The Origins Of Pampa
The story of Pampa Rug’s origins takes us across the Pacific Ocean to Northern Chile, where a young photo journalist, Victoria Aguirre was sent on assignment to shoot two Argentinian brothers who were on a journey surfing the entire length of the Latin American Pacific Coast.
When she arrived she met Carl Wilson, a friend of the surfers and from there the seeds of what would become Pampa were sown.
After this chance meeting the two instantly started a relationship and soon moved back to Australia together. Shortly after moving to Australia Victoria felt the compelling urge to remain connected to her strong Argentinian heritage and dreamed up the idea of connecting talented, genuine artisans and weavers that she admired from her homeland with her new home.
So Carl quit his secure full-time john and together they launched Pampa from their home in the Byron Bay Hinterland in 2012.
Just like the story behind Pampa, the products themselves are unique, full of character and passion. Handcrafted by traditional weavers and artisans in the remote towns and communities from Argentinian provinces and the Andean Mountains, each rug is an individual creation that brings together centuries old designs, patterns and weaving techniques.
The process begins with the livestock, that are cared for by the artists to ensure the finest quality wool. The wool is then shorn, carded and spun by hand and coloured using natural dyes extracted from plants, flowers, vegetables, insects, minerals and smoke, with the occasion synthetic used when required.
This wool is then woven on traditional looms that feature in the backyard of the artisans home in a process that can take up to six weeks. It is here that the traditional designs and patterns from their heritage come together in what becomes a finished Pampa Rug ready to be delivered to your home in Australia.
Empowering Culture and Traditional Skills Through Ethical Practices
At the heart of Pampa’s mission is a commitment to protecting the culture and livelihood of these Argentinian artisans and communities, ensuring everyone in the production process is paid fairly and respected for the true value and skill of their creations.
This helps to maintain artists and their communities strong sense of pride and tradition, and demonstrates to younger generations that by developing these skills they can make a good living and not be forced to move to the big cities to find alternative employment.
The money that flows into the communities also supports better living standards for everyone in the village.
Over time since the formation of Pampa the artisans from different towns and communities have now come together creating collectives who share resources and trade secrets for the betterment of everyone involved. The direct distribution to Pampa has also removed the need for many of these people to travel long distances - often by horse and cart - to set-up at markets to sell their wares.
Pampa continues to grow and develop their relationships with the artists behind these amazing rugs, throws and cushions providing more opportunities for the communities and better access to amazing products for their customers.
One of the benefits of this close working relationship is that Salt Living are now able to offer custom made rugs to order and deliver them straight from the Argentinian provinces where they are made to your home.