fair trade

Why You Should Covet A Kantha

We talk about our love of kantha a lot at ibbi: and what’s not to love! Kantha quilts, kantha throws, kantha blankets, kantha cushions..they’re all truly unique vintage goodies, made in the brightest happy colours: timeless textiles to treasure forever. So what makes them so special?

Kantha is a type of Bengali embroidered quilt- the word kantha refers to a running stitch which has been widely used in Bangladesh and West Bengal for centuries. Our Kantha throws honour ancient traditions, using layer upon layer of softest,  time worn saris which are carefully stitched together with close rows of delicate running stitch. Each kantha is fully reversible and a labour of love, with quilts taking between 45 and 50 hours to create. And how to use? Well here are just a few suggestions and a few reasons why you should covet a kantha:

Kanthas are made to lay, drape and fold: and as they’re made from pure cotton they make the most spectacular bed blankets, adding fabulous colour to any neutral sleep space. Kanthas are made for sofas too: drape over the arm of your sofa or tuck in around the seat cushions for an instant new upholstered look

Whether you’re dining indoors or al fresco, kanthas make the very best tablecloths ( they’re pure cotton so easy to maintain). Blues are beautiful for Spring and Summer and reds are perfect for festive tables. Thicker kanthas make the best picnic rugs around. For small dark corners of your home, simply drape a small kantha over a side table, add leafy plants or bright vases of fresh cut flowers and dull corners will be transformed

If you’re a whizz with the sewing machine (or know a friendly seamstress) kanthas made the prettiest cushions and because they’re fully reversible you’ll have two stunning designs to choose from. Kanthas are perfect for small cushions for your bed or sofa and they make great floor cushions for teenage/student rooms. We also love to use kantha to upholster footstools: they make perfect statement pieces to suit any home, whether your preferred style be traditional or modern.

Just take one look at the stunning stitching that goes in to every vintage kantha throw and you’ll realise why they should be reassuringly expensive. They should have a good weight to them too: ours are made from 6-8 layers of sari cloth which means they’re super warm but not overly bulky.

To see more, take a peek at http://www.ibbidirect.co.uk.

Celebrating Fair Trade Fortnight

IMG_7686It’s ‘Fair Trade Fortnight’! So what a perfect time to be celebrating the arrival of our fabulous new Kiondo sisal baskets from Kenya. Colourful, unique, practical and oh so pretty, these baskets are one-off beauties and we just wanted to say that it’s a pleasure for us to support the work of the weaving cooperatives involved in creating these one-of-a-kind treasures.

Take a peek: all available now at http://www.ibbidirect.co.ukIMG_7659

 

 

ibbi Loves: Mother’s Day. Read About Our Favourite 5 (And There’s 20% Off At ibbi Until March 6 2016 Too)

Kiondo Sisal Baskets: available at www.ibbidirect.co.uk

Kiondo Sisal Baskets: available at http://www.ibbidirect.co.uk

We’re not the biggest gift givers at ibbi but we do love a Mother’s Day treat! So just in case you’re struggling to find a small something to help you celebrate on March 6th, here’s a few suggestions. We’ve chosen some of our favourite products with interesting stories, all made by artisans in marginalised communities, who we like to support. Read on for a bit of ibbi inspiration..

Why not look at:

  1. Our hand painted espresso cups: they’re pretty, available in lots of gorgeous colours, have come all the way from South Africa and because they’re hand painted, each is unique. March 6th is definitely the day to ditch the old cracked mug with amusing slogan and serve the first delicious cup of coffee of the day in something seriously pretty!
  2. Our metal trays: have a look at our amazing quirky metal trays. They’re available in different colours and sizes, they’re fair trade and hand crafted in Morocco, right on the edge of the Sahara. They’re stylish, unique and pretty indestructible too! Pop coffee, hot croissants, the Sunday papers and a small bunch of something handpicked from the garden on to one of these and your perfect start to Mother’s Day will be sorted.
  3. Our baskets: our beautiful fair trade Kiondo sisal baskets from Kenya are always a hit. They come in all sorts of shapes and sizes and they’re great for  those endless bits and bobs we all seem to have. Ideal for storing veggies, wooden spoons and spatulas in the kitchen, cotton wool balls in the bathroom. house keys, car keys, dog treats. dog leads, waste paper, kindling, endless toiletries..in fact you name it and our baskets will sort it.
  4. Our hand painted ceramic bottles: they’re perfect for oils or great simply as stand alone decorative accessories. They look stunning when grouped together and will give your window sill, kitchen island or dining table a beautiful splash of colour!
  5. A framed photo: whether it’s of you, the kids or your beautiful pets, a framed photograph is always special. And as we’re always looking for products with a story we especially love our recycled metal photo frames which have been a firm ibbi favourite since we discovered them last year. Lots of colours and sizes available and they look particularly good grouped together to create a stylish gallery on any wall space. So: wherever you are and whatever you’re doing, have a great day on the 6th and Happy Mother’s Day from us all! And remember, we’ve 20% off until March 6 2016. Simply use the voucher code: mum
    Hand Painted Ceramic Bottles: available at www.ibbidirect.co.uk

    Hand Painted Ceramic Bottles: available at http://www.ibbidirect.co.uk

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A Very Happy New Year. Now About Storing Some Of That Christmas Stuff..

FA_Lifestyle_Apr2015-9734_grandeA very Happy New Year from all at ibbi! I know we’ve mentioned our fabulous Kiondo sisal baskets from Kenya before but it is the start of a new year and if, like us, your house is suddenly full of all sorts of goodies which need storing away somewhere, indeed ANYWHERE.. then it really does seems like the perfect time to chat about these gorgeous, fair trade, hand crafted, no-two-the-same storage baskets! We’ve tried, tested and fallen for this collection of sisal storage solutions so when you’re next wondering where to put those spoons and spatulas, or your fruit, veggies, bathroom accessories, all important dog treats and all/some of that teenage/children clobber then do have a look at http://www.ibbidirect.co.uk and add a splash of colour to your home and get some of that stuff sorted!

The Kiondo sisal baskets, hand woven in Kasigau, Kenya are available now at http://www.ibbidirect.co.uk and further new collections arriving very soon. Price: from £10 plus p&p.

 

The New Frilly: Don’t Dilly Dally!

IMG_5874Our new hand crafted, hand painted ‘Frilly’ jugs have just arrived from our favourite pottery in South Africa and they’re selling fast. We thought they’d make good  pressies this Christmas and you seem to think so too!  They’re perfect for your milk or winter warming custard. Or why not use as a vase:  they look so pretty filled with festive flowers on your breakfast table too. Each jug is unique and there’s lots of colours to choose from.

Available now at http://www.ibbidirect.co.uk £26.00 plus p&pIMG_5887

 

 

 

So When it Comes To Patterns…

We had such fun at our photo shoot last week (the spectacular autumnal sunshine couldn’t have arrived at a better time!) after our gorgeous, timeless four poster beds and our new vintage kantha collections arrived at ibbi HQ.  And as the block printed quilts, kantha throws and softest kantha bolsters and cushions were casually piled and strewn and draped across the bed, we suddenly realised that when it comes to patterns,  you can simply never have enough! Our kantha throws and kantha accessories all have very different characters: some delicate, some bold. But all are beautiful and made with the utmost care: it’s good sometimes to add a splash of something unique to your home.

Kanthas available now at http://www.ibbidirect.co.uk