Sustaining craft heritage and qualitative empowerment
S jo creates original, one of a kind accessories, drawing inspiration from traditional textile craftsmanship and handcrafted by women artisans from villages in Pakistan.
S jo works through ‘Threads of the Indus’, a design-led research and development project aimed at empowering village-based women artisans of stitch-craft. Textile designer and weaver, Seher Mirza, initiated the project in 2009/10, as part of her PhD design research at the Royal College of Art, London. The products created in rigorous design workshops are a combined effort between Seher and the traditional craftswomen, a testament to their design journey together. The project is now self-funded, having worked with Sindh Rural Support Organisation (SRSO) in the past.
Concerned about the deteriorating quality of craftsmanship in traditional textile crafts in her native country, and the lack of emotional connection between maker and craft - Seher decided to address this through her own design and craft practice and started the project. S jo’s unique pieces reignite passion, excitement, and inspiration between craftswoman and her traditional craft. By encouraging creativity, design thinking, and design decision-making, it enables personal development of the women while creating a sustainable fair wage income.
The pieces are handmade collectively, through the exchange of ideas and shared craft practice, building a special relationship and journey, to form S jo, our brand.
The villages and communities
We work with four villages of different crafts in the region of Sindh in Pakistan. Three of these villages are of various kinds of stitch-craft working just with women artisans. Our most recent village, AMB, crafts traditional hand weave with only a few master weavers of Kheis. This community of makers consists of both women and men. It required us to re-think our methods and adapt them in a way better suited to weave.
Learn more about our work below!
S Jo is a hybrid project made business model that improves the quality of life in micro communities through craft. The outcome is beautiful, unique quality jewellery pieces and higher living standards. For more check out Threads of the Indus project.
- Courtesy Indigo Memoirs
More on the Threads of the Indus project methods.