Behind the Labels – Bohemian Diesel Interview by Sabrina Diesel
Who is behind The Native Market and where do you call home?
Laura, the founder, a digital strategist and social entrepreneur from Colombia passionate about marketing and helping out vulnerable communities in her home country. Home: Barranquilla, Colombia.
Tell us about The Native Market and the Latin American artisans you work with!
The Native Market is a place where you can find unique, autochthonous handmade products representing the cultures of Colombia and other Latin American countries. Artisans are the indigenous women of a tribe in the northern region of Colombia: La Guajira, called the Wayuu Tribe.
We practice fair trade by paying the artisans fair prices and working very closely with the women by empowering them through a program and workshops that teaches them to be independent and business driven through their handcrafting talent in order to feed their families. Most of them only speak their indigenous language (Wayunaki) and our mission is to connect them with the world by creating a marketplace where we can show their products and ensure they receive a fair compensation for each.
What is special about the designs you sell?
The Wayuu mochila bag is the greatest expression of the Wayuu tribe weaving art, its vivid colors and geometrical shapes symbolize the spirituality and mythology of this ethnic group, all of the designs are inspired by the artisans.
What kind of women wears your designs?
Bohemian, free spirited with a gypsy soul, caring for the people around them in search for a responsible and ethical fashion product.
Where and when do you feel most inspired?
Sierra Nevada of Santa Marta, Colombia
What’s your favorite part in your job?
Being able to work closely with vulnerable communities, hear their concerns and empower them creating long term fair trade partnerships.
In what do you believe?
“no one ever has become poor by giving. “
What does “being free” mean to you?
having inner peace, freed from material and external things
The mantras you live by.
There is always something to be thankful for.
What are your future plans for The Native Market? Do you have a dream project?
Partner with many artisans around the world especially in Latin America who need a voice and a place to show their work.