I have always had a connection with Turkey, my husband is Turkish and our wedding was as Turkish as you can get! Think henna on the hands, being carried to the groom by chair, lots of jewellery and lots and lots of dancing in circles and singing. I love the way the Turkish people enjoy life, they will dance at any chance (even before a drink!) inbetween courses in a restaurant, in the middle of the day, with no inhibitions and nothing stops them! They also have all kinds of cute sayings for which there is no English equivalent, especially about love.
It was during one of our visits to Istanbul to visit family, that we saw the towels and brought some back for friends, this grew very quickly into the business we have today. Initially we were buying from wholesalers but once our orders started to grow, we decided to fly to the weaving heart of Turkey and see the manufacturing process for ourselves.
It was very interesting to visit the families who still weave towels by hand using traditional wooden shuttled looms passed down through the generations. These looming ladies have been working their machines all their lives, the looms are part of the house and it’s truly amazing to witness their way of life.
Of course not all towels are made by hand, in fact most of the hamams are made by semi-automatic machines and finished off by hand. The tassels cannot be made by a machine and these are all individually platted and rolled, I will show this on one of my instagram videos, it’s one of those skills that looks so easy but takes ages to learn properly – bit like playing backgammon I might add!
Currently we are selling the towels on our website and at various fairs around Hong Kong, we will post these fairs in advance on the facebook page so it’s good to follow us for the latest news. I do not have a shop and therefore can keep the prices as low as possible, shop rents are expensive and I’m lucky enough that I can store the towels at my office with no overheads. Sometimes people ask if they can drop by the office in Wanchai to see the towels and this is always a pleasure, everyone is welcome but we don’t have the towels nicely displayed like a store, they are mostly in bulk packaging and you have to rummage around to find what you like but that’s half the fun, right! Come with a friend and have a cup of tea and take your time. I’ve also got a nice selection of lovely evil eye jewellery at amazingly low prices, I don’t have any pieces on the website so it’s a good opportunity to see it in person if you are looking for a nice gift.
To round things up I’d like to thank all my customers for your support, it’s been so enjoyable getting to meet new people and bring a bit of Turkey into your lives. In Turkey we say Gel Bir Çay İçelim which means 'come let's sit down, have some tea and let's do some business!'.