We’re so excited to be back in the U.S.! We have quite a long road trip ahead of us, but we’ve got the jeep packed to the brim and ready for our first round of New Crop Pop Up Shops. We loved our coast to coast roadtrip last year, that this year we’re doing it again with some art markets and summer festivals sprinkled in between. We hope to share New Crop Shop’s vibrant and diverse energy at each place that is part of our tour, and also those serendipitous places that aren’t. If you’re at any of these stops…come by our booth and say hi!
This post has been waiting to be finished for several weeks now it seems. So much has happened since Jaisalmer. We’re not even in India anymore. I’m still trying to piece together all the insanity from the last couple of months. It’s wild to look back at these photos and believe I was actually there. Jaisalmer was a special place. Special in a so many ways but I think a big part was due to the fact that it was the first long stop of my solo journey around India while Charmie was experiencing Ashram life in the north. This was a city I got to know all on my own. A place where I had several meals with locals and randomly made friends with an older chap from a nearby desert village that I ended up hanging out with for a couple days. This was also a place where I had never felt so isolated or alone. It was the “off season” so the town was extremely quiet as far as tourists go. Nothing but Indian faces and broken English conversations for days. I took advantage of having absolute freedom of going any direction without discussion. Each day I would go out and walk wherever the wind took me until sundown, getting lost in the maze of alleyways throughout the ancient fort. I remember feeling like I had discovered some sort of mystical desert wonderland and I had it all on my own.
Traveling alone in India was truly life changing. So many moments of peace, anger, excitement, euphoria, shock, confusion… all that can never be re-lived or fully explained. These are images and memories that I will forever hold onto as being one of my favorite stops along the journey so far.
As I’m stocking up for the shop, I have been receiving pre-orders for traditional ethnic textiles hand stitched and hand-dyed by surrounding tribes as a source of sustaining their culture. I have fallen in love with these magical forms of art translated into vibrant fabrics. These textiles connect us with disappearing cultures in the developing world as fast as old-growth forests. Fabrics of the Indigenous people are silent storytellers of traditions, and art. I’m attached to each piece I send off boundaries away, and happy to know they are to be appreciated for their aesthetic significance. If you are interested in pre-ordering tribal textiles please email me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Happy Halloween everyone! I admit, I do miss toasting pumpkin ales, roasting pumpkin seeds, and having an excuse to bust out in costume with friends. However I am very grateful to experience something as beautiful and eye opening as our couple weeks spent in Cambodia. They recently just started welcoming tourists into Cambodia the past decade or so after their suffering through the Khmer Rouge. Still today, the struggle remains in this poverty stricken country as they battle corruption in their government.
Understanding this, we were more aware of the darkness found in their past which showed through their music and artwork. If you ask the locals they will share their stories of death, starvation, and survival. When visiting galleries during our time in Battambang, we noticed the essence of darkness expressed in the majority of the artwork that I, as an outsider can never fully comprehend.
Walking through the alleyways of Battambang I was in awe to see the French architecture still remained here. I also noticed many women on their sewing machines on the bottom floor of their house which opened to the outside like garage doors. The vibrancy of fabrics I felt represented the Cambodian spirit. Through a dark past, the survivors, and those to follow express their hope through their smile, willingness to reach out, enthusiasm to work, and in their craftsmanship. I especially was drawn to these colorful kaftans with playful patterns which danced in the wind. We brought them to the rooftop of our hostel and let the sun and wind bring the kaftans to life.
These will soon be available in the shop.