Tag Archives: fashion

Ikat Weaving

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My fascination with textiles began at quite a young age and has escalated into full blown LOVE.
Beautiful prints, patterns and weavings always catch my eye but investigating the intricacies of how these patterns on woven textiles are made has really become a passion. These different types of age old crafts have incredible stories behind them and one of my missions is to keep these crafts from disappearing.
These techniques are so utterly incredible that I truly believe they must never disappear so that future generations can admire them as much as I do!
Kantha stitching and hand block printing are two favourite techniques of mine but the more I learn about Ikat, the more I fall in love with it

Ikat is possibly one of the oldest forms of textile decoration. This intricate weaving technique uses a method called resist-dye in which the yarns are tightly wrapped and dyed before the fabric is weaved. Used to pattern textiles, the ikat technique is very tricky to perfect but end results are a true work of art.

Due to the complexity of the technique, Ikat has been known to symbolise wealth and prestige. Most prevalent in Central Asia, Indonesia, India and Japan, ikat is also found in many cultures and is known as daraee in Persian which translates as wealth, and this fabric is often included in a bride’s dowry during wedding ceremonies.

The word ikat in Indonesian literally means to tie or to bind.

Ikat is popular all around the world and many different cultures have their own adaptation of it, each just as intricate as the next. The main types of ikat weaving are weft, warp and the magnificent double ikat. I won’t go into too much detail here but if you would like to find out more about these amazing techniques, visit our Artisanal Crafts page.

Weft – the crosswise threads on a loom that are passed over and under the warp threads to make cloth and the weft yarns are dyed a solid colour.

Warp – the lengthwise or longitudinal threads on a loom over and under which the weft threads are passed to make cloth.

Double ikat – both the warp and weft yarns are tied and dyed before being woven into a single textile. Double ikats are understandably quite rare.

The long wall hanging pictured above is one of my favourites and is a Sumba vintage ceremonial piece, made using vegetable dyes, double ikat weave and the mirror-image technique.

If all you can think about now is the beauty of ikat, pop in and browse my lovely collection of pretty ikat prints.

Also available in a number of different ikats is the gorgeously funky Ikat Kirsty Coat like the one I am wearing. These fantastic coats are fun and easy to wear long coats made from a cotton/silk traditional ikat. They feature a collar, side pockets and a pretty hand block cotton print lining. No two are the same and each one was designed by me, with love.


Victoria’s August Favourites

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Inspired by nature, crystal clear waters and bright blue skies, the constant chirping of cicadas and birdsong always makes me smile. Enjoying dancing on my own and singing out loud at home, I wanted to share some of my August favourites with you. The background story behind many of the pieces we make is often lost, but my passion will never falter and I take great joy in sharing these stories with you…

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Our SEWA Eye Cushion, designed by Victoria, is one of our signature cushions. Ethically made, supporting fair trade, this handmade eye-shaped cushion has beautiful embroidery, sequinned eyelashes and has a running kantha stitch around the outside. Available in various colours, all on a white base, it is made by SEWA, the Self Employed Women’s Association in Delhi. SEWA helps workers to achieve their goals of full employment and self reliance, while overcoming daily challenges. Find this cushion in-store or online SEWA Eye Cushion.

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The ‘Jody Dress’, designed by Victoria Made With Love & Laughter, is one of our signature pieces, repeated annually in gorgeous new hand block prints and produced by a small family business we’ve worked with for many years. The Jody Dress is the ideal all-seasons, bohemian super-dress! The soft light cotton is elegant, breathable and comfortable in summer, the shape, featuring a frilled, rounded neckline and long, blouson sleeves, is versatile and flattering on all body shapes. It looks great loose, accessorised with a belt, or with a sweater thrown over in colder months. An incredible 14 meters of fabric is used on the six-tiered, floor length skirt, making it the ultimate dress for swirling and dancing!

Available in-store & online Jody Dress.

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The ‘WIF Silk Lace Waist Dress’ is designed by Victoria Made With Love & Laughter and made for us by the Women’s Interlink Foundation. WIF is a movement in Calcutta that rescues vulnerable young women, taking them out of human trafficking, giving them a home and teaching them a skill. The Women’s Interlink pieces are ethically produced and made with pride, providing shelter and comfortable working conditions for all.The midi-length dress features a lace waistline and comes in 2 beautiful silk-screened prints. They are only created in small quantities and each dress is personally signed by the woman who made it.

Available in-store & online WIF Lace Waist Dress.

Producing in small quantities not only provides uniqueness, but also ensures quality. Our glitter signs, designed by Victoria, are made for us by a small family run business we adore, in the North of India. The father, son & daughter team bring our designs to life with incredible skill, using crafts passed down from one generation to the next.Available in large, small, silver and gold, we offer the sentiments of ‘Love’, and ‘Peace’, but also ‘Fuck-It’ if you’re feeling particularly mischievous! ‘Magic’ will be back in store soon and we also have glitter wings, glitter ampersands (&) and a glitter tree of life.

Available in-store & online Glitter Signs.

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Supporting and promoting disappearing crafts has always been close to our hearts. The more intricate and sustainable the craft, the more important it is to keep it alive! Promoting traditional craftsmanship is essential to highlight the heritage of a country, through the use of local materials, preserving traditional knowledge and talents. The ‘Ibiza Espadrille Sandals’ are the perfect bohemian footwear for island-hopping in the sunshine. Handmade in Ibiza, true to a traditional Balearic craft, they are meticulously worked from indigenous natural cactus fibres and finished with a rubber sole. The string technique allows your feet to breath and because they are so light, it feels like you are walking barefoot!

These Ibiza Espadrille Sandals can also be made to order, so if you have a particularly enchanting foot shape or shoe size, please do get in touch before you order.

Available in-store & online Ibiza Espadrille Sandals.

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Come with us on a journey to enjoy vibrant colours, tactile textures, delicious scents and inspiring artistry, all lovingly designed to lift up your senses and spin you around with joy. We’re all about living life, loving laughter and creating the energy of beauty wherever we go.

Meet Victoria Durrer Gasse the Elly founder & curator


My very first visit to Ibiza was with my mother in 1970 and I of course fell hopelessly in love with the island way back then, spending every summer here thereafter. The scent of the pine forests, the sea, the sunsets, the relaxed vibe, the hippies and all the dirt roads really captivated me. Three month long summer holidays were a luxury and when we were lucky enough to come for Easter too, I was just in heaven!

As you can imagine, Ibiza in the ’70s was another world! There were very few tarmac roads, mostly all were dirt roads known as caminos, and as young teenagers we made our way from beaches to nightclubs on funky Mobylette mopeds. Perfect days were spent exploring the islands’ hidden coves with crystal clear waters, swimming with friends at sunset and dancing until dawn at the nightclubs; Pacha and the infamous KU were among our favourites. Sailing to and around Formentera with groups of friends on their boats, teenagers and kids camping on Espalmador, whilst parents slept on the boats enjoying their own parties under the moonlit sky. Memories of those summers are visions of picnics, laughter, music, dancing and my first kiss… all sweet joyous teenage awkwardness touched by salt, sand and the love of this island.

In the late ’90s, my husband François and I decided to move here permanently after our son Emile was born. Finding our dream house, an old finca perched on the top of a hill in Santa Agnes, was the first step to calling Ibiza home and we have never looked back. Using many traditional methods we have slowly renovated our home over the years and there really is nothing I love more than waking up to an incredible sunrise across the valley and taking long, country walks with my family and gorgeous dog Pluto.

I was approached in 2010 by my friend Sharon, owner of the La Galeria Elefante building and we began the journey of turning La Galeria Elefante into the beautiful, museum-like treasure trove that it is today. We recently dissolved our partnership and I am now the sole business owner, working hard with my incredible team to make La Galeria Elefante one of the most inspiring shops on the island to visit.

In business and in my private life I love to travel and so sourcing unique pieces for the shop is almost like a hobby. I am fortunate enough to be able to mix business with pleasure and am able to go to many places where I can explore the terrain of textiles, enjoy great food, cafes, meet new people and walk around and discover local markets. This opens up the doors to finding new NGOs to work with all over the world as collaborations with small businesses and talented artisans are a huge part of what we love to do best.

Winters are spent creating in my studio at home and preparing trips to India and Nepal to work with the NGOs and the Nepalese foundation. In recent years I have also made some amazing work relationships and can now proudly say that many of my Victoria Made With Love & Laughter items have been found in shops we love like Urban Outfitters & John Lewis.