The Narrative Collection is exploring the connection between art and storytelling while inspiring a thoughtful connection to the maker and her journey to empowerment. Each design in The Narrative Collection was inspired by a photo and translated into a quilt's compositional pattern, today, we are taking a closer look at the Asha design.
Asha means hope in Hindi, the native language of Anchal artisans. The Asha design was inspired by the hope given to women through the Anchal community and the promise of sustainable work. From a photograph of one artisan Neetu, shapes and patterns were defined and transformed into contemporary textiles.
Creative Director, Maggie Clines, shares the story behind the intentional design of the Asha collection.
What was the initial inspiration behind the Asha design?
As Colleen and I were choosing the photographs we were planning to use, Neetu's smile stopped us in our tracks. This photograph, taken by our past team member Tess O'Keefe, captures the hope of every artisan in Anchal's program. Anchal artisans face such sadness and hardship - our goal is to see more smiles. Every smile is a step towards a confident future.
What about this photo illustrates hope to you?
Neetu has been with Anchal for over 4 years. Over the course of these four years she has made significant changes in her life stating, “My husband does not work consistently. This job has given my family stability to run the house, purchase food and educate my children properly.” What an incredible milestone!
She also shared, “I have learned to measure with an inch tape and can make clothes for my children now! I never believed I could make something so beautiful. I enjoy working at the Anchal center and the homely environment.”
Knowing Neetu's story, and seeing the joy on her face, is all the hope a new artisan needs to make their first step in joining our global sisterhood.
Can you share your favorite pieces from the Asha collection?
Hmmm... I would have to say the Asha Throw, though I love the pillows, every time I look at the Asha Throw I imagine artisans like Neetu measuring each cross-stitch. The Asha Throw is our most complex and intricate piece - it is a testament to the determination & growing skills of the Anchal team in India.
Not only are these pieces beautiful but they make an impact. What does it mean to purchase a product from this collection?
Each purchase from this collection is an act of hope. By investing your money & heart into Anchal's products, you are investing in Neetu's future. You become the reason Neetu smiles.
Each piece is handmade by your didi connecting you back to her story. With every purchase made from Anchal, you are not only buying an heirloom quality product, but also investing in the future of the woman who made it - giving her hope of an empowered future.