Saturday, February 10, 2007

Hiromi De-zines

Originally uploaded by dalbhat.
Our friend Hiromi was visiting for about three weeks in Jan-Feb.

She is a member of the Bean Cooking Club at Rakutendo (, an organization/shop in Kyoto, Japan that promotes vegetarianism by cooking and eating beans. They study bean recipes from around the world and distribute recipes and bean-spice kits each month to members.

Recently Mustard Seeds accomplished a neat project with Jeevika Development Society, a women's skill-training project, and Rakutendo. They developed a pot cover that not only keeps food warm but allows you to take beans off the gas burner earlier and keep the cooking going for the last 15 minutes under the pot cover.

Sooooo...if 100 people save 15 minutes of gas every time they cook, it really adds up. I like that we were able to develop a product that isn't just something to buy, but something that also protects the environment!

The pot covers are made of handloom kesh made by the Tagore Society in Santiniketan. Old sarees are woven into new thread to create incredible, completely unique patterns. Each label, a little smiling bean (the group's motto is "All we are saying is Give Beans a Chance..."), is hand-embroidered by Jeevika, along with all the sewing on the cover itself. You can see a photo of the Nabe Cover on the Rakutendo website!

They are just completing the second order of 100 pieces to sell in collaboration with WWF in Japan!

Here, Hiromi is designing the next product, a spice holder for members to keep their spice packets (which they receive each month with their Bean Cooking Kits) neatly in their kitchens. These wall pocket pouches will use jute and hand-woven khadi...and will of course have the smiling bean on the side!

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