March 29, 2012

Architectural Digest Home Design Show 2012, part three

Alpaca is soft.  Like, one step behind cashmere soft.  Who knew?

I found this out when I visited the D. Bryant Archie Textiles Booth.

Bryant Archie in her eponymous booth

First, let me say that Bryant herself is a lovely woman, very warm and welcoming despite the fact that it was the third excrutiatingly long day, and her feet were killing her.  I found myself feeling just a little jealous of her intern -- I think she's probably a pretty cool person to work for. 

Anyway, (big surprise here) I reached out and touched that cozy looking brown and blue striped throw that you see just behind Bryant.  It's made of alpaca wool, and it is soft.  Really soft.  My middle daughter has been saying for years that she wants to raise alpaca when she grows up.  Normally I just smile when she says this.  Now, I'm researching the living requirements of a small herd.  Yeah, it's that soft.

But, of course, alpaca isn't the only textile Bryant uses.  She has a new line of cotton pieces that are woven by Mayan weavers in Guatemala.  This is the Maya Chief Blanket.

Maya Chief Blanket by D. Bryant Archie Textiles

Whether you choose Tangerine Tango or Wyethe Blue, or if you even go with neutrals, you're covered here!

So yeah, the pillows and throws are beautiful and all.  But this is a company that gives back in any number of ways, from sound environmental practices to assuring fair wages and the continuation of native practices in indigenous communities.  From the website:

"Just as important as the opportunity to dream and to make my dreams come true, I want to honor both the indigenous artists and artifacts that inspire our work and the native people who shear, dye and weave the designs into life.

The weaving of our textiles helps support the livelihoods and hand-looming traditions of artisans in a rural region of Peru. We work with partners who support their education and the education of their children. Furthermore, the process from sorting the fiber by hand to dying, weaving and cleaning of the final piece is kind to the environment.

In order to insure the passage of ancient weaving techniques continue through generations, we support the preservation of native textiles and artifacts through select domestic and international organizations and institutions. We also support local causes of those in need around us here in New York City.

And finally where possible we source and produce locally. For example the fabrication of custom projects are done in NYC’s Garment District. "

(click here to read the entire text on D. Bryant Archie's website)

So that leaves me with the dilemma......

The Usonian Pillow for my living room.......

Or the Denov Pillow for my bed?

Maybe both?

~ Leigh

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