Kikoko’s Crushes: Women-Founded Homewares
If you’re anything like us, all the time spent in lockdown over the last year has instigated a new obsession: real estate and interior design “porn.”
Instead of checking Instagram to see the latest Kanye drama, or who wore what to whichever event, you find yourself refreshing Zillow, absolutely shocked that the one-bedroom on 17th is only going for $1.2m, or that you can get a mansion in Italy for the same price. Or scrolling through Made Trade, decorating an imaginary house with all the impractical Scandavian chairs you could ever wish for.
Well, let’s help each other out. Here are a few of our favorite decorative and homeware brands that you should obsess over too.
Founder Becca Stevens is a survivor of child abuse and wanted to create a sanctuary for other female survivors of prostitution, trafficking, and addiction. After recognizing the employment barriers these women faced, Becca started Thistle Farms with the motto, “Love Heals.”
Thistle Farms has expanded from making candles in a church basement in 2001 to producing body and spa products, apparel, essential oils, bags, and wallets. The lavender candle and the geranium bug spray are our favorites.
Founder Hana Getachew was born in Ethiopia, but grew up in New York. She combines her two countries with Bolé Road textiles, which are designed in Brooklyn and handwoven in Ethiopia.
Bolé Road textiles have a clean, colorful and vibrant aesthetic, and all materials are ethically sourced. We especially love their throw pillows.
Malaya is primarily a skin care brand, but their candles are too good to pass up. Founder Katya struggled with cystic acne for years and turned to what she calls “botanical alchemy” for the remedy. All Malaya products are organic, and use all-natural ingredients.
We love everything about the Malaya Aromatherapy candle. It’s made of coconut wax, the healthiest kind of candle it turns out, so no need to fret about its effect on your health or the planet. Plus they burn for 80+ hours. Ingredients like rose, geranium, bitter orange and bergamot transform your living room into the lobby of the Four Seasons.
Sarah Buchanan founded Kula to aid the fight against poverty in Rwanda through the development of it’s entrepreneurs. 100% of Kula’s proceeds fund their business fellowship for women of Rwanda, providing industry training, business investment, leadership skills.
They sell coffee (and coffee accessories), reusable tumblers, to-go coffee mugs and water bottles in partnership with Miir. Their products all feature the landscape line from Gakenke, Rwanda reminding us the story behind the bottle.
Naomi Adeyemo and Rachel Femi didn’t see WOC founders represented in the eco-friendly candle world, and decided to change that with Cavo Candles.
Cavo is uber eco from reusable glass candle containers to biodegradable packing peanuts and tape. All their candles are made from soy wax, so are much better for you than paraffin crap. And each candle comes with a specially curated Spotify playlist to really set the mood. “After a Good Cry” and “Wash Day” are our favs.
Merijam Roelofs’ inspiration for Folk Project came from traditional Central American textiles, specifically huipiles. Folk Project textiles seamlessly marry ancient Mayan ancestral styles and stories with a contemporary aesthetic.
Their textiles are hand-woven in Mexico and Guatemala by women artisans in order to support traditional skills and tell the stories that have begun disappearing in today’s world. Their rugs are the perfect pop of color for any living room or bedroom.
THE LITTLE MARKET
While in Tanzania and Uganda, co-founders Lauren Conrad and Hannah Skvarla met women artisans with incredible talent, but limited access to selling platforms. The rest is history.
The Little Market gives women from around the world the opportunity for economic self-sufficiency through dignified work and fair wages. They primarily source products from refugees, survivors of abuse and trafficking, and people with disabilities. You can shop The Little Market knowing that each dollar spent is going to support a deserving woman and her family.
Aptly named, you can find anything you might need for the house (and yourself). Their blankets and throws are especially lovely.
Founders Angela Richardson and Michelle Richardson founded Pur Home out of the need for non-toxic household cleaning products to use every day.
They do everything they can to reduce their impact on Mother Earth: the laundry detergent packaging is biodegradable and compostable, and their bottles are recyclable. They source their ingredients from clean, ethical companies that share the same minimum-pollution values.
They have everything you need from dish soap and dish tabs to all in one cleaning concentrate. Look no further for a clean household (environmentally and sanitization-wise)!
Bee’s Wrap founder Sarah Kaeck revived an old, pre-plastic food storage practice by infusing organic cotton with beeswax, organic jojoba oil, and tree resin, to create an endlessly reusable (and compostable) wrap to replace plastic film wrap.
They also work with conservationist partners like 1% for the Planet, The Bee Cause, and The Rozalia Project to support ocean conservancy, beach cleanups, and other environmental causes. Say buh-bye to single use plastic wrap and hello to the cutest plastic alternative you’ve ever seen.
Diaspora Co. was founded by Sana Javeri Kadri to decolonize the spice trade out of India. They work with 12 farmers across India, and pay their farmers 6x higher than the current spice commodity trade. And their partner farms are working on some seriously cool stuff in sustainable and regenerative farming; one farmer taught himself how to go chemical-free and organic off YouTube!
All their spices are fresh (guaranteed same-year harvest) and organic, so much more potent than commercialized spices. They have all the best seasonings your spice drawer could desire: turmeric, cumin, cacao, saffron—you name it.
Photos sourced from represented brands.
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