Inspired by Chatwin’s belief that humans are a migratory species, predisposed to a life of travel, Kmana aims to equip the wanderers, the makers and shakers in their journey towards creating a better future.
Kmana is the result of Bea and Kiko’s loving alliance that started more than 12 years ago in Barcelona, and spread through travels and experiences, until settling down in Bali, Indonesia. In 2015, Bea and Kiko were working with a Balinese–Javanese family of leather artisans to hand-craft oversized bags they needed for their own travels. Soon these bags were noticed by visiting friends and acquaintances who began to order their own personal bags and accessories. The bags started travelling outside of Bali, to Brisbane, Melbourne, Hong Kong and Barcelona.
Guided by the motto “less is more”, Kmana offers a genderless line of well-thought designs with clean lines, subtle detailing and timeless elegance. Kmana’s first collection is a touching tribute to Bruce Chatwin, talented travel journalist and world explorer. Using natural leather means that the bags have tonal variations and are therefore unique. Small marks or scars are natural features of the leather and celebrate the beauty of imperfection. As the bag ages, so does the leather, darkening and developing a unique patina. With time, each bag’s particular signs and scars will be a collection of souvenirs that will reinforce its emotional value.
The brand takes pride in being a part of the Slow Fashion and Fashion Revolution movements. The founders’ ethos reflect a wish for fashion industry to value people, the environment, creativity and profit in equal measure.
CLICK THE BUTTERFLY MARK TO DISCOVER THE BRAND’S UNIQUE POSITIVE ACTIONS
KMANA has been awarded the Butterfly Mark for their measurable impact and ACTION to sustainability.
Want to learn more? Click on the interactive Butterfly Mark on your left and scroll through each Positive Action to read a short description of the brands efforts and achievements as verified by Positive Luxury. You will also be able to find the interactive Butterfly Mark online on the brands website, retailer and partner sites.
IMPACT AND COMMITMENt
ENVIRONMENTAL FRAMEWORK – SUSTAINABLE RAW MATERIALS
Kmana uses one piece of full-grain cow leather or sheep leather for each bag, ensuring fewer seams and improved durability. The leather used is a by-product of the food industry. It is locally sourced and comes from the finest family-run tanneries in East Java, Indonesia.
The brand mostly uses vegetable tanned leather and has recently incorporated minimally processed chrome-tanned leather for the lightweight bags which also retains the natural characteristics of the original hide. The brand is also committed to developing a vegan line, free from materials like PVC or polyurethane. Tannins used to tan the vegetable-tanned bags are found in the local tree, barks, roots and leaves.
Besides the leather, all the other elements of the Kmana bags are hand-made, traceable and, to the maximum extent possible, ethically sourced. The lining is created from traditional weaves made of organic cotton. The brand uses recycled cardboard boxes and other packaging materials. Dust bags to protect the leather bags and accessories are made of bamboo.
ENVIRONMENTAL FRAMEWORK – ZERO WASTE TARGET
Kmana aims to be zero waste by the end of 2019. The brand keeps its stock to a minimum, prioritising small batch production to ensure the lifespan and quality of each bag and minimize its impact on the environment. Kmana is also making small accessories with the remaining leather to ensure all the cow-hide is used. The water used in the tanning process is reused, for instance for watering, as it only contains vegetable tannins.
SOCIAL FRAMEWORK – TRANSPARENT SUPPLY CHAIN
From cutting to sewing and hammering rivets, the bags are entirely made in Indonesia. Kmana partners with network of small workshops and cooperatives are assessed by a third party – the Bali Curator – to verify working conditions, the origin of the leather and the environmental and societal impact of the tanning process. The brand has also developed a Memorandum of Understanding so its partners can formally adhere to a set of ethical standards. Kmana has thereby encouraged its partners to introduce more sustainable practices such as the use of 100% vegetable-origin tannins and organic cotton yarns.
SOCIAL FRAMEWORK – EMPLOYEES PROTECTION
Artisans receive recognition for their skills, are paid fairly, and are treated with honesty and respect. The salaries are 50% higher than standard salaries and Kmana has introduced bonus schemes to involve the employees in the company benefits. The artisans also receive due visibility, so that they do not remain faceless.
SOCIAL FRAMEWORK – CULTURAL HERITAGE PRESERVATION
Strongly committed to the presentation of culture and identity, Kmana incorporates traditional textiles and fabrics into every design (e.g. Rang Rang from Nusa Penida, Ikat from Cambodia, wax, etc.) in an effort to help its partners preserve ancient weaving and natural dyeing techniques as well as skills passing down from generation to generation.
SOCIAL FRAMEWORK – COMMUNITY INVESTMENT
5% of all profit is invested in a number of social projects aimed at empowering communities and counterbalancing the brand’s carbon footprint. To date and since its inception in early 2018 Kmana supported supported the victims of the series of earthquakes in 2018 in Lombok, the work of the Bali Foundation to provide training and work opportunities for women living in the streets, the efforts of the Role Foundation in Bali to promote women empowerment and occupation – particularly of middle-aged women who lost their job as seaweed collectors and are now learning weaving skills – and the work of the White Helmets volunteers in Syria.