Moringa What

 

WHAT
Ingredient-focused 100% natural skincare with “the underlying focus on feeding your skin what you can feed yourself.” Their two product range includes a cold pressed moringa oil and a gentle exfoliant of besan (Bengal gram), turmeric and moringa powder, three pantry ingredients rooted in South Asian beauty traditions. 

Moringa What is a wellness brand with the aim of creating social impact, and committed to sustainability, ensuring even their packaging is as eco-friendly as possible. 

WHO
Founder Ekom Mamik and a collective of three small holder farmers and their families. “Also, the invisible hands of my family, including my grandmother (nani), that helped with packaging and shipping in the early stages and continue to help on an adhoc basis!”

WHEN
In October 2015, Moringa What launched with their first product the 100% Moringa cold-pressed oil for skin & hair. 


WHERE
Based in the foothills of Darjeeling where they work with local farmers. They also work with farmers in South India. 

WHY
The idea was conceptualised in mid 2014 while Ekom worked at a model sustainable village of HIV affected children and grandparents in remote Kenya, where Moringa leaves were being processed for use by locals to boost their immune system. Ekom became passionate about the Moringa Oleifera, a drought-resistant tree that she grew up with, without the know-how of its nutritional impact and varied uses. 


Moringa What was launched as a response to both having difficulty sourcing “truly clean ingredients in the current state of chemically laden skincare” and to create “opportunities for sustained growth for low income communities as opposed to charity that is short lived”. 

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Safomasi

 

WHAT
Safomasi make unique illustrated home textiles and accessories, handcrafted in India, that tell the story of their travels all over the world. They design playful prints that are then turned into a range of home and lifestyle products including cushions, quilts, table linens, bags and pouches, clothing and fabric by the metre.

WHO
Artist-illustrator Sarah Fotheringham and Maninder Singh, a British-Indian couple living in Delhi.

WHEN
December 2012

WHERE
Safomasi’s studio is in Chirag Delhi in New Delhi. “We work with a screen printing workshop that hand screen prints our fabrics, which are then stitched and finished in house by a small team of tailors.” Studio visits can be made by appointment.

WHY
“A love for colour, pattern, interiors and travel.”

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INAI

 
 

WHAT
INAI is a leather goods label handmade by skilled Indian artisans in their workshop in Madras, India. “Our designs are meant to serve a specific purpose — a bag for everyday living, new adventures, emotional milestones and so much more.” INAI handcrafts minimal leather pieces ranging from small goods such as credit card cases, wallets  and clutches to bags, backpacks and totes. They offer personalisation on some of their smaller products that make for thoughtful gifts.

WHO
INAI was founded by its creative head, Sruti Ashok. Their team consists of between 8-10 talented leather artisans, each of whom bring years of experience and their own skills and knowledge to the table.

WHEN
December 2017

WHERE
Based out of Madras, INAI have their own workshop where their team of artisans work in unison. Everything from the sourcing of leathers to the metal trimming and cotton lining are done in house. INAI crafts in small quantities often upcycling stock and leftover leather (from factory production cycles) which leads to minimum wastage. Each piece is handcrafted and final quality checks are taken care of by members of their team.

WHY
“After working as a graphic designer for a few years in Mumbai, I had always wanted to start a brand of my own, which lead to me starting INAI. My father being in the leather industry definitely influenced and motivated me to start a brand that crafts pure leather pieces promoting the skills of talented artisans in India, whilst encouraging mindful purchasing.”

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INAI.

 
 

Ayca

 

 WHAT
Ayca is a natural, paraben-free skincare, bath and wellness brand. Their products have been recreated to reflects co-founder Mallyeka’s great-grandmother’s recipes for products she began making nearly three decades ago using natural ingredients and pure essential oils. “Our commitment is to preserve our ancient crafts and offer a holistic approach to refresh, replenish and revitalize.”

WHO
Himani Singh and Mallyeka Watsa, and of course, Mallyeka’s great-grandmother.

WHEN
October 2015

WHERE
We are based in New Delhi and Mumbai. Ayca’s products are made in Delhi.  

WHY
“We have always used the body butter made using Mallyeka's great-grandmother’s recipe. After having used the complete range of products over many years, we decided to start Ayca because we loved them so much and felt that they ought to be shared with the world.”

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Kassa

 

WHAT
Kassa meaning ‘house of two’ is a multi disciplinary brand that inhabits a space between art and design. Their products include leather accessories, apparel, photography, furniture and lighting, sculptures, stationery and jewellery. Believers in artistic interpretation, each of their handcrafted piece is a simple story told with a twist. 

WHO
Husband and wife contemporary artist duo Aarushi Kumar and Arpan Patel. Aarushi has a background in graphic art and Arpan in art and sculpture. 

WHEN
2013

WHERE
Kassa is based in Jaipur. Products are handcrafted in house at their studio. 

WHY
“Our work is about the imaginative use of materials intrinsic to India’s traditional craft culture, pushing the boundaries of techniques and sensorial experiences.”

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Aureole

 

WHAT
Aureole is a young clothing label from Mumbai, India making clothes for everyday living. They work with skilled weavers and craftsmen from across the country to design their own textiles in khadi and silks. Aureole’s clothing is kind to the environment and rooted in the ideologies of slow living.

WHO
Aureole was founded by Kunal Virwani and Aditi Mohoni. Kunal worked in garment exports in Dhaka until he decided to move back to explore an environmentally conscious method of garment production. After practicing law for 6 years, Aditi wrapped up her practice as a divorce lawyer to build a brand that was both mindful to the environment along with being affordable. The backbone of Aureole “are our tailors, craftsmen and weavers who painstakingly bring to life it's vision.”

WHEN
14th February, 2017

WHERE
Aureole work out of a small studio in Kala Ghoda, Mumbai. Garments are made at their studio ensuring strict quality control. 

WHY 
“In 2016, when the Bombay High Court was on vacation, we took a trip to Gujarat where we came across the most breathtaking textiles being woven by skilled men and woven in front of our eyes. We were overwhelmed on seeing the beauty and patience with which these talented folk created some of the finest textiles we had ever laid eyes on. It was the exploration of these crafts that techniques that gave form to Aureole - a label that believes in retuning to a pace of life that celebrates slowness, the slowness of the breath that gives life, this slow revolving earth, slow unfolding of moments and the hands that create out of slow harmonic movements.”

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Anomaly

 
 

WHAT
Founded in 2015, ANOMALY is a contemporary clothing brand specialising in minimal essentials that are refined, elegant and versatile. The brand embodies a way of life for the modern woman who prefers understated elegance to superfluous ornamentation — the understated sophistication of simple lines. Their product offerings include women's workwear and everyday separates, men's shirts, accessories and homewares. A Limited Edition collection includes a sustainable range of women's separates crafted in handwoven Indian textiles.

WHO
ANOMALY was founded by Medha Khosla, its creative director who has over 10 years of design and technical design experience in the New York fashion industry. Their creative team includes an assistant, interns, production staff and a team of karigars, and masterji, all of who work in house.

WHEN
December 2015

WHY 
A strong desire to dress urban, professional women in well-constructed, good quality, timeless clothing crafted in natural textiles from India.

WHERE
All our products are produced in an in-house workshop in Delhi. ANOMALY’s studio and store can be found in Shahpur Jat.

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Claymen

 

WHAT
Functional and dysfunctional ceramic objects. In founder Aman’s words, “These objects add aesthetic by taking it away. They simply are what they are: a celebration of a style that lives at peace with its own little imperfections. Some are functional, hand made and built to be used. The sculptures emerge from a careful observation of the common man and his dilemmas. They are peaceful, contemplative and quiet.”

WHO
Creative director Aman Khanna is also a graphic designer with a small team that includes Bhoop Singh (maker), Akshay Singh (product designer), Gyan (product designer, maker), Shankar Singh (firing help and family cook), Mukesh (packing and studio help) and Stacy (sales and studio gardener).

WHEN
March 2016

WHERE
Everything is made in house in their Chattarpur studio.

WHY
“Information anxiety.”


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Andamen

 

WHAT
“Andamen is a contemporary men’s fashion brand where Indian-ness is celebrated. Sometimes quietly. Sometimes with a little jig.” Andamen makes men’s shirts and accessories. Their focus is on luxury, not as a price point but as an experience. Inspired by the Andaman Islands, and symbolic of today’s global Indian, Andamen represents the unique duality of being international yet deeply connected to our Indian roots. 

WHO
Co-founders Siddharth and Satvika Suri. Siddharth’s passion is product, design and strategy while Satvika leads brand, marketing and operations.

WHEN
Andamen launched in January 2016. 

WHERE
HQ in Gurgaon with production in Nepani, on the outskirts of Bangalore.

WHY
Andamen was born out of co-founder Siddharth’s belief that the fashion industry, especially the luxury segment was ready for disruption. “I am very passionate about India and about great quality and craftsmanship. Before I went to pursue my MBA in 2013, I had dreamt about launching a menswear fashion brand that leverages India’s rich heritage and craftsmanship.” Siddharth sees a huge opportunity in India which boasts one of the world’s fastest growing fashion markets, yet it remains difficult to find brands offering exceptional quality at affordable prices. “Our Indian heritage, storytelling based concept and design philosophy also make Andamen a truly unique brand in the men’s fashion space.”

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Bare Necessities

 
 
 

WHAT
Zero waste personal and home care products made from organic, local and fair trade natural ingredients handmade fresh in small batches without chemical preservatives. Lifestyle accessories that also support the zero waste lifestyle such as stainless steel straws and bamboo toothbrushes.

WHO
Founded by Sahar Mansoor and supported by a small team.

WHEN 
2016

WHERE
Bangalore, India. “Aseya Banu makes all our products - she is training more local women under her to make these products. Lip balm is Sahar's favourite, she still makes every batch of lip balm that leaves our Bare workshop.”

WHY
Overwhelmed with India’s trash problem, Sahar decided she wanted to stop being part of it and began to live a zero-waste lifestyle. Bare Necessities is a by-product of her own personal zero waste values. “In my zero-waste journey, I realized that it was impossible to find personal care and home care products that didn’t contain harmful chemicals and weren’t packaged in plastic. In response to this problem, I wanted to create a company that mirrored the values of zero waste, ethical consumption and sustainability. I wanted to make it easy for other people looking to consume more mindfully and to encourage others to produce less waste. At Bare Necessities, It’s not just about selling product, but about encouraging an earth friendly lifestyle.”

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Rooted Objects

 

WHAT
An online store supporting makers with a practise rooted in responsibility towards people and the planet. Rooted Objects stocks a curated collection of products from local home, lifestyle, fashion and beauty brands. The site supports designers improving standards in the design industry by helping to tell their stories, thereby allowing people to better understand their origin, making and the people behind them.  Zaga’s graphic handwoven rugs and cushions, Arture’s polished cork accessories and, North Mist’s men’s tees from organic cotton, Satliva’s cold pressed hemp oil products, Ayca and Ilana Organics natural skincare and Kerehaklu’s repurposed wooden home goods are amongst the products you’ll find in their virtual shelves.

WHO
Founded by Kinnari and Kiran, who have backgrounds in digital design and technology respectively. After working for many years in the corporate world in the UK and US, the husband-wife duo moved back to India to start their own business.

WHEN
August 2018

WHERE
Bangalore

WHY
“Rooted Objects was created in response to the evolving nature of contemporary style into something that is too consumptive, fleeting and not rooted in anything thoughtful or personal.” A passion project for its founders to support “brands that invest in research and thinking in contexts of use, materials, crafts, techniques and communities to create objects that are important, relevant and beautiful.” Kinnari and Kiran look for “quality, thought and longevity in the labels that we carry” and believe that the digital boutique is a unique and inclusive medium to engage visitors “of all types with varying contexts, backgrounds and beliefs so we invest a lot of our time into it engaging for the shopper and the reader.”

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PA.NI Swimwear

 
 

WHAT
PA.NI Swimwear is a high end body-positive swimwear line made specifically for Indian women's bodies. Their swimsuits are made from Econyl, a fabric upcycled from nylon fishing nets and other plastic waste found in the ocean. The products also feature accessories handmade by artisans in an effort to support the cottage industry. 

WHO
A small team led by founder Leila Veerasamy, a French-Mauritian expat who was brought up mainly in Mauritius. 

WHEN
The brand recently launched on September 1st, 2018 but was founded two years ago. 

WHERE
With fabric made in Italy, production in Sri Lanka and artisanal embellishments from both a village in Uttar Pradesh and Bombay, where the team is based, PA.NI is a global effort.

WHY
“I created PA.NI Swimwear when I realized there weren't many swimwear options for women in India: and more importantly, how few of them catered to women with different body types (or globally, women of colour). This lack of diversity in the market made me realize that we needed a swimwear brand that actually made women feel good in their skin and comfortable in their attire: which is why we pay close attention to leg cuts, bust supports and adjustable necklines in order to create the perfect fit. Prior to designing our first collection, we extensively studied the Indian market and surveyed 100+  women in Mumbai on their relationship with their bodies and swimwear.” The company maintains both social and environmental goals. “Our brand is based on 3 impact pillars: body-positivity, sustainability and artisan development.”

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PA.NI Swimwear.

 
 

Earth Loaf

 
 

WHAT
Single origin South Indian dark chocolate made in small batches with a terroir-centric approach to reflect the wealth and diversity of the subcontinent. Besides a range of regional single origin bars from various cacao producing states, their gourmet products feature indigenous and locally grown ingredients in unusual combinations.

WHO
Founder, director and executive chef David Belo.

WHEN
May 2012

WHERE
Earth Loaf’s chocolate is made in their workshop in Mysore, Karnataka.

WHY
“A dream of being an artisanal food producer, the search for tropical pastures and the discovery of cacao in India.” David left the world of mixology in London to retrain as an artisan bread baker before moving to Mysore in 2011 where he discovered local cacao, began experimenting and set up India’s first small batch bean-to-bar chocolate house, Earth Loaf.

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