Kmana: Time-less life-time bags for the wanderers
by Leticia Bordoni on May 16, 2019
A mixture of calmness yet movement, roughness yet attention to detail, fashion forwardness and consciousness - those are just some of the thoughts that go through your mind when holding a handcrafted Kmana travel bag in your hands. Bea and Kiko, the founders of Kmana, have taken their previous experience in design and anthropology and created something that is not only easy on the eye but also easy on the earth. Their passion for the environment has lead to a product that benefits the consumer and the constructor, making sure that 5% of all proceeds go back to Bali, where the bags come from.
P A U S E has had the pleasure of working with Bea in the previous editions of our pop-ups. To get more insight into how and why Kmana was born, we asked her some questions regarding their journey until now and what the future holds for the brand.
“I have always loved travel bags, especially “old-school” leather bags. They remind me of the old leather suitcase that my grandfather used to travel with and that we still keep in our house, covered in worn-out stickers from the places he visited with his wife (i.e. Lourdes, Paris, Palencia, etc.)... It is a timeless piece, the perfect companion for a traveller, someone who is willing to open his/her eyes and ears and leave to appreciate the difference, to be often challenged.”
The idea started brewing after a trip Bea took to Bali in 2013, where she discovered the islands colourful culture and skilful artisans. After struggling to find a bag that would fit her travelling wants and needs (and her budget), combined with the inspiration and enlightenment gained from her trip, she decided to take it upon herself to create the perfect travel bag. And not just any bag. A timeless and genderless bag “that could tell a story even before they started travelling.”
Being kind to the earth is something that resides in their mantra: “we can all shake the world in a gentle way.” Kmana bags are meant for wanderers that find beauty in the quality, durability, and design of it - but most of all, in the message that it sends.
“We need to slow down, we need to consume less, consume better, more consciously. We need to move from a consumer mind to an investor mind, to be more curious and conscious about what we are buying.”
When asked about her views on sustainable fashion and conscious consumption, Bea bluntly answered with calling that type of mindset “common sense”. While they are committed to learning continuously through their journey, being mindful of what mark they leave on this earth will not be something that they will compromise with.
“No one should die or suffer for fashion. Fashion should not come at the cost of the environment. there is no beauty in a garment or an accessory where there is suffering. To me, it is that simple. This implies a major change, and somehow the end of fast fashion as we understand it today. Brands need to change. Consumers need to change. Laws have to be passed. It is a massive but very much needed change. And it probably starts with a few individuals, companies and players: a few brands driving change, a few consumers requesting more transparency…”
In the future, Kmana will continue working towards their goal of spreading awareness of the cause by making sure they are consistent with their quality, active in the community and network of partners, and keep holding on to their values. So what can you expect from them next? Bea and Kiko are now finishing their third collection which pays tribute to Lady Hester Stanhope, the fearless and controversial traveller that paved the way to all women who were longing for adventure.
Want to meet and support other changemakers like Bea? Join us at the next edition of the PAUSE pop-up in London in the historical United Grand Lodge of England - we will be situated in the Freemasons’ Hall from the 13th till the 22nd of September. Let’s turn the London Fashion Week sustainable.
Photos from Kmana Website