Ala Mairi Silkarmour


la Mairi is an inspiring label founded by Fatima Mahmood’s desire to preserve and promote the creative traditions her duel-heritage. Born and raised in Pakistan, Fatima moved to Edinburgh to study fashion and textile when she was 19. It was here that a simple documentary on Harris Tweed and the decline of handloom weaving skills would motivate her to travel all over Scotland in search of handloom weavers and Shetland lace makers for her own designs. In honour of her native Pakistan, Fatima also visited women’s welfare centres in the district of Rawalpindi, where she found artisans in beautiful hand embroidery and silk weaving. The brand’s firm sense of ethical responsibility is clear. Only independent, small-scale artisans practicing indigenous craftsmanship are commissioned and in Pakistan, this ethical consciousness in sourcing materials helps to provide marginalised women with a sense of empowerment. Ala Mairi’s social enterprise also includes a passion for environmental ethics, with natural Shetland spun wool, luxurious modal and bamboo silks, and organic cottons all being sourced with minimum impact on the environment. Through its championing of time-honoured traditions in textile-making, ethically sourced materials, and compassion for disadvantaged communities, Ala Mairi is a brand that can certainty be praised for its humanitarian heart. The brand has, of course, been awarded the coveted Positive Luxury’s Butterfly Mark for social responsibility and sustainability. The rich colours of South Asia and the vision of sunset against the Scottish landscape have inspired this truly unique collection of scarves. Interestingly, Islamic architecture is reflected in the embellishments and digital prints that adorn these lovingly crafted pieces.