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ONSITE CARIBBEAN at CGCS-08 Barbados
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Start Date: October 2, 2008, 09:00
End Date: October 5, 2008, 17:00
Event Contact: Philip Kelly
For More Information: http://www.tfocanada.ca/events.php?yearID=2008&monthID=10&dayID=2&e=223


Description

ONSITE CARIBBEAN
As one of the next design frontiers, the developing world is producing goods that fuse quality with creativity beyond just low cost.  Working as a TFO Canada associate, design expert Patty Johnson of North South Project, is exploring these frontiers through our ONSITE CARIBBEAN Project. Collaborating with eight Caribbean companies from four islands to design new craft product collections, this ongoing activity draws together artisan skills and contemporary design to create product collections that reveal how local and regional efforts can bring balance to the often lopsided free flows of globalisation.
 
ONSITE CARIBBEAN products will be exhibited at the Caribbean Gift and Crafts Show (CGCS-08) in Barbados, October 2 to 5, 2008 and we invite Canadian buyers to come to the show and view their exciting and innovative new products as well as take in the hundreds of other exhibitors displaying unique products from the Caribbean. We will be inviting 6 to 10 buyers to join a trade mission to this event so if you are interested please write to TFO Project Manager Philip Kelly at philip.kelly@tfocanada.ca

(In addition, prior to CGCS-08 an advance incoming mission to Canada for ONSITE CARIBBEAN is tentatively planned and we will be contacting all our gift and craft buyers directly to advise them further and invite them to meet with the companies here.)
 
 
The companies participating in this Product Development Project are located on four islands: Barbados, Dominica, Haiti and Jamaica. The enterprises and groups were at varying stages of export readiness; some had products ready for export, and, others needed more intensive product development. With this mind, the work plans for the three product creation trips incorporated the needs of both export ready companies and assistance for groups in new product development.
 
In all cases, except for Femmes en Democratie in Haiti, the companies have developed new products or refined old products for the collection. Pending confirmation from Femmes en Democratie, the Tobacco Vessels will be shown as part of the final Onsite Caribbean collection.
 
1 Big Daddy Craft and Leather, Jamaica
Contact: Dulston Baldwin
Lot 115 Codac Street, Flankers Dist PA, Montego Bay, Jamaica
Tel +1-876-940-5853
balandocdesign@yahoo.com
 
Dulston Baldwin has focussed his company, Big Daddy Craft and Leather on hand made handbags, attaches and sandals. All the product lines are designed by Baldwin who started as an apprentice leather tanner in Jamaica. From this beginning he has built a small factory in his house where all the sewing and assembly is done. He continues to train leatherworkers that then supply him with the high quality leather that he demands. The company is well organized and archives the information on each product including a master prototype so that they can consistently reproduce the lines. Baldwin has a good understanding of the criteria for quality and strives to continually create new product lines. This admirable attention to detail has resulted in the company receiving and subsequently meeting volume orders on an ongoing basis.
 
Materials: Leather, metal hardware, some plant materials
 
2 Caribbean Creative, Dominica
Contact: Andy Manley
Shawford, Roseau, Dominica
Tel +1-767-245-2995
www.caribbeancreative.com
 
Caribbean Creative is a consultancy that works with architects and interior designers on building projects in the Caribbean. Andy Manley is the principle director and in addition to designing lines of furniture and lighting, he works with other groups in Dominica and across the region to develop home accessory products that incorporate indigenous materials and local cultural qualities.
 
Manley’s work shows a savvy knowledge of international markets and his contemporary take on furniture and lighting products using bamboo is refreshing. It is this work that should be tapped for the product development and export project.
 
“Unique handcrafted home accessories and giftware from sustainable resources with contemporary style and fine finishing.”
 
Materials: wood, bamboo, metal, glass
 
3 Dominica Export Agency (DEXIA)/Kalinago Project, Dominica
Contact: Mara Abraham
PO Box 173, Bayfront, Roseau, Dominica
Tel +1-767-448-2780
www.dexia.dm
 
DEXIA works closely with the Carib Community in Dominica through the Kalinago Project. This community produces very high quality woven baskets, carryalls and picnic containers using sustainable grasses and vines and that are based on indigenous techniques and processes. The range of sizes and types of products is good and shows potential for developing new woven products for the demanding North American market. The group has worked with designers before and are enthusiastic about future initiatives of this kind.
 
In addition to weaving work, the group also produces pottery from locally made clay bodies. This work is quite rudimentary but offers good potential for developing lines of clay cookware and serving ware, as well as, decorative, large scale vases.
 
“The creation of the direct descendants of the Carib people who once populated the Island of Dominica. These baskets are hand-woven using the same natural techniques and plant material as the ancient Caribs.”
 
Materials: woven grasses and vines, clay
 
4 Femmes en Democratie, Haiti
Contact: Danielle Saint-Lot
Rue Carlstroem #10, Port-au-Prince, Haiti
Tel +1-509-510=2707
www.fed.org.ht
 
"Femmes en Democratie" is an organization that is part of the international network Vital Voices. This chapter is governed by six Haiti women leaders who through weekly meetings reach out to over one hundred emerging women leaders throughout Haiti. They are involved in a range of activities including: a U.S. government funded media training program for women journalists, a civic education program supported by USAID, and a Caribbean-wide program aimed at integrating Haitian women into Caribbean society.
 
Danielle Saint-Lot, the Vital Voices Haiti Chapter Coordinator, in addition to the above activities, oversees “Femmes en Production” which is an initiative that assists rural women artisans in product development, export assistance as well as subsidized representation in a craft trade show each year in Haiti.
 
“Femmes en Democratie” has developed progressive design programs with external partners like Aid to Artisans and One Project, One Village that has resulted in the creation and export of some unique and contemporary product lines. The producers use materials like tobacco leaves in innovative ways to create new giftware and table top collections. The One Project, One Village Tobacco Leaf Vases and Containers were awarded the Best Product in this year’s CGCS competition.
 
Most of the product lines are of the highest quality and representative of Haitian culture and history but in a new way. Sequin work, cow horn, bone, silver and embroidery are all used with great competency and skill and show potential for further development to create stand out collections for export.
 
Materials: sequin work, tobacco plants, cow horn, bone, silver, textiles both printed and embroidered.
 
5 Luna Design, Barbados
Contact: Emesto and Gloria Neira
Shop No. 2 Tyroli Cottage, Heritage Village, Condrington Hill, St. Michael, Barbados
Tel +1-246-266-7497
lunainbarbados@gmail.com
 
Luna Design designs, produces and retails high quality jewellery made from silver and naturally dyed vegetable ivory. Originally from Columbia, this husband and wife team now live and work in Barbados but source all of their vegetable ivory from groups in Columbia who harvest, clean and dye the material for Luna. In addition, the company has recently made the decision to operate in a socially responsible way within their community. All of their product lines are assembled by a network of single mothers in Barbados who are compensated by wages but also with part of the profits the company makes. The owners show dedication to research and development and to the inclusion of design principles in their product lines, and, willingness to share their knowledge with other groups and enterprises. These factors and many others make this company a model of best practice principles.
 
Recently, Luna Designs has added Home Accessories Collection to their product lines and it is this new direction that is suggested for the product development and export project. In particular, the mobiles using stainless steel and vegetable ivory are a stand out product.
 
Materials: silver, vegetable ivory, natural dyes, stainless steel
 
6 Navazoe, Barbados
Contact: Marva Forde
Jessamine Avenue, Bayville, St. Michael, Barbados
Tel +1-246-228-4256
www.navazoe.com
 
Marva Forde is the single proprietor of Navazoe. The company focuses on creating hand made bags and carryalls based on new interpretations of local cultural motifs. The products are hand stitched using hand printed textiles and these approaches result in very high quality, unique collections. Forde shows dedication to research and development constantly upgrading her skills through academic courses like Central Saint Martins Fashion Program in London, UK. She is knowledgeable in areas like current fashion trends, the history of fashion and apparel as well as demonstrating a keen understanding of how to achieve quality.
 
Materials: leather, canvas, textiles, natural dyes, some woven plant
 
7 Nanny of the Maroons Traditional Craft, Jamaica
Contact: Ivelyn Harris
Cornwall Barracks, Moore Town PO, Portland, Jamaica
Tel +1-876-416-2081
 
This wonderful, very small company produces very appealing traditional Maroon baskets made by hand with selectively harvested materials. The lines have a great deal of resonance as they are based on an important historic typology of the region and use a very simple process of moulding and hand stitching. Everything about this company from the cooperative framework of the enterprise through the employment of women in the community to the dedication to historic typologies is extremely likable and relevant.
 
The owner, Ivelyn Harris, has enjoyed recognition, regionally and internationally, for her research of these traditional Maroon baskets and is open to working with a designer as she continues to develop these product lines.
 
Materials: sustainable vine and bark, clay
 
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