Women in Kathmandu, Nepal, knit this unconventional, colorful winter gear from pure wool. A single artisan is responsible for each item from start to finish, from casting on the first stitch to the hand-embroidered accents.
The oatmeal-colored hat features textural floral accents and cozy earflaps that can be secured with a tie or worn flipped up.
The mitten flap can be folded over and secured with a coconut-wood button to leave fingers free, or folded over for warmth while still leaving a small exposed hole in the thumb open to enable texting or typing on a cell phone.
Handmade in Kathmandu, Nepal. 100% wool. Hat dimensions: Total Height (including earflap): 11"; Width (Circumference) at Brim: 21"; Tassel Length: 6"; Weight: 15 oz.; one size fits most. Mittens: Total Height (including mitten flap): 11"; Palm Circumference at base of thumb: 8 1/4"; Cuff Opening: 7.5"; Weight: 14.5 oz. One size fits most.
Hand wash or dry clean.
When Icelandic designer Gerður Kristjansdóttir was traveling in Nepal more than 15 years ago, she met a group of artisan knitters whose exceptional knit quality, dedication to their artistry, and craft heritage reminded her of the strong knitting tradition in her home country. Recognizing the opportunity to bring these women’s work to a wider audience, she helped set up a cooperative that would provide the artisans with a flexible and stable work environment, and enable them to create the kind of non-traditional designs that Gerður knew would be a hit in the U.S. and Europe.
Since the partnership began, 11 knitting centers have been established where women can come together and work cooperatively if they choose, or they can work at home while keeping an eye on their children. Knitters receive free healthcare, and many of their children’s education is funded through a scholarship fund set up by the cooperative.