The amazing textiles and soft furnishings label Atlas Tribe puts sustainability first.
As the mother to two boys, sustainability is always at the forefront for Carlie Okkerse. “What kind of world are we leaving to our children and how can we make and encourage positive change?” asks the brain behind the amazing textiles and soft furnishings label Atlas Tribe. Recycle, upcycle and reuse is Carlie’s mantra, and as she puts it, what better way to practice this than through stunning pieces of art for your home and life!?
“Atlas Tribe imports vintage rugs that have already lived a life in a faraway land,” says Carlie. “It's important for me to source products that do not resort to using factories, harsh chemicals or any sort of unethical means to create their products.”
Each cushion, rug and throw from Atlas Tribe is handmade with natural materials like the cactus plant, wool and pure cotton. Each vintage rug is a piece of art, woven mostly by women of the Berber Tribes in the Atlas Mountains. The cactus silk cushions are also handmade and hand-woven, making each and every one unique. “No two are the same,” says Carlie. “The colours and textures are simply beautiful.”
Carlie started importing cushions a few years ago, as a side gig while flying for Virgin. Her job allowed her to explore unusual and beautiful places, where she was drawn to stunning handmade fabrics and pieces that you simply can’t find back in Aus. Seeing a gap in the market to bring in some different colours, textures and styles from around the globe back home, she set up a small eBay store, originally selling Moroccan cactus silk cushions. They sold out in a flash. Fast forward two years and Carlie took on her side hustle full time. Atlas Tribe was born!
At present, Atlas Tribe products are sourced from Morocco, mostly around Marrakech and the Atlas Mountains. “I love that Morocco is a melting pot of cultures: Berber, Arabian and European,” says Carlie. “It's souks and medinas are magical, filled with rich, beautiful and bright ceramics, jewellery, lanterns and of course carpets, cushions and fabrics.”
As Atlas Tribe grows, Carlie plans to look to Mexico and parts of South America to source more beautiful handmade artisanal pieces. “Mexico particularly appeals to me for similar reasons, the rich colourful culture and people make it like nowhere else in the world. I love that the fabrics from these countries often tell a story. Magic!”
Look out for Atlas Tribe’s dedicated wall installation at DG! “I look forward to working alongside Darlo General and creating a space in store for people to come and view all of our beautiful products firsthand.”
We can’t wait!