Today I’m bringing you a simply wonderful brand, all the way from Australia. When I stumbled across it by accident online recently whilst on the hunt for some South American goodies, I was immediately struck by its products and ethos. So without further ado, let me introduce you to Pampa, an Australian store specialising in beautiful Argentinian homewares. I already know you’re going to love it. Oh, yeah and you’ve never seen products displayed like this before. Just wow.
The wonderful Pampa is the brainchild of two photographers, one from Australia and one from Argentina. At least that explains why the product shots are all gorgeous!
“Pampa traces a map that connects talented weavers in South America with the global community”
The company was set up in ‘the Byron Bay hinterland’ of Bangalow, Australia where its founders decided that they wanted to explore Argentina’s most remote indigenous communities, seeking out rugs and cushions made by local artisans using traditional materials, designs and techniques. And I am glad that they did. As you can see from the photos highlighted in this post, the rugs are simply beautiful, showcasing Argentina’s dramatic scenery to fantastic and full effect.
“WE EXPLORE ART. WE PRESERVE HERITAGE. WE EMPOWER CULTURE. WE ARE PAMPA.”
I always enjoy getting to the nitty gritty of a company and finding out what makes them tick. Is the social responsibility bit just a facade? Or does the firm really care about what they do, why they do it and what they give back? Well in this case, I can safely say that Pampa really mean what they say. Firm believers in rediscovering threatened cultures and reviving lost traditions, they support skilled artisans in remote Argentina and beyond to produce homewares and accessories that are woven works of art. You can’t get much better than that!
Pampa is driven by a belief that products should be ethically made and fairly traded, which is why they deal directly with their artisans. They are committed to paying a fair price for the rugs they buy as it helps to guarantee the weavers get the wages they deserve. When you buy a Pampa rug, you are directly supporting the local artisans in buying food and clothing, paying school expenses, accessing medical care, and sourcing new tools and materials for weaving.
There is a sustainable angle to Pampa’s work too – allowing the artisans to express themselves creatively and use the techniques that they have been taught over the years has helped to provide local communities with a strong sense of cultural independence and pride. This helps to demonstrate to the younger generations that weaving is an honourable and profitable vocation, which in turn helps to preserve this traditional form of art for years to come. And I for one am banking on that as I really, really, want to be able to visit some of these communities in Argentina in future.
I love that Pampa’s rugs are made using traditional Argentinian techniques and traditions. All are handmade, from fibre to finished product, using high-quality wool that is shorn, carded and spun by hand. Pampa uses natural dyes extracted from plants, flowers, vegetables, insects and smoke to add colour, occasionally using additional synthetic dyes where appropriate. The patterns and designs have all been passed down through the generations and are inspired by nature, and the rugs are all woven on traditional looms in a process that can take several weeks.
Each of Pampa’s collections is also named after the Argentinian landscape they originate from, adding to the charm and authenticity of the products. And each one is unique. The individual designs and slight imperfections are in essence the signature of the weaver who made it. Which I think is simply wonderful. Why buy a rug that has been mass produced when you could own a one-off treasure that has helped a traditional artisan?
My personal fave
Honestly, I love pretty much everything on offer. It’s all gorgeous and so obviously carefully curated – each piece considered and deliberate. But, I have a thing for horses and Pampa’s horse prints are something really special. I am rather taken with the black and white ones, like this beauty below. I would love to hang this somewhere on my wall and all of the Pampa prints would work really well in most design schemes, even super-minimalist ones. Want.
This one is horse number 29 and will set you back AUS $295 (about £169). It ain’t cheap, but with an adorable face like that, I’m still tempted. How about you – yay or neigh? (Sorry, couldn’t resist a cheeky horse pun – I’m clearly writing this too late).
Obviously I couldn’t feature a new store without showing off one of its cushion collections now could I?! So here you go – check out the beautiful Monte cushions. Made from Argentinian sheep’s wool, these cushions are sumptuous, glamorous, and they have pompoms. Pompoms people! What’s not to like!?
So what do you think of Pampa? It’s pretty awesome isn’t it? And they have worldwide shipping too for an added bonus. As getting to South America is still a while away for me (I doubt I’ll get there within the next 3-4 years at least), this gives me a lovely way to support local Argentinian communities. I really like the fact that by doing something I enjoy (i.e. shopping) I will be helping to ensure that by the time I get to Argentina in the flesh, I’ll still be able to see and buy these lovely rugs, blankets and cushions.
Where do you shop that gives you the warm fuzzies? I would love to hear about it – so do comment below.
Happy travels, and shopping