About the bags
Each bag is hand-made from African kitenge fabrics, available in local markets. With sturdy materials and high-quality sewing, the bags hold up to sustained use over several years.
Because they are produced on demand in small batches, quantities are limited. Only 1-3 bags are made in each fabric/style. Most are entirely unique. If you find a bag you love, snatch it up quickly or someone else will!
Note: The bags are hand-made, not mass produced in a factory. Dimensions and other features may vary slightly.
About the tailors
Ref-Threads is a group of refugee tailors in Kakuma Refugee Camp in northern Kenya. In Kakuma, formal work is illegal and the dry climate makes farming impossible. Instead, most people survive on meager UN rations. Tailoring allows Ref-Threads members to earn an income to support their families.
The Ref-Threads members came to Kakuma after fleeing their homes in Uganda, Sudan, South Sudan, Burundi, Congo, and Rwanda as few as 4 and as many as 20 years ago. Most of the women were never formally educated. In addition to sewing, Ref-Threads trains them in Kiswahili and their own local dialects.
Each bag includes a tag with details about the tailor who made it.
Threads of Opportunity customer
"I have a Prada tote and overnight bag set that I keep having to sew back together when it breaks. I'm taking them to the conseignment store and replacing them with these! I can tell they're very well made."
Courtney Kalmbach, mom and small business owner
I love my bag!! It is my go-to bag when we are running somewhere and I need to throw some toys and stuff together for my daughter. Great for moms and anyone really!! Great cause too :)