We make a big deal of transparency. We have put the right to know how your fashion is made, acquired and paid for bang in the middle of how we operate. You’ve probably already guessed that we don’t have the most… shall we say run-of-the-mill process – so we’re going to show you exactly how we work. How we only trade with women in the local Wayuu communities. How we work to avoid the greedy middle men. And how we personally go to the far flung province of La Guajira to quality check and buy each and every Wayuu London bag you can see across our online store.
This article sets out to give you a better idea of what we do, but true to our mantra of transparency, you can get in touch with any other questions that you may have.
From the Andes to La Guajira…
Wayuu London HQ is in the beautiful Andean city of Medellin, Colombia. It’s the perfect place to get your head down, work all day and drink too many cups of Colombian coffee. We spend most of the year here, but you can’t find our products in any old city-center store, no siree. For that, we need to go on a bit of an adventure.
(Cue montage music)
First of all, we need to fly to the Caribbean city of Santa Marta (please, don’t feel too sorry for us). The dry heat hits us as soon as we step out of the small airport and the mountainous horizon of Medellin is replaced by the long, blue, curving ocean. Any reasonable human being would stop here and hit the beach with sunglasses on and Pina Colada in hand, and that’s exactly what we did.
Early next morning we take a 3 hour bus ride to Riohacha. Out of the left window the sea glistens as ever under the intense sun and little fishing boats occasionally add to the scene. As we leave behind the tourist hotspots of Santa Marta and Taganga life for people in this part of the world begins to show itself.
Riohacha is one of those all out attack on the senses kind of places. The bus stop throngs with people coming and going, new smells waft past us, and we are met with the inevitable sea of gesticulating taxi drivers. We love this little well of life and culture in the northern Colombian desert. Next we check into our hotel and we get scouting for the best products for Wayuu London – straight from the very women who spend 3-4 weeks crafting each bag.
This is where we need to get serious. Along the coastal boulevard women from all over the area come to set up their stalls. We usually do a couple of laps and take mental notes about which designs caught our eye. We then take a time out and compare notes.