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New Design Store Showcases Handmade Wares from Around the World

Each one tells a story

There’s a certain pleasure in telling the tale of a well-loved object, particularly if it’s also a beautiful one. But few of us have turned that kind of storytelling into a business. Jessica Macias and Ana Caufman, founders of the new story-driven design store Maison Numen, do just that.

For their first collection of sustainable, fair trade wares, the pair traveled across Venezuela, Mexico, Guatemala, Peru, and Colombia to meet directly with designers and artisans. At each studio, Macias and Caufman documented the origin stories and production processes of the objects chosen for the collection.

The Maison Numen site is brimming with rich details and cultural context—from an article on the cultural lineage of Talavera pottery to a discussion of traditional Guatemalan embroidery.

And the goods are gorgeous, too.

The shop focuses mainly on unique housewares—ceramics, rugs, trays, and lamps. Some are traditional designs created by indigenous artisans, others are created with more modern techniques. But all of the items are firmly rooted to a local place or culture, whether it’s in the native clay used to make a minimalist cutlery set or a weaving technique that’s been passed down through generations.

Maison Numen’s first collection, Latin Animae Vol 1, will be followed in September by Latin Animae Vol 2. Macias and Caufam are also working on a European collection and have lately been admiring England’s ceramics and pottery. You can be sure they’ll have a story to tell.