7100 news: We’re in the news!

Oh yes! Being the excitable creatures that we are, we’re tickled to find ourselves in magazine pages these days.

The first feature to appear was in Smile, which according to CNN is one of the world’s top 12 best airline magazines. They stuck a needle through Apol’s head (see if you can spot it), but she thinks this is just a minor price to pay for fame and glory. (That was a joke!)

Then there was the writeup in Metro Home & Entertaining, a posh decorating magazine published in the Philippines. We feel honored.

To Tara and Maya, and to Anna and Tina, our heartfelt gratitude. Starting a new project is never easy, but you girls have given us a great boost. Merci, thank you, salamat, and grazie!


7100 news: We’ve been making little bowls

(Version française en bas.) After a couple of months in business, we realize that one of the challenges we face is making people understand what it is we actually make. T’nalak and hinabol, while both beautiful fabrics, are known to very few outside those of the Philippines islands. What we do with them also adds to the comprehension difficulty factor, as sculpting fabric is a relatively new technique. We thought that one solution is developing familiar shapes; another is suggesting uses for the objects we create. These are why we recently created Gusto and Nais, two shapes of small bowls, and suggest  you use them as pot holders. Of course, they’d also be great as pencil holders and all-around catch-all. They’re in the shop.

FR: L’un des défis auxquels nous sommes confrontés est faire comprendre ce que nous faisons exactement. T’nalak et hinabol sont des beaux tissus, mais peu connus en dehors des îles Philippines. Ajoutez à cela le fait que le sculpture de tissu est une technique relativement nouvelle. Nous pensons qu’une solution est le développement des formes familières. Une autre solution est de proposer des utilisations pour les objets que nous créons. Voila donc Gusto et Nais, deux formes de petits bols, à utiliser comme cache-pots. Si cela vous tente, allez-y les utiliser comme porte-crayons et vide-poche. Ils sont dans la boutique.

7100 news: Getting it out there

(Version française en bas.) Two months after launching our brand quietly, we’re hard at work trying to get our products out there. Most of you know about our online shop, where today we’re putting up for sale our crumpled bags inspired by brown shopping bags. We’re also working on food containers for a really nice restaurant, and getting a set of products ready for Scènes d’Intérieur, a shop in Montpellier.

We’re looking for more boutiques we can work with, and that means a lot of footwork. Last Friday, for example, we were walking around in the 33° heat, carrying our rolls of ikat and a suitcase of products. Notice, that Apol did that in heeled wedges.

There was something about this bracelet that Apol had made for herself just the day before, and had no intention of selling. Two shopkeepers said they could see it in their boutiques.

The heat, the footwork, and most of all explaining the brand in a language not our own – not easy, but hey we’re having fun!

FR: Deux mois après le lancement de notre marque, au boulot! La plupart d’entre vous connaissez déjà notre boutique en ligne, où nous mettons en vente aujourd’hui nos sacs inspirés par ces sacs en papier kraft qu’on voit un peu partout. Nous travaillons également sur une commande pour un restaurant, et préparons un ensemble de produits destinés à Scènes d’Intérieur, une boutique à Montpellier.

Nous recherchons toujours d’autres boutiques avec qui travailler, et pour cela il faut marcher! Vendredi dernier, c’était au moins une dizaine de kilomètres, et sous une chaleur de 33 °.  Apol, femme courageuse, l’a fait portant des talons.

Ce bracelet que Apol s’était faite juste la veille, et n’avait pas l’intention de vendre, a connu un petit succès. Deux commerçants le veulent dans leurs boutiques.

La chaleur, les kilomètres, et surtout devoir expliquer notre marque dans une langue qui n’est pas la notre, ce n’est pas très facile, mais  comment on s’amuse bien!

The third-world life: More toys from found objects!

Forever fans of recycling, we’ve been making more toys from found objects. We concentrated on driftwood found on beach walks, like this little raft – cute, right? We made other things, a dragonfly, a butterfly, a bird, three flowers, and a couple of stick people on holiday, but you have to wait for them. The full series will appear in the Etsy France blog’s Cahier de Vacances next month. To help you wait you can check the 2011 Cahier here.

Fans de recyclage, nous avons faits d’autres jouets à partir des objets trouvés. L’été presque ici, nous avons utilises des trésors offerts par la plage, notamment du bois flotté. Voici notre petit radeau. Il y a aussi une libellule, un oiseau, un papillon, trois fleurs et un couple en vacances, mais il va falloir attendre, car ils vont apparaitre que le mois prochain dans le Cahier de Vacances de Blog Français d’Etsy. Vous pouvez patienter en jetant un oeil sur le cahier de 2011 ici.

7100 news: Our first crafts fair!

We did it, our first-ever crafts fair! It was at Nîmes last Saturday, in a fair organized by the Association Marquage. It was gratifying because people kept saying how “original” our products were, tiring because we we woke up at 5 a.m. and were working until 8:30 in the evening, and it was eye-opening because we learned how we can make our market appearances better in the future. Here are a few photos:

Ca y est, on a participé dans notre premier marché de créateurs! C’était à Nîmes samedi dernier, organisé par l’Association Marquage. Nous nous sommes levées à 5h30 pour travailler jusqu’au 20h30. Nous avons entendues <<Comment c’est original!>> à plusieurs reprises. Nous sommes parties avec beaucoup d’idées pour améliorer nos participations dans les marchés à venir. Voici quelques photos:


Gone travelling: Pierre in Peru

Excuse the week-long absence, as we are hard at work preparing for our first-ever artists’ market (19 May at the Parvis de la Maison Carrée in Nimes, from 10 am to 7pm, meet us there if you can!). For our travel series we could not resist these photos volunteered by one of the 7100 Islands husbands. These were taken by Pierre when he first travelled to Peru, and with one of those ancient gadgets, cameras with film! How vintage, yah?

The story goes that Pierre foolishly climbed a mountain too fast (he forgot which), lost consciousness at high altitude, and woke up in the home of this man and his adopted son, who nursed him back to health.

One of the last sights he saw before dropping to the ground maybe?

At a village market.

That’s our traveller with the little boy who saved his life.

How about you, what interesting spot have you visited? If you have travel photos you’d like published here, send us an e-mail at the7100islands@gmail.com.

The third-world life: Toys from found objects

When we were kids, there wasn’t any Toys “R” Us, we made up our own games and created our own toys. This probably explains a lot why we are who are today, but that’s beside the point. We decided to have some old-fashioned fun this mid-week, and make play things from pieces found on the beach, from walking on the streets, and our own scrap fabric pile. As you can see, summer is on our minds these grey early-spring days.

We took shells from two very fat clams, twigs from fallen branches, and pieces of cloth fished right out of our sewing room trash bin to make these sail boats. Tip; To get your sail pole standing up on the shell, cut a flat piece from a wine cork, and stick this to the shell with a generous dollop of wood glue. Once dry, poke a hole in the middle of the circle of cork. This is where the  twig-and-sail goes.

This trio we call “Bakasyonistas,” city folk on a beach holiday. They’re made from wine bottle corks and small shells, and scrap fabric and thread,. The faces are drawn on with felt-tipped pens.

P.S. In the shade and out of the sun, the bakasyonistas take their shell hats off.