9.20.2013

Ricefield Collective: An Update and Giveaway!

Remember last spring when I was all jazzed up about this Kickstarter?  Well, Ricefield Collective managed to raise $73,045, $48,445 more than their goal and has been going FULL BORE ahead with the project!  It is so wonderful to see a Kickstarter meet it's goals, AND fulfill it's obligations, AND help people!

For those of  you not familiar with Ricefield Collective, they craft handmade knitted accessories with US wool (Quince and Co!) that keep Philippine indigenous people on their ancestral land. Their fall collection is on the site now, and their winter collection will be launching in October. I'm already realizing that I won't have time to knit all the holiday gifts I want to... thinking my daughter's teachers might get hats from Ricefield for their pressies! It's a present I can certainly feel good about!

I'm a lucky as Meredith Ramirez Talusan, one of Ricefield's founders, lives in Ithaca, and we met this week for coffee, chatter,  knitting and so I could get my backer reward in person.  Meredith has a masters in photography and I coerced her into taking pics of me wearing my new cowl and hat.... Thanks Meredith!  I am so excited to make a new local friend! 
My new slouchy cap and cowl!  Meredith caught my bad-ass self! Who knew?
I think this cap has the BEST POM-POM EVER!
My cowl and cap came in a handsewn bag with a photo of Jacinta the woman who knit it... I LOVE that there is this personal piece to Ricefield's packaging.  It is a reminder that a real person made my set!  And also, that baby?  SO CUTE!


Meredith also gave me a beautiful handwoven bag made by some of the women in the collective on floor looms.  Anna Maltz, the design director behind Ricefield, designed the bags and worked with the weavers to bring them to fruition when she was in the Philippines earlier this year. 
Meredith explained to me that though there are about about seven looms at the local weaving center, only three women work there now, and they're not passing on their skills to the next generation because the amount of work they have has steadily diminished. Weaving in the Philippines is becoming a lost art as the second-hand clothing industry that has displaced much of the woven fabric production in the region.  I'm not sure if the bag will go into production or not, but it would be great to get those looms humming again!
photo credit: Anna Maltz
And guess what? Ricefield also gave me a bag for you!  Who wants a chance to win it?  I'd love to hear what you think of this venture, I for one, am thrilled to see the change being brought to Ifugao! Leave a comment by the end of the day on September 25th!

I'm off to the Fingerlakes Fiber Festival this weekend and I'm bringing my new bag!

62 comments:

  1. I love it! It would be so sad to see these skill lost forever!

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  2. I literally got chills when you showed the picture of the woman who knit your hat and cowl. So very cool!!

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  3. excellent venture..... best wishes for success....
    thanx for the opportunity...

    s cree

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  4. Wow! That's inspiring. I love that there is a picture of the knitter and her family. I hope that the weaving part gets off the ground because that is a beautiful bag!

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  5. Very touching and inspiring!
    MMahoney on Ravelry

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  6. the hat and cowl are beautiful. so is the bag it came in and the photo. I LOVED the woven fabric that we saw in Guatemala (and brought some home!). These textiles are very special.

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  7. Nice to know of a great place to get handmade gifts! Thanks!

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  8. What a great story! Love that you get a picture of the knitter. I visited their site and see several gift ideas...

    debwelch1@gmail.com

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  9. What a great story! Love that you get a picture of the knitter. I visited their site and see several gift ideas...

    debwelch1@gmail.com

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  10. Amazing to see this project grow and succeed!!

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  11. Amazing work the Collective project. Loved Jacinta's and baby picture!!!

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  12. I would LOVE to win the bag! The website is very impressive, too.

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  13. I love everything about this post! :)

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  14. I sincerely hope the looms don't stop. What a project! Thank you for posting.

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  15. I have always wanted a "reason" to buy from the Ricefield Collective. I supported their efforts, but got the pattern collection for myself. *Holiday Knits* I don't have to knit... you are a genius Laura! Thank you for the chance.

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  16. I love that bag and hope they do get those looms weaving away again.

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  17. I love the idea of the project and would very very interested in knowing if the bags went into production. It looks beautiful and functional!

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  18. I love the idea of the project and would very very interested in knowing if the bags went into production. It looks beautiful and functional!

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  19. What a great way to enrichen and revitalize women! Sure hope that the weaving skills get handed down and all the looms go into production. Too many hand crafts are being lost these days.

    Great giveaway and a wonderful link to an outstanding enterprise.

    Mahalo.

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  20. Interesting story. I hope that the weaving skills are passed down to the next generation. It would be sad to see an art such as weaving disappear.

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  21. This is a great article. I hope they keep these looms weaving and teach younger their craft.

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  22. What a great project! I hope they keep the looms going. It's a beautiful art that we wouldn't want to lose.

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  23. Sounds like a great project! The bag is pretty great-looking, too.

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  24. Wow what a wonderful project! It is a shame to see a skill like that die. Hopefully young ones will take it up. I think that bag is gorgeous.

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  25. Love the bag. What a great adventure for these women. Best of luck.

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  26. Hopefully the weaving will continue. These women are so talented!

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  27. What a great project to be connected with. I'm not a weaver but it makes me sad to think that it will be a lost art.

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  28. I just love it when we can put a face to the work. It makes it so much more personal. What an amazing project.

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  29. Its a beautiful bag! And its sad that the tradition is dying!

    Amber N- Ravelry id- gibbles83

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  30. Great foundation and I love the pictures!

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  31. This sounds like a great venture and a wonderful thing to support.

    misslillyknits on Ravelry

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  32. I think this is a great venture. Really like the way they put the knitter's photo with the hat, reminds us of the humanity in this. The bag is awesome! You'll be the envy of the Fibe Festival. Congrats on being in the Rhinebeck book!

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  33. I am also a backer with a lovely orange slouchy hat. The bag would be great to own.
    kemoser on Ravelry

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  34. What a grand idea. A lovely way to help poor women and keep hand crafts alive in the world. I love your cowl, hat and bag. What wonderful photos too. That loom looks like a very complicated tool!

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  35. Thank you for bringing this to my attention. I'm a frequent Kickstarter investor, but I somehow missed this one. I've just spent a lovely Sunday morning hour with my coffee and Ricefield in a beautiful part of the world.... Thanks, too, for the opportunity to own the wonderful bag.

    kaykaren on Ravelry

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  36. So many women in other countries are helpless and hopeless, and this makes me glad that these women are being taught a skill to enable them to have a better life. I love that a picture of the maker is included with each item. Gives it a much more personal touch.

    Zowmom on Ravelry

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  37. I recently received my hat from Ricefield & just LOVE it. The whole mission is just amazing

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  38. Inspiring! What a great way to acquire something beautiful, do something good and feel a connection that goes beyond the bag, all at the same time. Thanks, Laura!

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  39. I have been lucky enough to spend several weeks in the Philippines - it is an amazingly beautiful country with a crazy history. It is fabulous to see the Ricefield Collective working to keep people on their land - that is something I can definitely get behind.

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  40. It would be great to see the demand for woven products go up NOW, before the skills are lost!

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  41. Laura, I love the idea of the Ricefield Collective so much I backed it, too! I got my slouchy hat a couple of weeks ago and am so thrilled with it, it's so comfy and warm! And I love my little hand-sewn bag, too.

    I am so in favour of helping to support keeping people in their traditional lifestyles!

    liciniac on Ravelry

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  42. It has been a pleasure to be part of this Kickstarter effort. I love my hat and cowl! I think that the woven bag would be an absolute win for whomever gets it. Thanks for sharing about the Ricefield Collective.

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  43. Oh, I love this giveaway. It's been great watching this get going.

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  44. Thanks for spreading the word about this wonderful venture. Even if we don't win, we can back them and spread the word to all out fiber loving friends.

    That ensemble looks great on you!

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  45. What a fabulous opportunity to help fellow crafts become economically secure and independent- sure is nice to be able to help ourselves out too, shopping for hand knit gifts makes me feel a tad less guilty about not finishing my gift list by Christmas (the pictures really helps spread the message and make the mission hit home too) - Thank for the chance to win the lovely bag!!

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  46. What a fabulous opportunity to help fellow crafts become economically secure and independent- sure is nice to be able to help ourselves out too, shopping for hand knit gifts makes me feel a tad less guilty about not finishing my gift list by Christmas (the pictures really helps spread the message and make the mission hit home too) - Thank for the chance to win the lovely bag!!

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  47. It would be great to see the demand for woven products increase!

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  48. I discovered RC thanks to your tweet about it way back at the beginning of their kickstarter campaign. I love what they're doing already and hope they can return weaving to its former vibrancy! That bag is stunning!

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  49. Hi everyone. This is Meredith the director of Ricefield. Thanks so much for your support! We're working out the logistics right now to do a limited run of the tote bags so hopefully we can offer them for sale soon.

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  50. what fun!
    love your bad-ass picture!

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  51. Wonderful project. It's so satisfying to help other people in need.

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  52. Amazing! What a wonderful enterprise.

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  53. love my bright red cowl that Marieta knit for me! And the finger puppets? adorable. I can't wait to show them to my Granddaughter! She tried to knit while watching me when she was only 2!
    All my project bags are FULL! I need this tote!

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  54. I love Ricefield! I am in love with my new hat and what is being accomplished! What a cool bag!!

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  55. I wish demand for these products would increase!

    rav id: vstarborn

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  56. Ricefield is a wonderful investment to preserve fiber arts and provide the opportunity for financial growth. I love the bag!

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  57. What a terrific group - I am in awe of the energy and effort it takes to keep such a group going, and I'm grateful that people are supporting it. And I do love that bag!!

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  58. This is just such a fantastic idea. I hope much success for the venture. Love the bags, BTW!!

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  59. I too am a huge fan! Awesome write up!

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