REAL IMPACT launches the inspiring ‘CONSIDERED by Real’ collection, opening the door to artisans from the Pacific Islands
REAL IMPACT (formerly therealstore.com.au) in partnership with founding partner Pacific Trade Invest Australia and Water Tiger today launched CONSIDERED by Real – an inspiring collection of contemporary handcrafted homewares with a social conscience. The CONSIDERED by Real range is being showcased at the Life InStyle design industry event at the Royal Exhibition Building in Melbourne from 3-6 August.
REAL IMPACT is a pioneering ‘for profit for purpose’ impact company providing investment and management to assist the development of informal economies. Operating through a social impact lens, REAL lMPACT connects the extraordinary artisan skills of informal economies to the global creative industries of fashion and interior design.
Virginia Bruce, CEO and founder of REAL IMPACT, says: “We are currently working on the Pacific Project which is piloting with the four nations of Fiji, Vanuatu, Solomon Islands and Papua New Guinea. Through collaboration with local artisans and their communities, REAL IMPACT is building producer-retailer-consumer ecosystems to create a viable creative export industry.
“While the Pacific countries don’t meet the typical investment profile, through a process of innovation we have commissioned a range of products, from handmade cane furniture, cushions and weaved baskets through to printed artworks and wallpaper – all of which will have a positive ripple effect, creating new jobs and injecting much-needed funds into their communities.”
Trade & Investment Commissioner, Pacific Trade Invest Australia, Caleb Jarvis, says that the creative industries in the Pacific nations are an under-utilised asset. “They have substantial economic potential, yet there are many inherent challenges that are impeding that development,” he says. “REAL IMPACT has been brought on board to break down those barriers to market and to establish a viable supply chain that will enable these small nations to deliver to international markets.”
Ms Bruce explains that the aim of REAL IMPACT is to do more than simply source high-quality homewares. “Around 90 per cent of the economy of the Pacific Islands is informal, and is made up of incredible talent and creative artisans that up until now have had no understanding of what products they could be selling and who they could be selling to in overseas markets,” she explains. “To complicate things further, these nations in our experience often lack the basic capacities that developed economies take for granted. We’re working to establish essential infrastructures within the supply chains, such as a system to transfer money to members of the community and operational support. We’re combining aid with trade to build a pathway for the economy – and the people behind it.”
REAL IMPACT worked with interiors expert Kathrin Bruce from Water Tiger to identify the product lines that will appeal to the modern interiors industry, as well as employing a designer to work with local artisans to adapt traditional techniques to create new contemporary designs.
The CONSIDERED by Real lines being showcased at Life InStyle are:
Rennell and Bellona weavers | based across two islands in the most southern and smallest province of the Solomon Islands, the Avaki Women’s Craft Group comprises more than 145 permanent weavers. They are producing cushions, bags and light shades in a unique weave of two colours – brown and white and black and white.
SolCan Furniture Limited | this cane furniture co-operative based in Honiara has been commissioned to produce handmade armchairs, daybeds and occasional chairs and will benefit the Isobel community and their co-op of over 8,400 community members.
Paul Psalns Ramosea (Pollo) | a 37-year-old contemporary artist who draws from Malaita and Western Province influences and is developing inspired textile designs and wallpapers.
Papua New Guinea
Epalia Paitia – sourcing processed raw materials from the youth in the area who have harvested mountain rattan from the natural forests on their ancestral land to weave baskets with a distinctive triangular design.
The weavers of Vanuatu all have their own very distinct styles are producing the following: colourful pandanus baskets (The Penecost island); striking brown and cream storage items (Ngua), beautiful coconut and pandanus oversized coiled platters (Mangaliliu), and bags and homewares with a more refined aesthetic (Futina).
Wati Maraiwai – a 29-year-old single mother who is a bark cloth painter producing traditional masi art prints.
“REAL IMPACT is thrilled to be part of the Life InStyle trade event as it enables us to showcase the incredible work of these local Pacific Island artisans to international buyers, wholesalers, retailers, interior designers and stylists to start opening up a supply chain for their communities,” says Ms Bruce.
“The creative and design industries are always looking for new high-quality products, and CONSIDERED by Real is offering new products and materials to businesses that value good design while being considerate of social issues and natural resources. You can create new business opportunities while making a real impact for good.”
For more information about the REAL IMPACT and the Considered by Real product range contact:
CEO & Founder
M: +61 415 508 442
M: +61 416 097 678
REAL IMPACT is a“profit for purpose” enterprise developing a viable creative industry across the Pacific by innovating global supply chain processes to include high impact small batch production, and leveraging this through an e-commerce B2B market place connecting global retailers through procurement contracts with the informal economy across the Pacific. To date REAL IMPACT scoped and piloted 4 countries, Solomon Islands, Vanuatu, PNG and Fiji. Pacific Rise, a pilot innovation of the Australian Government to pioneer and facilitate a social impact investment market in the Pacific provided the initial scoping grant for the current program.
Founded in 1979, Pacific Trade Invest Australia (PTI Australia) is a DFAT-funded Pacific Island agency that creates jobs in the Pacific Islands by facilitating trade and attracting impact investment into the region. With an extensive network and a deep understanding of the Pacific Islands, PTI Australia supports private sector growth to reduce aid reliance, making long-term, sustainable improvements to the region’s economy and the livelihoods of Pacific Islanders.