karenine


Credits:

Model-Casilda Gonzales @caskyes

Photographer-Pablo Arraya @parraya

Make up-Angela Boswell @angelaboswellmua

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