EARTH HEIR® works with a network of over 100 artisans, and a core group of 30 artisans hailing from women’s cooperatives, indigenous tribes and refugee groups, across six states of Malaysia.
Nelly is a Kenyah tribe weaver based in Sarawak who grew up tapping rubber and growing paddy. She learnt to weave by watching other villagers weave and has been weaving since she was 9 years old. She has 4 children aged between 17-23. We made our first order of 400 bags with Nelly for the Wharton Global Forum in March 2016, which took her 3 months to complete and enabled Nelly to earn almost 6 months worth of income.
Shop Nelly's Collection
The Terengganu Weavers Cooperative exists out of their passion to promote and sustain the heritage of Mengkuang weaving in Malaysia. Many of the women are considered master artisans in the Mengkuang weaving scene. Some of our fine Mengkuang products are one of a kind pieces woven by very experienced master artisans. The fine Kelarai technique can now only be found in one woman who is already 77 years old.
Shop the Khadijah Yong Collection
Cik Ngoh is a master weaver and is part of a women's group in Terengganu, located in the east coast of Peninsular Malaysia. As a young girl she learnt to weave songket and various other crafts from her grandmother, but weaving Mengkuang (Asian screw pine) has always been her real passion. She believes it is important for heritage skills to be continued and has passed these on to her children.
Shop the Cik Ngoh Collection
The Mah Meri
We work with the Mah Meri tribe to celebrate their traditional pandanus leaf weaving. The Mah Meri (Mah meaning people and Meri meaning forest) are one of 19 Orang Asli (indigenous) people groups of Peninsular Malaysia. Pandanus leaves are used in many rituals and crafts of the Mah Meri tribe. The leaves are processed into colorful strips and woven to create mats, hats, baskets, personal adornments and many other items. Women of the tribe use weaving as a way to support their families.
Shop the Mah Meri Collection
Mr. KL Ng
Mr. KL Ng has 3 children and has been unable to walk due to childhood polio at the age of 3. He is self-taught using artisan books and magazines, and has been making bamboo crafts for the last 30 years which he learned to help support his family. Most of the bamboo crafts presently available in Malaysia are made elsewhere. By supporting Mr. Ng, we are contributing to these skills being preserved and being passed on.
Shop Mr. KL Ng's Collection
Refugee Women / Made51
Shop the Made51 Refugee Collection
A group of refugee women filled with survivor spirit and grit. The members are from different countries and tribes across Central Asia and the Middle East which includes: Afghanistan, Palestine, Iraq, Syria, Iran and so on. Many women came to Malaysia with their families due to war or conflicts in their own countries. Some of them had received tertiary education and had professional careers in their home countries. Working with Earth Heir on the MADE51 project provides in- come for the families since they are not allowed to work in Malaysia legally.
A cooperative of refugee families of the Chin ethnicity, Myanmar. The group is supported with childcare center, and received training in tailoring and crafts-making. Earth Heir first started working with MangTha in early 2016 on training, production, marketing and financial management. Since 2018, Earth Heir works with MangTha on the UNHCR MADE51 project, training the women on jewellery making. The jewellery are now sold globally.
Meet the Disabled Artisans Cooperative
We work with a worker-run cooperative of Cambodian artisans with disabilities who are trained in craft production. Their goal is to improve the standards of living for people with disabilities in Cambodia through training and employment. They seek to give an often marginalised part of society the opportunity to earn a living and promote the in- dependence of the disabled. Trainees are given a stipend and provided with the tools for training, and when possible become part of the cooperative after the training is completed. They guarantee fair wages and benefits for all of the artisans. All profits are shared among the cooperative and re-invested in staff development and training.