Why Far and Wide Collective?

Hedvig Alexander and Jemima Montagu with silk weaver Saleh Mohammad, Kabul, Afghanistan.

The idea of creating an online sales platform, potentially for thousands (maybe even millions) of talented artisans that Western retail largely excludes, came to me over more than a decade in Afghanistan. There I saw firsthand the incredible achievements of Afghan craftspeople. All they needed was an opportunity. After that their sheer talent would take over, changing lives for the better over an astonishingly short time.

Craft traditions are strong in emerging economies: craft-making does not require literacy and is often performed by women. Lately there has been dramatic growth in demand for authentic and handmade products in North America and Europe. Why not match this supply with this demand? After all, it was clear to me that a marketplace giving access to a new wave of artisan producers would bring economic growth and prosperity to communities otherwise left out of the global economy for far too long.

I need your help in this endeavor. This is my invitation to join Far and Wide Collective on a journey to visit the smithies, workshops, bazaars and tanneries of Samarkand, Mazar-i-Sharif and Peshawar – of Murshidabad, Colombo and Kasigau – to hear the stories of artisans in these wonderful, faraway places. They have been life-changing for me. Now their beautiful products can enliven your home or wardrobe. Every purchase you make supports an individual artisan or helps a small crafts business to grow.

There is always shopping to be done – even in the most unexpected places!

Hedvig Alexander with Mohammad Ullah Yahyapoor in his workshop,
Kabul, Afghanistan.

Hedvig Alexander with second year jewelry and gem cutting student Stoorai Stanizai, Kabul, Afghanistan.


Hedvig Christine Alexander
Hedvig Christine Alexander

Author



5 Responses

Robert
Robert

September 15, 2013

Am sharing this on my wall and the basket pages. Word needs to get out. Thanks Hedvig!!

Shuhrat Negmatov
Shuhrat Negmatov

May 23, 2013

Hello Hedvig, Excellent Job!

Homira Nassery
Homira Nassery

May 23, 2013

Way to go Hedvig! thanks for not forgetting Afg after all these years. I will be a loyal customer. xxxh

Shirine Pont
Shirine Pont

May 23, 2013

Dear Hedvig,
I love how the idea of Far & Wide came about through the many initiatives and projects you had in Afghanistan. As always, you pulled it all together with amazing talent and creativity to create something new – empowering Afghan artisans; and making it possible for us to access beautiful and elegant pieces without leaving our arm chairs! Heartfelt congratulations to you and Jemima! This is a fabulous and wonderful thing!
Shirine

Rajula Atherton
Rajula Atherton

May 14, 2013

Dear Hedvig,

Congratulations on starting this enterprise . It is a great idea and I will pass this information on to my friends.
Best wishes to you and the talented artisans.

Leave a comment