Where we make our Lavender Bags

My mother taught me to sew so I was well prepared to create my first lavender bag, and a great many to follow.  However there was always going to be a time when I needed to outsource the manufacturing of my Lavender Collection.

I was apprehensive about creating rising costs, having to commission very large quantities and finding greedy factory bosses.

By chance I was introduced to Jesus Mereno, the managing director of IPSIS, a state aided scheme to help handicapped people into work.  I have to say his name gave me hope.  Part of the IPSIS group is a sewing factory run by Chantal.   I instantly liked her.  She is a ‘yes we can’ lady which is rare to find in France and was happy to start off with relatively small quantities with the belief that these would grow.  The factory employs 40 people with various mental or physical handicaps.  Due to their conditions they are unable to hold down jobs in conventional factories.

 

Chantal is one of the finest people I have worked with.  She is highly efficient, frank and always enthusiastic.  Such a pleasure.  Nora runs the factory floor, has a divine smile and is a stickler for detail and precision.

Their sister factory fill all my lavender bags.  They are 2 kms apart with frequent deliveries between the two.  Elisa 30 is also an IPSIS organization and Noelle is the boss of the factory floor.  She has 14 employees who meticulously weight my lavender, fill the bags and tie the pretty bows.  Elisa 30 has 4 separate divisions in total:  a commercial cleaning service, a motorbike garage, a restaurant and the assembly factory.  In total they employ over 100 handicapped people.

Noelle has worked hard to perfect my collection and nothing leaves the factory before passing before her beady eye.  Once it has left her factory I know it will be perfect.

These factories give opportunities to handicapped people, I for one, take for granted.  They provide the pleasure of job satisfaction, the rewards of being part of team and a very important salary.

Being so close to where I live I am able regularly to visit the factories.  I adore seeing neat rows of my lavender bags all ready to go.  I can tell you it beats getting on a plane to China!

Lavender Locks Rock

Has anyone else noticed the trend for lavender-coloured hair?  No longer the preserve of the ‘purple rinse’, lavender is this season’s most beautiful beauty trend. Chanel embraced the trend at the 2013 Resort wear show. And where Chanel goes, others will follow.

Plenty of the big fashion houses sent models down the runway with pretty purple hair, while celebrities such as Katy Perry and Kelly Osbourne have  both opted for lavender locks this season. It’s a much easier colour to carry off than some of the more ‘outrageous’ colours out there, and it goes with most complexions.

If you’re getting bored of your current colour, then lavender could be perfect for you. It’s flattering, and what’s more, is a great way to inject some more lavender into your life.

In order to dye your hair lavender, you first off have to bleach your hair. Bleaching your hair is the most difficult part of this process, because it can severely damage your hair if it’s done wrong. If you’re feeling at all uncertain, enlist the help of a professional. Paying for the style up-front could cost a lot less than having it fixed later.

But if you can’t quite bring yourself to go the whole way, lavender eyes are a good nod to the trend, as seen at Versace. Although we have been conditioned to think that blue/lavender tones are a mistake (and should be left in the 80s), lavender around the eyes can actually look very pretty.

There are a few tips you might want to follow though to make sure you choose the right shade of lavender for you.

Cool colours like deep purples and lilacs make green eyes look beautiful, while navy or indigo can make blue eyes pop. Lilac and purples look best on brown eyes and bronze-skinned, olive-skinned and black-skinned women.