Welcome to our online store and blog.
As we exit quarantine we all have our eyes opened more wider than ever. As a design company that globe trots in search of real design and inspiration we love to give our readers an insight to fellow artisans who we are in awe of and collaborate with.
Thomas and I had come across Alicia Kossick in New York and then again at Maison Objet where by far she had one of the most stunning booths. Since Miami is NYC's 6th borough it was only natural to bump into here in Miami again.
When we moved to Miami I was so in awe of her aesthetic my intention was to paint our home "in living color" and when I heard we were having a photoshoot for a top publication (still waiting for its release) it was Alicia I called on for her exquisite eye and aesthetic to come into our home and style the shoot.
From Tuxedo Park in NY to Mexico City and back Alicia is the embodiment of the art of giving back. I believe that there are a few chosen people who are here on earth to highlight certain peoples and cultures where they themselves become the conduit and magnifying glass for what lies within. This is the true essence of Alicia.
One of Alicia's Interior Design Projects
While being in investment banking in Mexico City Alicia was fascinated by all the culture and colour of Latin America. Having been born into a multiethnic family she was pre disposed to the exposure of having Latin roots. Named after her grandmother she is the Tocaya (namesake) and has drawn inspiration from a life well lived.
Alicia (grandmother) was spotted by Stanley Marcus , as in Neiman Marcus, at a soda fountain shop in the 1950's and went on to becoming the a model and muse to designers like, Valentino, Adolfo and Cassini.
Alicia's grandmother, also named Alicia who she is the Tocaya (namesake of)
After having two kids in Mexico Alicia moved to New York City. At a cocktail in NYC everyone kept asking Alicia where she got her bags and clothes. It was at that very moment Alicia sensed there was a hidden business model in the ethnic threads she gravitated towards which became her signature style.
The investment banker within went into high gear. She immediately came up with a microcredit interest free loan that the local artisans in Latin, South and Central America could utilize.
Alicia hopped a plane and flew down and "Fashionized" as in made fashionable (thats right Mo"Fo I just made up that term) an cottage industry into a thriving industry evolving Fidelia (aka Fanny ) from local weaver to business woman with 220 women weaving away.
Alicia in Colombia with the Wayuus Community Empowering them through trade
"There are thousands of weavers in the Wayuu community and we have over the years been able to work with finest weavers and their mothers, daughters and aunts. @polishedcoconut we have learned that in helping one another through optimal and above fair trade pricing to artisans and co-op based production commitments, these women and their families have found economic stability and creative empowerment. And in today’s busy times, a true friend finds the time to see you off at the airport💗🛫"
Alicia is unique in the fact that she is not looking to be a designer or have her own label but yet to utilize the trade and art that already exists using the textiles and colors giving hundreds of years of culture a modern twist enabling the craftswoman and craftsmen to keep techniques alive.
This is precisely why she was chosen by Tory Burch Foundation for women's empowerment group showcasing women in business giving back to the community and impacting society.
One of the reasons I wanted to start a company was to start a foundation that would benefit women and children. Social responsibility is part of our brand DNA. It’s not about charity. It’s about helping to empower women to help themselves. By providing resources and tools, we can level the playing field for women entrepreneurs, and helping them to grow their businesses benefits their families, their communities and, in turn, all of us. - Tory Burch
Alicia with Hugo from @back2earth
Alicia is THAT person who may not be the status or level of a Tory Burch but is constantly connected to all communities she comes into contact with.
Wether its Ugo from her kids school who she donated her land in Coconut Grove leading the youth-led composting movement on a mission to grow gardens, not landfills - Ugo went on to win a $50,000.00 scholarship award from General Mills Foods as a youth climate leader for this project - or Luella creative director for Anthropology .
Anthropology invited Alicia to create a pop up at Anthropology London and at the Victoria and Albert Museum in London where she participated in a question & answer being the voice of craftsmanship from South America.
The Victoria & Albert Museum in London Frida Kahlo Exhibit
Anthropology's Creative Director Luella Lane & Alicia at the V&A Museum Q&A
If all this were not enough the reason I am in awe of Alicia because as the saying goes "it takes a village" , Alicia has a freaking village of 4 kids 5 animals and friends and family who she loves and nurtures while juggling everything at the same time.
I always tell Alicia wether she is composting, cooking or entertaining she looks like a one woman Ad Campaign. I now realize why, it is because she is so authentic she doesn't have to be.... because she already is...
The 4 Apples of Alicia's Eye
In true form Alicia was the 1st business to move into the West Grove neighborhood seeing the potential in the community way before anyone else. The Polished Coconut is a must visit when In Miami.
Thank you. Loved the whole read!