Just when you thought Austin’s east side couldn’t get trendier, socially conscious lifestyle brand Raven + Lily announced it’s opening its first retail storefront near the Cherrywood neighborhood next month.
Designed by Austin-based architect Matt Garcia, and decorated with stencils produced by Royal Design Studio, Raven + Lily’s new shop and design studio will be located at 2406 Manor Road between Sugar Mama’s Bakeshop and Dai Due. The store will sell eco-friendly clothing, jewelry, gifts and stationary made by women in Ethiopia, Kenya, India, Cambodia — and the United States. This May, the company is launching an apparel collection sewn by refugee survivors from Austin’s Open Arms.
"Women feel proud when they’re making something that people want. It only increases their own dignity and worth," says Kirsten Dickerson, Raven + Lily’s CEO and co-founder
Raven + Lily is a registered B Corporation based in Austin that empowers women artisans by working with them to produce quality, on-trend fashion pieces — all while paying them a sustainable income. Since its inception as a social business in 2011, Raven + Lily quickly developed a cult-like following of customers who snatch up everything from beaded necklaces and earrings made from recycled bullet casings to hand-loomed, tissue thin scarves. The brand has even caught on with celebrities; Tony Hale (Buster from Arrested Development) even wore Raven + Lily cufflinks to the Emmy Awards last year.
Currently, Raven + Lily products are sold at 150 boutiques around the world and the company helps employ 800 artisan women living in extreme poverty around the globe. By the end of 2014, the company hopes to raise that number to more that 2,000 artisans, says Kirsten Dickerson, Raven + Lily’s CEO and co-founder. Dickerson and her team are already planning partnerships in Malaysia and Guatemala for 2015.
“I love it when we go to a new partnership with women, women living in survival mode, and share the stories of hope with the people we work with. They’re excited to learn they’re not alone and they’re connected,” Dickerson says. “My favorite part of Raven + Lily is to help them succeed and make that connection. Women feel proud when they’re making something that people want. It only increases their own dignity and worth.”
Raven + Lily opens on February 28. They will be open Tuesday- Saturday from 10 am to 7 pm.