The Back Story
The image above is a shop in Istanbul that has an extensive collection of silk ikats.
J Wilder is a small business inside a big dream aimed at being a pathway between far flung artisans and tasteful buyers. We have spent considerable time abroad for our work, for education and sometimes just a tourist. We have found the world is beaming with creative efforts offering unique beauty. We aim to share these.
While many of our journeys are not to well known places. We doubt that some places will ever make your 'bucket list' of places that you must visit but we love the hunt for new artisanal accessories and where it may lead us. Often this excursions are repeated since seldom can we learn all we want to learn in a single visit.
This site was developed as our son, J. Wilder who announced at dinner that we should start a online import business. Soon our daughter chimed in, telling us that buying inventory - 'it's guilt free shopping'. Clearly as their parents both of them seem to be able to find treasures in unlikely places and our entire family loves sharing our clever finds. As some would say my kids have an 'eye'. They may be on to something, because we have seen that our beautiful shoes, belts, ponchos or scarves can transform an ordinary outfit into a bold gesture of color, helping one to express their own unique style.
Our vision is on items that will provide style inspiration. Our focus always is on handmade and affordable fashion accessories. We prefer organic dyes when we buy kilim or carpets. We demand only premium leathers and all cotton threads. We love silk and especially hand dyed silk ikat. These one-of-a-kind types of items are almost always produced in small cooperatives and family businesses. Our efforts sometime mean that we are advising in designs, sizing and colors which will allow these far flung artisans to develop a market among US consumers.
Our aim to be a fair trade business as well as a business providing sustainable products crafted in traditional methods.
Recently we had a wedding in our family. The old saying 'something new, and something blue' came to mind. For our middle daughter we crafted a sharply pointed mule for her wedding shoes from a blue & white antique suzani fabric. We made additional shoes for the bridesmaids and the mother of the bride. The shoes were a big hit and have generated requests for more wedding shoes.
We love people that love beautiful things