Cervo, Beyond Culture

Art me Grep – From Women with Love


Our selection of products in the Bazaar Shop has been made carefully. One product we would like to introduce to you are the bags from "Art me Grep". Valeria Müller, the sister of Seraina Lauber (founder of CERVO Mountain Resort), is one of the co-founders of "Art me Grep".

In an interview with Valeria, you can learn more about the product and its origin.

Who are you? Tell me a little bit about yourselves.

Tina lives in Kosovo. She is the creative one and leads the women's work in her community. We have known each other for over 10 years.

I am at home in Switzerland. My husband is originally from Kosovo, so I have a connection with this country. I was fascinated by the beauty of crocheted bags. Also the possibility to support women from Kosovo and offer them a platform.

What are the inspirations behind the designs of "Art me Grep" bags?

The inspirations are generated in nature, while jogging, during yoga classes. But also from current colours and trends. The creation of a bag is designed by the women in Kosovo. As soon as the prototype is ready, I decide whether the bag will be brought to Switzerland. From time to time, I also send my suggestions. I think it's the mix between the two cultures that makes it.

Can you tell us more about the handmade details and techniques used in the "Art me Grep" bags?

The technique is nothing new. It is crochet and it is practiced in many countries. Our bags differ from the traditional crochet bags in that we use fine yarn. For this we mostly crochet with double yarn, so our bags can carry the weight well. We also use different crochet patterns. The details, such as adding fringes, beads, buttons and appliqués are carefully chosen. These give the bags an individual character.

Are there certain cultural or traditional elements that are integrated into the "Art me Grep" bags, and if so, can you explain them in more detail?

In Kosovo and Albania, crafts are often practised more intensively and traditionally compared to Switzerland. The flower bag, which we offer in different colours, is an inspiration of the traditional crochet technique. This involves making small crocheted flowers, petals or bows and combining them to make ornaments for traditional costumes or decorative objects. It is an ancient technique, often passed down through generations by women, and plays an important role in Albanian folklore. In the near future we will also crochet bangles inspired by Albanian tradition.

How does the production of these bags support the local community in Kosovo?

It enables exclusively women to pursue a job that they can divide up themselves and receive a secure income in return. In addition, this work has positive effects on health such as: stress reduction, improvement of fine motor skills, promotion of concentration and creative expression.

What message do you want to convey with the "Art me Grep" bags, both in terms of sustainability and design?

We deliberately chose recycled yarn in this context. Using recycled yarn reduces the need for new raw materials. Production usually requires less energy as well as water, and CO2 emissions are reduced. Using recycled yarn helps to reduce waste and reduce landfill. We make sure that no material is wasted. If we have leftover yarn, creative one-off pieces are created. We can also confirm sustainability in connection with our production. We offer fair working conditions and decent wages.

At Crochet Bag Design we combine craftsmanship with innovative designs. Each bag is made with passion and care by talented craftswomen to create a unique and timeless design. Our crochet bags are not only practical accessories, but also an expression of individual style. With our crochet bag desgins, someone becomes a trendsetter and inspires others to follow their own style.

How can customers interested in sustainable fashion buy your "Art me Grep" bags and make their own contribution to sustainability at the same time?

Jolene's room, Buchserstrasse 15, 5000 Aarau,
Schminkbar Basel, Theaterstrasse 16, 4051 Basel
CERVO Mountain Resort, Riedweg 156, 3920 Zermatt

About our online shop

With the purchase of a bag, a contribution to sustainability is already made. After the purchase, the customer can support the durability by not disposing of the bag in case of linting of the yarns, but by using a lint shaver, for example. Our bags can also be washed at 30 degrees.

Are there plans for the future?

Yes, quite a few. In the near future we will crochet purses or even necessaire. As already mentioned, we will also expand our range with bangles. We have other products in mind, which we don't want to reveal yet. There will be more collaborations.

Is there anything else you would like to tell?

With this project, I am giving women from Kosovo a platform that is still unique today. Through this innovative design concept, I want to encourage people to see Kosovo and Albania with new eyes, to break down prejudices and to build a positive connection to these cultures. It should help to promote mutual understanding and cultural exchange and thus contribute to a positive development between countries. There is a lot of potential and creativity in Kosovo as well as in Albania. Through the connection with nature, great works are created. I am proud to be able to present one of them.