Three panel midi kaftan in white and blue stripe with red design.
A collaboration between weaver, Juana, and her daughters, No.169 features white and blue striped base with bold red motifs. Pair with a contrast belt and shirt for the city, or chic white sandals for the beach-side escape.
To create the rich red dye for the yarn, weavers look to Cochineal, a parasitic insect that lives on nopal cactus. It is a very laborious process to cultivate and harvest cochineal for use in dyeing. While some weavers have a small amount of the live bugs, it usually is purchased from a professional grower. The insects look like white spots when alive and small grey pellets when dead. Before adding them to boiling water, they are ground to a fine powder on the metate.
Pippa Holt's editorial background as a stylist at British Vogue, a degree in fashion design combined with her love of travel is very much evident in her collection. Growing up on the beaches of Australia, she was inspired by her grandmother's style of tropical dressing at her seaside holiday home on The Great Barrier Reef Stylist Pippa Holt launched her eponymous line of kaftans which celebrates her love of indigenous textiles, far-flung travel and beautiful, original attire after finding nothing to wear in the searing heat while living in Houston.
Pippa says: "I love the authenticity of these kaftans and how comfortable they are to wear. I call them my 'Holiday Heroes'. They pack small, work day and night on a beach, in a city, with or without a belt. They are incredibly versatile. These kaftans are light, practical and yet stylish and reminiscent of far flung shores. In many ways I was collaborating on a collection which recreated that sense of freedom of dressing that I had so adored in Australia. The colours were original and unique and filled me with so much joy.”
Each kaftan takes one month to make and four to five days to sew its panels. Due to the way they are hand-crafted, no two are the same. Pippa has collaborated with Felipa, a head weaver in a remote village in Mexico who has over 50 years of experience. Along with her daughter, Angelica and a group of artisans, they create one off pieces following age-old traditions.