895433 - Phi Yoo
" I belong to the Hmong hill tribe and I'm proud of that."
Phi Yoo captured our hearts from day one. At home, she makes hemp backpacks for virblatt with some friends who specialize in making backpacks. In their small, inconspicuous sewing room, our high-quality virblatt backpacks are made from a combination of hemp, ethnic weaving and embroidery. The result is a handcrafted harmony that gives us the opportunity to let off some steam and push the boundaries of our design ideas.
Phi Yoo has won our hearts, but why does she have our trust?
Working with friends
At Phi Yoo, every product she makes is created in collaboration with friends who are just as passionate about their craft as she is. They work for equal pay and in a relaxed and open work environment where each employee is encouraged to show their individual style.
Hemp has been part of its history for years. The Hmong hill tribe of northern Thailand mastered the art of this material before we even heard of it. The embroidery and weaving details she uses to pay tribute to her heritage in the items she creates come from generations of artisans before her who passed on their knowledge to make the most of these local textiles.
A celebration of their ethnicity
Phi Yoo grew up embroidering from her parents who learned the craft from their parents. The traditional approach she takes to entering these intricate designs pays homage to where her culture originated years ago. Today, the striking cross-stitching of the Hmong tribe's robes adorns many of our products and is an integral part of our character at virblatt.
Since we started working with her, Phi Yoo has tried as much as possible to improve and innovate our bag designs to ensure they are durable, strong and ergonomic. We couldn't be prouder of the commitment she has shown us to bring you high quality products that showcase her expertise.
Often working on such a small scale, it can be difficult to expect her to keep up with orders, especially given the care and attention that goes into each design. So we learned to communicate with her and accept her situation and not let her rush or pressure her so she can focus on the artwork behind her craft.
We have taken her into our hearts and only because we are so grateful for her smiling and positive nature. That's why we love her and are so grateful for the opportunity to work side by side with her to create unique bags that shed light on her culture and traditions.