It's the things we value in life that lead us to our everyday decisions. We strive for the causes we believe in, stand firm by the principles we hold dear, and fight for the people we love. It’s these choices, though seemingly small and insignificant, that make up who we are as people. The things we value are a propelling force and can be very telling of one’s journey and personhood.
The Valore Collection illustrates the story of Filipinos living in other parts of the world yet still carry with them the things they value the most. We hear about these modern day heroes every day – how they found themselves uprooted from the familiarity and comfort of home in order to secure better lives for their loved ones back in the Philippines. It is their hard work, sacrifice, and dedication to the people and principles they value that brought life to the bags of Valore.
The details of these bags were inspired by the duality of the lives of the Filipino diaspora. They reveal the truth that wherever we find ourselves in the world, our being Filipino is forever woven into our very being.
For the very first time in R2R history, we're launching a collection of largely leather bags. To continue our mission of quality and excellence, we used not just any kind of leather but the softest and most durable kind there is: Italian leather. It was a conscious decision to pick a material that is the highest in quality, timeless in form, and functional in many different ways. Pick from two colors, taupe for a classic look or blue for a basic-with-a-twist style, and never have to worry about pairing them with the items in your closet.
The bags of Valore are accented by trimmings of handwoven fabric by artisans of two different indigenous communities in the Philippines. These native ethnic designs peeking through the bags’ classic silhouettes represent the idea that wherever Filipinos are in the world and no matter how much they’ve changed given their new homes, they will always carry with them the values that make them Filipino to the core: warmth, joyfulness, resilience, and a whole lot more.
We used two different kinds of indigenous fabric for the Valore Collection: Mangyan Ramit Nautical woven by the indigenous tribes of Oriental Mindoro for the taupe pieces and Kinen-Ew Pink Fiesta woven by the indigenous tribes of Benguet Province for the blue pieces.
This is the heart and soul of every R2R bag, woven by our amazing urban artisans from their homes in different parts of Metro Manila. Satin jersey was used for the handwoven panels in the Valore Collection. This kind of fabric is twice as better (and takes twice as long to weave!) than our regular cotton fabric because of its smoother surface that makes it more difficult to make into a panel but is less prone to dust and dirt. It’s the best choice of fabric for a collection of bags that’s meant to last a long time.
A new technique that our artisans learned especially for this collection, the waxed cord knotting is meant to represent the relationships we always carry with us that know no distance or time. It’s the finishing touch to the Valore Collection’s meaningful story.
Read a more in-depth story about this collection: Behind the Scenes of the Valore Collection: A Q&A with R2R's Lead Designer Chris
How do we live with more compassion and intention? How can we incorporate sustainability into our work and in our relationships? In Life Stories La Union 2018: Sun, Surf, and Sustainability last June 29 to July 1, 2018, we gathered a tribe of like-minded people who wanted answers to these questions and to travel deeper.