Fair Trade

grey knit fingerless mittens fair trade

Gloves are synonymous with British Autumn and Winter. There is something cosy about pulling on your favourite gloves. What made us fall a little in love with the gorgeous Aura Que gloves we stock stock at Home of Juniper is the fact that – as well as being stylish and cosy – they are also Fair Trade. We managed to catch designer and business owner Laura, and ask her some questions about her wonderful brand.

Hi Laura, can you tell us a little bit about yourself and how you got into designing knitwear?
My background is pattern cutting for leather work from my product design degree from London College of Fashion. I wanted to work directly with producer groups, hands on in workshops so made contact with the Nepal Fair Trade Group and been working with many different groups since then. My knitwear collection was developed from 2015 with a group of women who take the work home to work around their family commitments.

How long has Aura Que been going? And what makes it unique?
I have been working with many of the producers in Kathmandu since 2008, spending a lot of time in Kathmandu developing samples and improving leather making skills especially with the leather workshop I work with at NLT handicraft unit.

black merino fingerless mittens holding conkers

Black Merino Fingerless Mittens. Fair Trade

How closely do you work with the makers? Have you been able to travel to some amazing places to meet them?
Ive worked in Nepal for over ten years now, and spent half the year in Nepal in the early days to work on quality control, skills training etc with my producers. All the producers I work with are based around the Kathmandu Valley which I madly cycle around when I am visiting. I love the making process and working directly with the producers I have got to know over the years in Nepal, so now I visit for one month a year to work on new designs, and catch up with my producers and their families.

All your products are Fair Trade, why is this important to you?
It is important for me to work directly with the people making my products and designs, which I think naturally comes with a sense of responsibility to pay fair wages, use handmade techniques and materials that employ people through the processes, and aiming to help them provide for their families.

Do you have a favourite design? is this a design of mine?
I love the classic lines of my MIRA tote, but love my BATA rucksack when on my bike! I love it when the seasons change and my Jana Slipper socks come out for the winter season around the house. I love the dip dye mohair range I do, and love the new mint/grey colour way.

bone china mug with cream and held in hands wearing mohair mittens

Bone China Mug with Cream and Mohair Mitten

What is next for Aura Que?
Im launching a collaboration collection with textile designer Kaffe Fassett, working with his beautiful textile designs and a new fair trade producer in Vietnam to be launched Spring 18.

I don’t know about you, but I am very much looking forward to seeing the new products launched in 2018! I have just started re-wearing the Aura Que gloves I purchased last year. They still look like new and they are so warm! A lovely way to end & celebrate Fair Trade Month.

Remember to use fair17 at the check-out on Home of Juniper for 17% off until the end of Oct 2017 – Perfect time to get your new gloves!

(T&Cs apply – see website for more details- or message us.)


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