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OUR PROCESS

The Piece & Co. process unites over 5,000 artisans and small businesses across 16 countries to create a global supply chain of unmatched quality and sustainability.

Together, the partner network has resources and best in class processes necessary to meet strict, international standards of quality and compliance at every level of the production process - from fair labor, equal treatment, wages and hours to oversight on healthy and safe working environments that positively impact local communities and the planet at large.

 
 
 

Our Vetting

All potential Piece & Co artisan partners undergo an extensive vetting process to ensure that they are able to comply with our standards for quality control and production, as well as social and environmental responsibility.

Our PRINCIPLES

All artisan partners must sign and adhere to Piece & Co's Principles of Social & Environmental Responsibility, including:

  • Business Integrity & Transparency
  • Management Systems
  • Women's Empowerment
  • Zero Tolerance on Child Labor
  • Fair Employment
  • Freedom of Association
  • Health & Safety Systems
  • Management of Subcontractors
  • Environmental Responsibility
  • Animal Welfare

Our PRODUCT

We source raw material for each partner to ensure quality and environmental standards.

All fabrics are tested for Restricted Substance List (RSL) to ensure compliance with international standards for chemical safety. 

 
 
 

SUSTAINABLE  FIBERS

Sustainable fibers are the basis of our supply chain.

 
 
 
 
 

SUSTAINABLE FIBER: ORGANIC COTTON

Organic cotton is grown using methods and materials that have a low impact on the environment. Organic cotton uses 90% less water than conventional cotton due to less irrigation. Organic cotton is grown without the use of toxic and persistent pesticides and synthetic fertilizers - toxins that are harmful for farmers and workers, consumers, and entire wildlife ecosystems. It is a key fiber for the Piece & Co supply chain.

 
 
 

SUSTAINABLE FIBER: ALPACA

The alpaca have a light environmental footprint. They tread softly on the ground due to the shape and size of their hooves, allowing them to distribute weight evenly so that they don't pack down the soil. Alpaca produce fleece that is even more warm than wool and is a natural, renewable, biodegradable and durable fiber. Our Peruvian alpaca roam free in the high mountains and are sheared once a year with great care to ensure a long, natural life. 

 

SUSTAINABLE FIBER: SILK

Silk is a natural fiber and has the strong sustainable feature of being a renewable resource. Silk is a protein fiber spun by a silk moth larvae, most commonly Bobyx Mori, to make its cocoon. Silk is biodegradable after its useful life, and can also be used to produce mulch, compost and soil.

 
 
 

ARTISAN PARTNERS

Female artisans are the backbone of their communities.

The artisan segment is one of the most underemployed segments in the world, with the unemployment rate at 40%, while also being some of the most talented people in the world. Through working with these talented men and women we are able to make beautiful fabrics with meaningful heritage that uplift their communities while doing no harm to the environment.

 
 
 
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HERITAGE  TECHNIQUES

Piece & Co brings together centuries old techniques and modern interpretations.

 
 

TECHNIQUE: APPLIQUE

Provenance  •  Mexico & India

Top-applied fabric ornamentation is created by layering pieces of fabric on top of each other. These layers are stitched together to create elaborate designs on the surface of the fabric. As such, appliqué is as much about color and vibrancy as it is about rich texture.

 

TECHNIQUE: BACK STRAP LOOM WEAVE

Provenance  • Guatemala

Backstraps are humble looms with roots in ancient civilizations. They consist of two sticks or bars between which the yarns are stretched. One bar is attached to a fixed object, such as a tree, and the strapped to the back of the weaver.

Backstrap looms are small, portable and inexpensive, making them ideal for developing communities.

Though modest, these looms have created some of history’s most beautiful and complex textiles.

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TECHNIQUE: BATIK

Provenance  •  Ghana

African batik is a method suited for the artistically inclined, a special wax resist dye technique dating back to over 2000 years. It is found in many cultures across various regions, and most likely spread through caravan routes over time. This particular method of batik employs the use of a foam stamp to create a visually stimulating motif whose minute imperfections only intensify its remarkable nature.

 

The attentive process begins with a foam block which is hand carved. The stamp is then brushed with hot wax, carefully pressed onto dyed fabric, dyed with tonal or contrasting dye and finally removed of the wax. The end product is a stunning with juxtaposition of positive and negative space.

 

TECHNIQUE: BLOCK PRINTING

Provenance  •  India

Block printing is one of the oldest and most intricate forms of printing, originating in the 3rd century. It requires immense attention to detail, since each wooden block is hand carved and placed to create elaborate designs that are truly one-of-a-kind. 

To achieve the printed design, the block is dipped in thickened dye, delicately placed on fabric, then pounded onto the fabric to transfer the dye. Each layer of color is added using a separate block, adding to the complexity of this technique. The end results are finished prints with ever-so slight differences that speak to their special character and unique beauty. 

 

TECHNIQUE: BROCADE

Provenance  •  Mexico, Guatemala & India

Elaborate, heavy, and ornate woven fabric with raised patterns that are emphasized by contrasting surfaces and colors. Brocade patterns are distinguished from other woven fabric due to the fact that the design appears on the face of the fabric, which is clearly distinguished from the back.

 

TECHNIQUE: COFFEE DYE

Provenance  •  Peru

Coffee dyeing is non-toxic and natural. The fabric is soaked in water and then wrung out so it is damp, and placed in a bath of coffee. The fabric steeps in the bath and is then set out to dry. The result is a one of a kind dyed fabric that has a natural and authentic look and feel. Our Peruvian artisan partners do all of the natural coffee dyeing for Piece & Co fabrics.

 

TECHNIQUE: CROCHET & KNIT

Provenance  •  Kenya & Peru

Crochet is the technique of creating fabric from yarn or thread using only one tool – the crochet hook.

Artisans start with a slip stitch, then wrap the yarn around the hook and pull a loop through the stitch. This process is repeated until a chain of a suitable length emerges, which can be worked in rows or in rounds.

Artisans can create different shapes, textures and weights of fabric by changing the type of yarn and style of crochet.

 

TECHNIQUE: DABU BLOCK PRINT

Provenance  •  India

This technique uses a mud (dabu) as a resisting agent, protecting areas of the fabric surface from dye penetration. Dabu is a combination of wheat flour, sawdust, tree gum, and lime and is printed on the fabric with carved wooden blocks. The mud print is then covered with sawdust and is dried in the sun. Once the mixture hardens, the fabric with the mud resist is submerged in a vat of natural indigo dye. The fabric lays in the sunlight to dry, and the mud and sawdust mixture is then scraped off and washed by hand. The result are stunning prints, with slight variations that make each piece uniquely beautiful. Traditional to the Jaipur region of India.

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TECHNIQUE: DIGITAL PRINT

Provenance  •  India

Digital textile printing is an ink jet based method of printing onto fabric.  One of the biggest advantages of direct to media is that it allows for a greater variety of artworks, and can achieve color and pattern layering. One of the major environmentally sustainable aspects of this technique is the reduced waste of water and ink. Digital printing can be a big economical and ecological factor in production. Our digital printing is produced by our artisan partners in India.

 

TECHNIQUE: DOBBY WEAVE

Provenance  •  India

Dobby looms, are equipped with harnesses, each of which can be individually programmed to create complex sequences by a mechanism called a dobby head. The dobby mechanism predetermines which harness is raised or lowered for each weft insertion. Our artisan partners in India are able to create a wide variety of stripes, motifs and patterned designs due to the multiple capabilities of the dobby loom.

 
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TECHNIQUE: EMBROIDERY

Provenance  •  Mexico & India

The timeless appeal of embroidery makes this method a continual favorite.  The hand work involved in this technique minimizes waste and maximizes consumption needs by engineering the artwork to placements and borders. It can be done in a variety of patterns and styles, and on a plain or patterned base quality. Because our embroidery is done by hand, it is a time intensive process well suited to trims and accessories.

 

TECHNIQUE: HAND PAINTING

Provenance  •  Zambia

This technique mixes traditional African art with contemporary designs, drawing inspiration from the stunning Zambian wildlife and surroundings. Each piece is drawn and painted by local Zambian men and women in a rich palette of hand-mixed colors.

Each individual design is hand-painted onto the fabric with a starch solution, and the paint is sun-dried. Fabrics are cooked in an oven to ensure that the textile is color-fast and washable. After cooking, each piece is washed and dried outside in the sun. The artisans then remove the starch to reveal the beautiful, colorful designs

 

 

TECHNIQUE: HAND LOOM

Provenance  • Mexico, Nepal, Guatemala, & India

Handwoven fabric is brought to life by using a hand-powered loom. Handloom artisans lead this meticulous process, which involves weaving the yarn together to create solid, striped, or patterned textiles. The handloom technique has deep roots in many cultures around the world, and often represents a country or region’s heritage through alluring colors, time-honored techniques, and rich symbolism.

 

TECHNIQUE: IKAT

Provenance  •  India

One of the oldest patterned textiles in the world, Ikat is a delicate and tedious weaving technique that has been passed down between artisans for centuries.

 

Unlike other production methods, warp threads are dyed before they are woven. The intricate process starts by drawing a pattern onto threads, and then tying the design off to create a resistance against the dyes. The unwoven threads are carefully dyed in sections to achieve the desired pattern. Double Ikat is when both the warp and weft threads are dying prior to weaving.  We have capabilities for both versions.

 

Once the threads are tied and dyed, they are then aligned on a loom and woven together to create the finished textile.  Due to its reversed procedure, Ikat is usually marked by a blurring of the finished design. Artisans with a high skill level can minimize the blurring and incorporate many different colors for complex and unique designs.

 

TECHNIQUE: JACQUARD

Provenance  •  India

Jacquard is a type of fabric with an intricately woven pattern. The pattern is not embroidered but woven directly into the material, creating fabric with a natural give yet great strength. The jacquard loom was invented in 1801 by Joseph Marie Jacquard. Piece & Co. fabrics and products that are produced using the jacquard technique are made by our artisan partners in India.

 

TECHNIQUE: KANTHA STITCH

Provenance  •  India

A steady hand and eye for artistry are hallmarks of kantha. Top-applied fabric ornamentation is created by layering pieces of fabric on top of each other. Fabrics are layered together and overstitched by hand to create a quilted look on the front and back of the fabric. Because this technique requires two layers of fabric it can be a reversible quality with unique artwork on both sides adding to the value and utility of the textile when used in garments or home furnishings

Traditionally, kantha stitch fabric is made of recycled saris, but can also be crafted using custom block-printed or screen-printed fabrics and then over-stitched with colored threads. 

 

TECHNIQUE: KENTE

Provenance  •  Ghana

Kente cloth is characterized by its vibrant colors, banded geometric shapes, and bold designs.

Kente is a form of traditional ceremonial weaving that was used to convey ideas, so each color has its own meaning. Kente cloth was once considered to be a royal and sacred cloth that could only be worn during important events, but today it its use is more widespread. The cloth is hand-woven on a horizontal loom into narrow strips that are either used as trims or sewn together to create the bright multi-colored patterns.

 

 

TECHNIQUE: POWER LOOM & WEAVE

Provenance  •  India

The power loom resembles the traditional hand loom, but includes several accessory devices to make the weaving process more efficient.

Most of the power looms are semi-machine operated, and rely heavily on skilled weavers to execute the designs. The complexity of each weave depends on the number of loom harnesses available and the flexibility with which they can be manipulated.

Power looms speed up the weaving process so that the group has more capacity to take on larger orders, which creates more employment opportunities for the artisans.

 

TECHNIQUE: SCREEN PRINT

Provenance  •  India

Screen printing is a technique whereby a mesh is used to transfer ink by a blocking stencil. The Screens are hand printed. A blade or squeegee is moved across the screen to fill the open mesh apertures with ink.

This causes the ink to wet the substrate and be pulled out of the mesh apertures as the screen springs back after the blade has passed. One color is printed at a time, so several screens can be used to produce a multicolored image or design. Our artisan partners in India produce all of the Piece & Co fabric and product that are screen printed.

 

TECHNIQUE: SHIBORI

Provenance  •  Ghana & India

Shibori designs are extremely elaborate and require artisanal skill. Each piece of fabric is carefully manipulated by hand through a variety of different techniques, including stitching, folding and clamping, and pole wrapping. Fabrics are then submerged in a vat of dye and removed when the desired shade is achieved. This process is repeated for every color in the artwork. 

 
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TECHNIQUE: SUN DYE

Provenance  •  South Africa

The process of this artisan group is very unique: they use plants and dyes that react to the sun, the local flora. The artisans lay out the fabric and materials, place the plants on top to form the pattern and let the sun finish the transfer of pattern.

 All done by hand; from the collection of leaves, seedpods and ferns, to the laying out of the fabric on the grass and the designing – there is a distinct lack of the machinery usually associated with fabric production, and every single piece is a unique creation.