What is in the heart of our fashion? What makes us different? Where else can I start but from the very beginning, over 90 years ago with my grandfather, Alex, an orphan who learned to weave rattan furniture at an early age. He wove a family history of persistence, artisanship, and creativity. As his business grew, he helped many weavers like himself make a living.
My father and mother have continued on his legacy of working with artisans and weavers. My father, Toni, is still in the handwoven furniture business, now more than 70 years from the time of my grandfather. My mother, Veronica, established Larone handbags in 1984. They have contributed greatly to the promotion of our local handicrafts in the global market and to the livelihood and progress of many artisan families.
I am the third generation working with weavers and artisans. I completed a fashion manufacturing course at FIDM in Los Angeles, California and have worked in a variety of companies to get a hands-on experience of the fashion industry on all levels of the retail supply chain and distribution both locally and abroad.
Many times, our weavers and artisans have told me that they pray for our good business so that they, in turn, will have a steady livelihood. That is how your purchase is an answered prayer. That's the heart of our fashion - helping to clothe, feed and educate another generation of weavers, artisans, and their children.
- Jennifer Lo
I was born and grew up in the Philippines but have been living as part of its diaspora for more than 20 years in London, Singapore, and New York. My professional background is in climate change and development, specifically working with governments to facilitate policies that actualize the potential of the private sector to mitigate climate change. Most recently, I served as part of the Philippine delegation to climate change negotiations at the United Nations.
Many search their whole lives for something meaningful to do with their time. With Larone Artisans, I have found that mix of global and grassroots, meaningful but fun(!) kind of work that you only find once in a blue moon.
I can't decide what it is about Larone I am most enthused over -- from our beautiful artisanal creations to our contribution to the slow fashion movement by promoting the use of local, natural materials. The handmade process of Larone, our work towards preserving traditional methods of weaving, our direct, positive impact on the lives of artisans -- all these make getting up in the morning filled with purpose. We have only begun our journey, but we have already met so many supportive, generous women - clients, bloggers and weavers alike.
If, when a client receives her Larone bag, she feels that she owns something unique and special, whether its for the bag's aesthetics or what it stands for, I feel that our work is done!
- Leticia Labre