The Story of Kayu: Ethics meets Beauty
Kayu is a label based in California that is known for both its beautifully designed and hand crafted bags as well as its high ethical standards. The bags and accessories are skillfully made by craftswomen in Thailand, the Philippines, Indonesia and Malaysia and never in the sweatshop like factories most designers use to manufacture their goods. The company focuses on providing mothers, grandmothers, sisters, daughters, etc. with reliable and comfortable employment. The materials used to craft these gorgeous and unique products are all-natural (think straw, wood, bamboo to name a few) and are crafted in limited quantities, completely by hand.
Kayu founder and designer, Jamie Lim, was born in Texas. and grew up in Southeast Asia (Kuala Lumpur and Hong Kong) before moving back to California to complete her education and launch Kayu Design. She opened shop back in 2008 in San Francisco with an impressive line of bamboo sunglasses which launched her into the pages of Vogue, Elle and InStyle. In 2010 she showcased a line of gorgeous handbags that give back to local communities with each purchase. She became a global presence quickly, known for both her modern design as well as her efforts to conserve the environment. Her ability to have a positive impact on the people and communities creating her products while still creating affordable, consciously made goods is what has since secured her a spot in an ever green-going accessories scene.
Jaime Lim can be found running Kayu from a beautiful 1970's Eichler in California, wearing a breezy kaftan and capturing inspiration from the nature surrounding the office. One of her favorite reads is Rare Bird of Fashion: The Irreverent Iris Apfel and she enjoys collecting batik prints and weaves during her travels.
Now days, Kayu can be found in many of our favorite department stores, such as Nordstrom, as well as retailers on at least five continents and online. She has been featured in mainstream magazines, popular style blogs such as Gal Meets Glam, and on credible online boutiques, spreading her positivity and inspiration. 2% of each handbag sold goes towards Awareness Cambodia which provides school supplies for children.
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