Recap Jennifer's Hamam 2012
It is difficult to believe that an entire year has passed. Whether this is your first visit to Jennifer’s Hamam, or you have visited us before – in person or on the website - we thank each and every one of you for the efforts that you are making to ensure that Turkey’s few existing weaver families will have a livelihood come tomorrow.
Some of the highlights of the last year:
- · The third Jennifer’s Hamam shop opened in the Arasta Bazaar in August 2012
- · The first run of 2 kilogram towels was completed in October 2012 and sold out in two weeks. The next run is expected on the shelves in April/May 2013.
- · Bedsheets are back! Some of the first bedsheet sets in linen are due to hit the shelf in another month; cotton will be later in 2013.
- · One family of flat weavers moved into a much larger work space; one new loom was purchased for them
- · Another family of flat weavers resurrected four old looms that were in storage and got them up and working. These are specialized looms that can create much more complicated designs. The largest of the four looms is being run by a woman, which is very unusual. The first blankets and pestamel from this loom arrived in November 2012. The looms are still running this design and, slowly, each week a few more pieces come in. Watch for future blogs about this family and one of the few commercial women weavers they employ.
- · Senol – one of Jennifer’s Hamam’s senior sales staff – became a father in January 2013. (Congratulations, Senol!)
- · Several foreigners were hired to help during the high season.
- · More than 65,000 kilometers were put on the car - visiting weavers, buying threads, sourcing looms, and so on.
- · Production was effectively doubled.
The ancient art of weaving in Turkey can be preserved by increasing production and bringing a sense of honor back into the profession. Hand-weaving a textile results in a higher-quality product than factory-made goods. It also benefits the family and the community, and decreases our carbon footprint on the planet.
The growth of Jennifer’s Hamam and the need to meet higher production numbers means that many looms now operate on shifts with two or even three weavers. Looms have been acquired and repaired. Some weavers have moved into larger spaces. Some weavers who had left the art have returned, once again working in a tradition they love.
This is just the beginning of what is hoped will lead to a true revival of weaving in Turkey. Your support, patronage and assistance in getting the word out is appreciated by the entire staff at Jennifer’s Hamam -and especially by the weaving families and their employees.
Many people in the villages have lost interest in this traditional craft because of what has happened to weaving over the last 19 years, but as demand for these goods increases, it will regenerate the art into something that is viable for young people to invest time and energy into learning.
The next 12 months are the time to forge ahead at full strength. Together we can have a real impact on the world and this art!
Thank you for your commitment to Jennifer’s Hamam and its products! Wishing all of you an outstanding 2013 for health, happiness, prosperity and abundance!