The Weave Co. crafts contemporary products for you and your home, from ethnic textiles and traditional fabrics from around the world. Much of their work involves social enterprises, as they believe the products are not only a way for the customers to bring textile art into their lives, but to also do some good while doing so.
We had a chat with Azizul, Founder of The Weave Co.
as he shares his inspiration on the setup
The Weave Co. started off as one of those lightbulbs ideas that are off in your head. I was on a vacation in Sri Lanka and chanced upon a showroom (which turned out to be more like a show-shophouse) filled with the most wondrous assortment of colours, all created by the craftspeople based there.
They had used fabric, in traditional colour ways and woven using traditional methods, to make dozens of things including the fabric cover notebooks that we consider to be our flagship products. The proverbial lightbulb went off on my head and here we are today, just over a year after we sold our first notebook.
My brother and I have worked together to tweak our business bit by bit into the form we know it to be today. The permanent two behind the scenes are my brother, Amirul, and I. Amirul’s a business student in NTU and the curator of our Instagram and the creator of all the visual collateral. I’m a lawyer by training and profession, and sort of try to do everything else. We’re lucky to be supported by many in small but very impactful ways.
There are three things that we believe makes The Weave Co. special
First, we’ve chosen to focus on textile art, which is somewhat of a forgotten child. The crafts movement has tended to focus on traditionally ‘expensive’ materials like leather, semi-precious metals, and semi-precious stones. These are more commonly associated with luxury and handicraft and perhaps unfairly so. Textile art may be a soft art but certainly no less of an art in itself.
Second, we’d like to think that we play somewhat of a role in educating. When we pick the textiles we work with, we don’t only look at it from an aesthetic perspective, because we also want to introduce into the market fabrics that have received scant attention, and by doing so hopefully further the understanding or at least appreciation of the textile heritage and how it has developed around the world.
Third, a large part of our work involves social enterprises around the world, and to a smaller extent, home businesses. We want to produce ethically as far as possible, and we’d also like to extend our support to other businesses like ourselves!
We’re actually quite proud of the extent of our partnerships with social enterprises – for those product lines that involve these enterprises, a minimum of 40% of the retail price goes straight to the beneficiary organization. We encourage and promote the involvement of all our partners, including distributing their advertising collateral and afford them no risk at all because we pay them for their labour and products upfront.
We don’t believe in conducting one-time charity drives or playing up this social aspect too much because it should be woven nicely and neatly into how the business works. It’s a combination of all these things that we feel makes The Weave Co. a little different and a little special to us. We try to work on these and make it better constantly.
We’ve kicked off a little project with a social enterprise
Based here in Singapore, called Alice in DOT’s World, the core mission is to train and employ underprivileged women in India – an at-risk group from social ills we are sheltered against here in Singapore, such as dowry killings.
Locally, Alice in DOT’s world partners with Daughters of Tomorrow to provide employment to women who are underprivileged, low-income or come from from troubled family circumstances with an eye to enable these women to earn an income, regain self-confidence and eventually attain a productive role within the economy. First looks of what we’re up to will be out mid-March!
I’ve always had a thing for beautiful things
We know it’s a little odd for us to be in this line. Most of the guys who end up walking the makers’ route end up crafting and creating things that are cool, sleek, or grungy – but we sort of strayed from this look.
I’ve always had a thing for beautiful things, and Amirul has always had a knack for making things look beautiful. Textile art is the sort of happy medium we found in between. It offered a plethora of beautiful objects and processes, and remains a source of much delight in terms of finding newer and better ways to present it.
We’re very fond of stories ourselves (that explains our lengthy answers here!) and this is definitely another aspect of textile art that continues to amaze and inspire us. There’s so much to be told, so much subtlety unlike products which are self-evident – like precious metals and stones.
You can find our products at a number of physical stores
Dulcetfig (a charming mixed goods store stocked with chic ladies apparel brands and three wonderful cats), Goods of Desire (Hong Kong based lifestyle goods brand filled with lovely knick knacks to make your house your home), Penny University (one stop shop for good coffee, brunch, and a chill-out atmosphere), and Seriously Ice Cream (artisan ice cream with flavours for both all tastebuds from classic to adventurous). We’re always looking for more places to stock at so that you’ll be able to have a feel of our wares more easily.
All products & designs are also available
@ The Weave Co. online