volta atelier

Volta Atelier Combines Environmentalism with Humanitarianism


Feb. 27 2020, Updated 8:03 p.m. ET

Founded by accessories designer Fernanda Daudt, Volta Atelier is a leather bag company whose social and environmental activism remains unmatched among companies who claim to do the same. The term “volta” means to give back in Portugeuse. The 100 percent, recycled leather products sold by Volta Atelier are hand sewn by a network of Haitian refugees and women in need living in Brazil. And because the work can be done from home, these women are able to earn wages while simultaneously being at home and caring for their families. And with a minimal carbon footprint, the brand is held as one of the most sustainable and altruistic accessory companies.

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courtesy of Volta Atelier

Each of the hand-made bags Volta Atelier produces are made out of discarded leather scraps. The scraps are then hand selected and cut using an energy-efficient press-cutting method. Working with a migrant care center in the southern Brazil, Volta Atelier hires Haitian refugees to hand-stitch the bags. They also recruit numerous women who are in need including domestic violence survivors and previous inmates. The company trains each of their workers the craft of hand-sewing and gives them sewing kits so that they can work from the comfort of their homes.

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Because of the philanthropic and environmentally friendly aspects of Volta Atelier, founder Fernanda Daudt has received many honors for her work. This past year, the company received the Green Product Award, which is given to companies and brands who have the most innovative and sustainable products within the global market. And, in February of 2019 Daudt was invited to the “Good for the Earth, Good for People” seminar held by the Library Study Hall at the United Nations Headquarters to speak about Volta Atelier’s mission. She also presented her work in handcrafted production at the “Designing the Development” panel at the third Global Creative Industries Conference at the University of Hong Kong back in 2017.

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courtesy of Volta Atelier

Written out on their website is their mission, which is to “encourage a circular economy, breathing life back into lost cultural heritages and growing communities from the ground up.” These 100 percent leather bags range anywhere from $120 to around $1,250, depending on the size and color of the bag. Each purchase is helping give a woman a new life and each bag has little to no environmental impact.

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