When stone + cloth approached us about the launch of their new collection -- The Summit Collection, available TODAY on Kickstarter -- we have to admit there was a moment of breathless bliss because, as you'll see, the design of the bags is stellar and the good they do with the sale of them is exemplary.
We got to chat with Matthew Clough (we know, he's not a lady, but stay with us), the founder of stone + cloth. He began the socially conscious bag company over three years ago in an effort to raise money to send children in the Kilimanjaro community in Tanzania, Africa to school and has since asked us to #carryaneducation. Each stone + cloth bag purchased donates 25 hours of classroom time to an organization called the Knock Foundation (hint: this is where the lady guns come in). Clough and his company have set a goal to donate 25,000 classroom hours to the foundation by the end of the year. And we're here to help spread the word.
About The Summit Collection:
Matthew Clough shared with us that in assessing the stone + cloth customer base, they found that women made up about 75% of it. In knowing that, he surveyed (and listened to) his lady friends, women designers and other stylish and influential ladies to find out the things they liked, the things they loved and the things they thought needed improving with the stone + cloth bags.
As Clough and his team at stone + cloth began creating The Summit Collection, they knew they wanted it to be timeless. And with that, decided to utilize only the top four fabrics from the last three years to create new designs, to ensure that their customers will enjoy the new products as much as they have enjoyed the previous products.
It's important to stone + cloth that they employ local companies in order to build and maintain close working relationships with members of their community, which is rewarding for everyone involved. The bags in the new collection range from $65-195 for a truly premium product, without the inflated retail markup.
Find your next favorite bag here and know that your purchase is helping one socially conscious company reach their goal to help a deserving (lady-founded) organization in Tanzania.
More about the Knock Foundation from Co-founder and Managing Director, Kim Krowne (we told you we'd get to the lady guns):
"Knock Foundation partners with under-served communities in developing countries to provide the access and opportunity to pursue an education, practice healthy living and exist in a clean environment. We have long-term projects in Tanzania focused primarily on education and business development, as well as medical training and equipment donation in multiple countries."
"Knock addresses some of the key issues in Kilimanjaro the hold people back from achieving their full potential: access to education and access to capital. In terms of education, Knock gives the opportunity of education to student who show high academic aptitude and leadership skills paired with significant financial need. Our provision of lunch in two large primary schools supports the education of over 850 students by helping to improve attendance as well as attentiveness in the class. Lastly, our after-school program supplements the primary school curriculum by giving students access to leadership training, confidence building exercises, and reproductive and sexual health education that aims to make them more successful and productive adults. Our Chipuka (meaning 'sprout' in Swahili) loan program gives low-income individuals, primarily women, access to capital to purchase productive assets that allow them to build small business, such as selling fresh milk."