Apocheta Artisan Designs
Fair Trade, Hand Woven, From the Heart of Peru
Apocheta is a clothing and accessories brand with a difference. We connect fair trade artisan producers from the Peruvian highlands with consumers seeking premium fashion and design with a conscience.
Our lines are created by leading designers working with the finest, hand-woven and other artisan textiles. Our designers craft the highest quality business and casual wear that comes with a unique story, every piece of cloth carries the history of the producers who created it and each one of our designs reflects the deep heritage of the country it they came from.
Our textiles originate from highly skilled weavers in the Peruvian Andes. The art of weaving has a long and important role in the history of civilization in ancient Peru; an art that thrives today in the hands of expert weavers using the very finest Alpaca wool and pima cotton. Continuing this ancient tradition provides an important source of highly skilled employment, supporting families and villages by connecting high quality products with an international market.
Our producers and designers follow fair trade standards throughout their entire supply chain. Our woven textiles are produced in worker-owned cooperatives that exist to provide income and empowerment to the mostly female weavers(not all weavers, we have a lot of hand crafted crochet, knit, and hand woven and some machine woven) that hand craft the textiles used by our designers.
The Apocheta brand comprises creations from internationally renowned designers in Peru, experts in the use of these premium materials to create contemporary designs that are based on ancient traditions.
Alpaca fleece is produced from the alpaca, a camelid native to Andean regions of South America and closely related to the llama. Alpaca wool has been harvested and woven for centuries by indigenous Andean civilizations and is prized for its softness and luxuriousness.
There are two main types of Alpaca wool; Suri and Huacaya. Suri produces long and silky fiber with less crimp and is given to tight weaves, making it suitable for fitted clothes. Huacaya on the other hand produces a spongy, high crimp fleece which is suited for knitting.
Alpacas are hardy creatures that survive extreme temperatures and altitude of the Andes, the second highest mountain range on earth. For that reason, their fleece provides excellent insulation against both the cold and heat, repels water effectively and yet is extremely light and very fine.
There are varying degrees of quality of Alpaca fiber. Baby Alpaca is the name given to the animal’s first shear, when its fleece is at its very finest. Because each animal produces slightly different quality fiber, Royal Baby Alpaca is the name given to the best pick of the harvest.
In order to keep your Alpaca wool garment in fine condition, it is recommended that you hand wash using gentle detergents in lukewarm water. Soak the garment for no more than thirty minutes before gently rinsing out the detergent, being careful not to stretch the weave. To dry, remove the excess water between towels before reshaping and laying out the damp garment on an even surface to dry, protected from direct sunlight or heat.
Finely woven garments or fitted coats should be dry-cleaned. Try to find a cleaner that has dealt with Alpaca garments previously. When storing your garments, be sure to protect them from moth damage by storing them in a sealed environment, and avoid using moth balls.
Pima is a species of cotton that requires a rare environment of intense sun, high humidity and heavy rainfall to produce its crop of unusually long and silky cotton fibers. Pima cotton is also known as Sea Island, Creole or South American cotton and was first cultivated in Peru’s coastlands over six thousand years ago.
Pima cotton is considered a superior type of cotton and is favored for luxury textiles due to its softness, durability and absorbency. Because it effectively absorbs and releases moisture it is considered highly “breathable” and is used for lightweight and delicate garments.
Pima cotton is a durable textile and can be machine washed on a gentle setting. Because colors may run it is advisable to wash deep colors separately and wash garments that are part of a matching set together. Cotton can be machine dried and ironed.
The Vicuña is the wild ancestor of the alpaca and llama, native to the extreme heights of the Peruvian Andes. Vicuñas produce the world’s finest and most luxurious wool, measuring just 12 micrometers in diameter, much finer than cashmere or other comparable fibers.
Vicuña fleece has adapted to their extreme living environment, and is made up of hollow air-filled tubes that are coated by microscopic scales that cause the fleece to interlock and form an insulating layer.
Vicuñas are almost impossible to breed in captivity and produce a tiny amount of fleece every three years, making their wool one of the rarest and most expensive animal fibers on earth. The Inca civilization of ancient Peru protected the Vicuña by law, reserving its fleece for Royalty only. Today, the Peruvian government also protects the rare and endangered animal with a system for protecting and conserving the creatures.
Apocheta Artisan Designs
Spokane, WA 99216
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