An unmistakable presence of Portuguese Fashion Weeks for over 20 years now, Katty
Xiomara is one of the most renowned and established Portuguese designers of
recent years. Her unique vision and perception of style, marked by an uncanny
maturity, has led her from newcomer to business owner. Highly creative, Xiomara
dives in on other areas besides fashion, with commissioned collections for TV,
Theater, Music or Dance, some which with a strong social
commitment supporting causes and institutions such as the
Portuguese League Against Cancer or Associação Abraço. She is also a teacher and
lecturer at Modatex in Porto.
Despite having received several awards and
recognitions throughout her professional journey, Xiomara has kept true to her
principles, without compromising the natural evolution and maturity of her
collections. With quality as hallmark of each collection, each garment is made
in an atelier by senior seamstresses, whose lifetime of art-honing skills are
kept alive through each creation. All while putting a smile on their faces as
they realize their active role in society with so much to teach to younger
generations and all those willing to learn.
Originally from Cape Verde, Ângela Brito moved to Brazil where in 2014 she
created her eponymous womenswear label, focused on empowering women to feel free
through fashion and their own individual style. Drawing from the designer’s rich
cultural heritage as well as from her life experiences, the collections feature
a somewhat emotional, even affectionate design, cemented on clean construction
Each garment is an ode to the female body, merging beauty and
sophistication with elegance, simplicity, quality, comfort and durability.
Carefully produced in her own atelier, each collection exudes quality and is
produced in sustainable quantities, selling only online and at a handful of
She is also an active voice for women empowerment and
equality, having created the CURA movement, where black women such as herself
can share experiences, feelings and become stronger individuals in their
personal and professional lives.
Based in El Salvador, Pink Bags is a brand unlike any other. Besides handcrafting
every one of its handbags resorting solely to natural fibres and recycled
plastic, resulting in outstanding designs with added uniqueness and exclusivity,
the brand was created with the sheer purpose of raising funds for cancer
All profits revert exclusively for Fundactuar, a
non-profitable organization in El Salvador aimed at raising awareness and
increasing prevention for the two most common cancer types in the local
community: breast and uterine cancer. A strong social commitment Pink Bags
continues to support, along with preserving the ancestral handcrafting
techniques used by local women artisans.
Furthermore, the brand provides
free mammography to its employees, further emphasizing the importance of
Hamethop is a South African based designer handbag label, creating outstanding
leather bags with a unique feel. Handcrafted in Johannesburg, the brand employs
local artisans to create high quality pieces that elevate its artisanal and
cultural heritage to global contemporary standards. The very name of the brand
Hamethop means “prosperity of African Culture”.
Designer Tsakani Mashaba
draws influences from Ndebele symbols and patterns, merging local techniques and
culture to create sophisticated, luxury pieces, evocative of contemporary art.
By doing so, Tsakani is not only able to perpetuate her rich culture, but also
bring a positive impact to the local community, as she works with local
pensioners and suppliers on a slow fashion approach. Each piece takes time and
passion to create.
From Africa to the World.
Women’s lingerie and underwear may serve a very functional purpose, in both
protection, posture and support, but its perks go way beyond that. The right
lingerie provides women with a sense of well-being and sexiness, a first step
towards building self-confidence and self-esteem. With this in mind, Brazilian
label Madre Gaia set out to deliver the ultimate women’s lingerie.
set is handmade from 100% certified organic cotton, meaning no pesticides or
chemicals were used in its production, thus greatly reducing the environmental
impact on soils, local communities and of course, the end consumer.
Additionally, no chemical dyes are used in the creation of their prints (only
water-based vegetable dyes) and the strap rings are made from natural materials
such as coconut.
As if all this wasn’t enough, Madre Gaia is also an
active voice on the subject of body diversity and inclusivity, creating
dedicated styles for all body types and advocating self-love and acceptance.
They write a number of body positive articles on their blog, providing advice
for women with all types of bodies.
Toliva is a Brazilian based label focused on creating sustainable handbags from
locally sourced and reused natural materials. Each bag is entirely handmade
using traditional artisanal techniques, such as hand embroidery, turning each
piece into a unique work of art. This results in a unique combination of luxury
and sustainability, where the social community plays a critical
Toliva employs local women, provides them with the necessary tools
to learn a sustainable trade and empowers them to become active and independent
members of their local community. The outstanding techniques they learn
contribute towards creating a truly exclusive product, which embodies a very
human aura passed on by its maker.
Descending from a long line of artisans who devoted their lives to mastering
leather craftsmanship, Mulieri aims to perpetuate this unique art. Based in El
Salvador, the brand goes back to its roots to cement a brighter future for its
community, where the know-how passed on through generations can ensure a means
of employment for local artisans, old and young.
Passionate about the beauty and unique traits of natural leather, Mulieri
believes in creating timeless accessories and footwear that will outstand the
test of time, thanks to the outstanding design and durability of their raw
material. Each design is thought-out to prioritize efficiency, so almost no
waste is produced when it comes to the hides. Additionally, Mulieri promotes a
safe and ethical working environment, ensuring fair wages and equal
opportunities for all its employees.
Wanting to give back to its community, the brand also works with local youth
detention centers, promoting a second opportunity to youngsters through a
re-integration program. Marking their new beginning as included and spiritually
fulfilled individuals, Mulieri gifts them a pair of white shoes.
Born in Venezuela and based in El Salvador, Maria Teresa Valderrama creates
exquisite jewellery designs that compliment and empower every woman who wears
them. Made by women for women, each piece materializes the unique female beauty
and sensitivity, visible in the delicate, yet complex designs.
More than an accessory, each creation aims to awaken emotions in its wearer,
instilling a sense of happiness and well-being that ultimately translates
self-confidence and empowerment.
Based in El Salvador, Geraldine Garcia is a luxury womenswear label with a unique
philosophy, delivering exclusive clothing and accessories for discerning women,
who are not afraid to show their personality and individuality through fashion.
The label allows women to express themselves through unique prints, asymmetrical
cuts and unexpected volumes, achieving a perfect balance between daring and
Besides ensuring fair working conditions and career progression for all
employees, generating positive social impact in the local community, Geraldine
is also a strong supporter of migrant and refugees' rights. She donates part of
her revenue to RAICES Texas, helping to protect their rights, interests and
integration in society.
Lunar is a responsible South African womenswear brand focused on creating unique
designs resorting to the utmost sustainable materials. Since its inception, over
21 years ago, its focus has been on creating garments that feel as natural as
possible, both in fabric and design, while pioneering principles of fairtrade,
sustainable business practices and eco preservation.
Understanding the critical importance of these concepts, Lunar works with local
craftsmen, artists and artisans, providing them with fair working conditions and
promoting the economic development of the local community. It also aims to
leverage what nature provides, using materials that demand the least human
interference possible and natural dyes with little to no impact on the
environment. Linen, hemp, bamboo, silk and organic cotton are but a few of their
privileged raw materials.
Donado believes a women’s bag is an extension of herself, accompanying her every
step of the way and carrying her most important belongings. The Columbian label
works with local artisans to create versatile, efficient handbags that allow
women to become the best versions of her selves. With durability and
functionality in mind, Donado’s designs are made to withstand the test of time
without compromising aesthetics: timelessly trendy one could say.
Sourcing local materials and workforce, allows Donado to create new job
opportunities and revenue for its community, while preserving its cultural
heritage and artisanal know-how.
Based in El Salvador, Ketsali is a family run business focused on creating
one-of-a-kind, fully handmade jewellery and accessories. Using solely natural
materials, the brand is bringing millennial handwoven and handknitted techniques
into the 21st century, through a contemporary approach that makes them more
desirable than ever. Furthermore, Ketsali promotes a strong social dynamic by
bringing young adults and elder citizens together to share knowledge and
experiences, while making them an active part of the local economy.
With a truly inclusive work culture, Ketsali employs and provides training to
people of all genders, religions and levels of education. The result is a
community where everyone is given the same opportunities to generate better
income, access health benefits and enjoy ethical and comfortable working
environments where they can grow and excel. Ketsali is also committed to
educating its employees and community members on the importance of preserving
the environment, aiming to incorporate zero waste strategies into its business
In return for sponsorship you will receive
Early access to collections
A discount code for you and your family
Written accreditation in the site
A sponsor’s video on the platform
Membership of the FreedomeE 5P Accelerator Prize founder jury