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Denim Stars in Ikea’s New Handmade Collection

Ikea launched the first iteration of what will be an annual home accessories collection dedicated to traditional craftmanship Thursday.

Mavinn features 20 handmade items from seven social businesses. Located across Asia, these partners—Saitex, Spun, Doi Tung, Classical Handmade Products, Ramesh Flowers, Industree P.T. and Rangsutra—provide long-term job opportunities for people from vulnerable groups, Ikea said.

The collection includes baskets, rugs, a lampshade, an apron, bags, cushion covers and a wall organizer and was made with cotton, over-run materials from denim production and natural fibers. “Most” materials were sourced locally in Bangladesh, India, Thailand and Vietnam, where Ikea’s partners are located, the Swedish home furnishings retailer said.

“One of our goals with this collection has been to create a diverse collection of handcrafted items that someone who enjoys walking at a local crafts market would like,” Ikea designer Maria Vinka said. “We have a beautiful collection with handcrafted items, a natural appearance with contrasts using embroidery and colorful splashes. That is something I think our customers will really appreciate.”

Mavinn follows a similar collection released last summer. Vardandev included bath towels, storage pieces, bowls, baskets and planters—all created in partnership with socially conscious businesses in Asia that are working to build opportunities for marginalized groups. All five companies from last year’s Vardande collection participated in Thursday’s Mavinn release, with Industree P.T. and Rangsutra being the two newcomers.

A pillow in the Mavinn collection.

Though Ikea has collaborated with social businesses since 2012—today, the efforts have expanded to more than 11 partner companies—the Mavinn collection was developed more recently, during the pandemic. Forced to pull back on travel, Ikea’s designers were forced to adapt, Vinka said.

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“When working with our social business partners, we take a very collaborative approach to understand their specific techniques and strengths, to get the most out of their crafts and create a diverse collection,” Vinka said. “Due to the pandemic, we had to adapt and shift our work to digital. So, all our sewing, braiding and weaving had to be done in front of a laptop camera.”

Future Mavinn collections will have their own unique characteristics. Moving forward, Ikea plans to keep “many” of the partners from the debut collection, while also introducing new social businesses, Vinka said. Future collections will see Ikea “experiment” with new contrasts, patterns and textures, she added.