I just returned from the USVI...what a breathtakingly beautiful place. Island life turned out to be for me. I am not one for excess, but I am one for being fully prepared at all times. Meaning, I'm not much of an under-packer. I don't see the point. If I don't pack something, I might end up spending more money buying things on vacation than I usually would.
I shared a travel bag with my husband and was able to sneak in four, yes four pairs of Laadi Designs sandals without him even batting an eye. They fit so easily between shorts, shirts, and toiletries, he didn't even notice they were in there.
A few years ago Laadi Designs was featured on The Good Trade in the article 11 Fair Trade & Eco-Friendly Sandals We're Wearing in Warmer Weather. It is always nice to be mentioned amongst so many brands we admire like Nisolo, Able, Native Shoes, Everlane, Beyond Skin, Christy Dawn, Sseko Designs, Matisse, Insecta Shoes, and OluKai.
A favorite component of Laadi Designs sandals is the eco-friendly leather that is vegetable tanned with natural materials in the sun in small batches using age-old traditions. Due to the careful tanning process and the natural tannins, vegetable tanned leather develops a rich and beautiful patina, and actually get better with time and use. It doesn't crack or dry out and has a natural tone and smell.
I would say, Laadi sandals were made for island life. When I think of the ideal vacation attire, I picture outfits that can go unapologetically from morning to night. With our sandals, you will find yourself perfectly suited to hop from one activity to the next...no time wasted on primping.
Again, we stress avoiding excess, unless it means packing as many pairs of Laadi sandals as you can fit into your bag on your next vacation. Tuck them in anywhere. Your feet will thank you.
Nothing offers a stronger punch or statement than an eye-catching poncho. If you are someone who likes sitting under a blanket, Laadi Designs ponchos are for you.
Before I tell you the reasons our ponchos are so fabulous, I want to tell you about some of the hardest working artisans in a town called San Baltazar Chichicapam in southwestern Mexico. As you may know, relationships are an instrumental piece of the puzzle when running a business that sells artisan-made goods. Respect, communication, and compassion always come first. That is what separates fair trade companies from fast fashion. The family producing our ponchos are incredibly talented, take tremendous pride in their craft, and are always coming up with new innovative ideas. They are the same family producing the textiles for our sandals. It is an honor to be working with them and meeting spending time with them was a highlight of our last trip to the region.
Why you will love our ponchos:
- DURABLE: They are as durable as they are beautiful.
- WARM…without being hot. Being a person who can’t handle any extremes, our ponchos offer the perfect solution to staying stylishly warm without being too heavy.
- VERSATILE: Wear with a skirt and tights, wear with leggings, wear with jeans. There is no cap on how you can style these ponchos. They also offer two different tying solutions. Make a belt by tying the strings in the front (love your waist), or tie on the sides.
Earrings from Guatemala
This season we have added a collection of handmade earrings produced by a female cooperative in Guatemala City. We carefully curated a line that we knew our customers would love and watching the response has allowed us to add to our collection in the upcoming month.
Here is some information about the UPAVIM Cooperative where our earrings are produced:
United For a Better Life. UPAVIM strives to provide opportunities for women to recognize their potential, both individually and as a group of women united by the desire to create a better life. We believe that when women acknowledge their own capabilities, and have the space and structure to develop their talents, they begin to empower themselves.
Located in a "Red Zone" of Guatemala City, La Esperanza is a community plagued by gangs and violence. For the women of this community, UPAVIM offers a place of sanctuary. It is a space for them to be with their sisters and friends, the women of their community who give them love, hope, strength and purpose. It is also a place of employment to provide income and security for their families. While faced with the numerous challenges of poverty and violence, UPAVIM remains a beacon of hope for the women and children of this community.
Why we love our earrings:
- Lightweight: These are wonderful earrings for anyone with sensitive ears. They are light as a feather and can be worn comfortably throughout the day.
- Style: You can be sure when you wear our earrings, you are wearing a piece of art that you find at your local fast fashion boutique.
Wristlets and Extra Large Wristlets
Our best sellers have always been our eye-catching clutches and wristlets but this season we took it a step further by adding a new size: introducing the XL Wristlet. With a size of 13" x 6" x 2" these can fit quite a bit more than our standard size. They add a little bulk but if you really like to pack stuff in, this may be the perfect bag for you.
- 11" x 6" x 2"
Why we love our wristlets:
- The LOOK: The designs and colors this season are so lovely and complimentary that it is hard to pick just one.
- Depth: Our wristlets are the perfect depth to fit anything you would need throughout the day.
- Don't purchase if you can't take compliments because you will get them everywhere you go.
Traditional Zapotec Purses are 20% OFF
1. Artisan Workshops
Our artisan live in three small towns outside of Oaxaca. Visiting them in their workshops is without a doubt the best part of our trips. They share food, new designs, new looms, new workshops but visit after visit we get to know families, attend weddings and watch their families grow.
We encourage you to seek out artisans in their houses in many of the communities around Oaxaca to learn about their art and meet them in person. Check out Friends of Oaxaca Folkart for list of artisans, a summary of their art, and directions to their houses.
A few of our favorites include:
Zeny & Reyna Fuentes - Zeny and his wife Reyna create very impressive famous Oaxaca woodcarvings that are elaborately painted. The home is set up for visits.
Jose Juan Garcia Aguilar - Jose Juan comes from a famous family of ceramic artist. He specializes in skeleton ceramics often depicting animals and insects as skeletons or half skeletons. Although it appears somewhat dark, I find his work to be some of the most artistic in the region.
Pueblo of Ocotlán de Morelos
Prolongacion de Industria s/n
(From US) Cell 011-52-1-951-222-0050
(In Oaxaca) Landline to Cell 044-951-222-0050
Cell to Cell: 951-222-0050
2. Casa Oaxaca
Many people travel to Oaxaca only for the food looking for moles, blue corn tortillas, chapulines (grasshoppers), chocolate and mezcal. Food tours are everywhere, and there are several world class restaurants. Undoubtedly Casa Oaxaca is one the best restaurants in Oaxaca, I feel it never disappoints. Be sure to make a reservation and sit on their rooftop patio around dusk.
3. Monte Alban
Monte Alban is a large pre-Columbian archaeological site on the outskirts of Oaxaca. It is very impressive and can easily be reached by taking a taxi. Be sure to arrive a few minute before it opens to snap photos before others arrive.
4. Iglesia de Santo Domingo
The Iglesia de Santa Domingo is a main tourist attraction. Construction started in 1575 to be used as a church and monastery. Today it houses the Cultural Centre Museum of Oaxaca and still carries out church services. It is a beautiful building and the open air markets, pedestrian walkway, and hip restaurants and bars surrounding it make a great place to visit in the evening for people watching in front of such an impressive structure.
Other places worth visiting in Oaxaca:
5. Regional Town Markets - We love Tlacolula on Sunday or Ocotlán on Friday.
6. Mercado de Artesanías - Gral. Ignacio Zaragoza
7. Mercado 20 de Noviembre - 20 de Noviembre 512,
9. Amate Books - Calle Macedonio Alcalá 307
Summer is for freeing your toes and soaking up all of the sun your heart can muster. It is for pools, popsicles, bikes, hikes, patios, laughs, and outdoor naps. We have all of your favorite styles back in stock and ready to dive into the 4th of July.
Wishing all of our Laadi Designs customers a safe and happy summer!
Welcome to Laadi Designs! We are excited to bring you unique, handcrafted sandals from Oaxaca, Mexico.
It is a simple story how this came about. Alisa met some incredibly talented artisans. We fell in love with their work. We started designing and established Laadi Designs. We don't want to sell shoes. We want to sell shoes while supporting girls education around the globe. This may have been a simple idea but our plans are global. $1 from every sale will go to support girls education around the world.
Thank you for visiting Laadi Designs.
Alisa & Amber