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What is Archive Madeau?
Archive Madeau is a collection of one-of-a-kind pieces that are timeless and unique and have the ability to take you on a journey. Each and every textile is hand selected by me. Therefore, I can vouch for its origin and tell its story. The “new” pieces are hand-made by artisan collectives working to keep their traditions alive, or pieces from indigenous villages and tribes with unique costumes and crafts.
Why did I start Archive Madeau?
During my seven months of traveling through Southeast Asia in 2014 I discovered rich cultures that have lost their voice during colonization, wars, globalization, industrialization, and the growing desire for faster, easier things. Since then I have had a need to highlight these artisans – in combination with my 10+ years in the fashion industry – I have been collecting textile treasures since. Now my collection has grown to an online shop, Archive Madeau, where I offer locally sourced, antique, artisan-made textiles – I have been collecting from around the world. It’s my way of connecting us back to nature. It’s my way of highlighting and appreciating what we can create with our own hands, rather than what machines create for us, as well those cultures and traditions that are under constant threat.
Why are textiles disappearing?
Around the world indigenous cultures are under pressure from the forces of modernization and globalization. In countries like Mexico, Armenia, Peru, to name a few, years of government neglect and a persistent racism have created an economic desperation which has forced generations of men and women to flee the poverty of their communities. These indigenous people are forced to emigrate to the bigger cities and leave their communities. In so doing, their traditions, ancestral knowledge, and crafts like weaving and embroidery as well as their social identity that these hand-crafts – their language provide.