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About

Our mission is to make it easy for you to purchase wholesale quantities of high quality, ethically made, customized sewn goods. In pursuit of a more just world, we employ women in need and when possible use other social enterprises, natural fibers, recycled, organic, or otherwise eco-friendly inputs.

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MEET THE TEAM

SWEATSHOP FREE LABOR

Our employees are paid fairly, regularly, and given the opportunity to earn raises + promotions. Unfortunately, this is rare throughout most of India. Sweatshops are all too common, and 85-90% of sweatshop employees are women. As such, in 2013 women still only earned 62 percent of a men’s salary for equal work. WORK+SHELTER is working to change that!

Theresa Vandermeer

A tech-loving social entrepreneur, Theresa identifies deeply with the Horace Mann quote “Be ashamed to die until you have won some victory for humanity.” As a University of Michigan-funded researcher, she worked to understand how economic empowerment transforms women’s lives. When not in the entrepreneur hustle, T can be found exercising her champion sleeping abilities at less-than-ideal places like Burning Man + compulsively reading The New York Times, including her favorite column “Modern Love.”

CHOOSE CHANGE

We take great care to minimize our impact on the Earth by reusing fabric scraps to reduce waste, consolidating shipments when possible to minimize our carbon footprint, and sourcing organic materials from providers who are equally eco-conscious in running their businesses. The level of how "green" a business is highly depends on how it's managed — everything from materials, energy and workflow. DID YOU KNOW? The U.S. alone produces 11 million tons of textile waste per year. That's 400% more than just 2 decades ago! Thus, mass production of goods needs to be done carefully, which is why we take an eco-friendly approach to offering wholesale quantities.

Ritu Marwari

From managing Quality Control to leading our fabulous ladies in computer training, Ritu is always on top of her game. She proudly holds a degree in Fashion Design, has 12 years of working experience + her amazing work speaks for itself! When not at W+S, she can be found trying her hand at new stitching techniques or spending quality time with her adorable daughter Rudhrakshi.

HEALTHY WORKPLACE

The women we employ work a maximum of 8 hours per day, work in a comfortable environment, and take delicious chai breaks twice daily! We encourage our employees and trainees to pursue health, prosperity, and their dreams.

Shivani Goel

As Senior Merchandiser at New Delhi’s second largest garment export house for 8 years, Shivani is well known for her unbelievable management skills and irresistibly pleasant personality. When she’s not busy running our New Delhi operations, this sweet mama is probably out shopping + chasing her adorable troublemaking son Sahanjh.

EMPOWERED WOMEN

WORK+SHELTER combines the power of community, positivity, and inspiration to create a truly aspirational workplace. But our reach isn’t limited to the workplace; we are often instrumental in supporting our employees in various ways. For example, we may ensure that an employee’s children are enrolled in school and are receiving proper healthcare, or support our employees towards pursuing their own entrepreneurial venture.

Amanda Dye

As a former Offshore Operations Specialist with Publicis + having run her own Spanish translation business for 10 years, working internationally and cross-culturally is Amanda’s cup of chai. When she isn’t number crunching, invoicing, and tracking cash flow for Work + Shelter, Amanda loves dancing.

OPPORTUNITY TO GROW

By building on our leadership team’s diverse backgrounds in technology, manufacturing, design, finance, and operations, we’re using our expertise to create a new workforce of empowered women. These women are independent, constantly learning, digitally adept, and financially savvy.

Allyson Dykhuizen

Allyson Dykhuizen is a knitwear designer and knitting teacher living in Chicago. When she's not managing sales for WORK+SHELTER she's knitting and sewing up a storm in order to make her wardrobe 100% handmade.

U.S. + GLOBAL TEAM

Our global team is always available for you in several time zones, including on the ground in the U.S. We marry the humanity of small-scale production with the efficiency & quality of large-scale production. To make the manufacturing process as easy as possible for our clients, we source fabric (especially GOTS Certified Organic Cotton), notions, and packaging for each order. Our resourcefulness and connections with a variety of vendors in India provide you with sourcing options that are otherwise unaccessible. Because of our extensive + varied experience, we have the ability to source material from traditional + alternative sources including low-impact fiber producers, such as jute manufacturers + even hand-woven fibers from other social benefit organizations. We work with great vendors that screen print, digitally print or naturally-dye fabrics in-house. We personally source vendors and oversee their work so our clients don’t have to. Why oversee vendor and materials sourcing? We want to make it as easy as possible for you to work with us!

Nitu Choudhary

Nitu is an Ex-Engineer turned artist, a.k.a amateur writing enthusiast! She has obsessions for Landon Carter, over-sized outfits, journals and jhumkas. If not busy strategizing a new W+S Project/Tracker, she may be caught decorating walls with crazy stuff or working for social causes...+ she won't shut up about her best friend Kamna Negi.

ECO-FRIENDLY EQUALITY

In pursuit of a more just world, we employ women in need and when possible use other social enterprises, natural fibers, recycled, organic, or otherwise eco-friendly inputs. We believe manufacturing can be simultaneously efficient, environmentally friendly, and ethically fair. We know that we are operating within a broader global context and an ecological environment that is precariously placed, so do our best to limit our impact in running our business - whether it be through reducing waste or using more eco-friendly materials. In following with our beliefs, we apply Lean manufacturing principles to our workplace, and think critically about how we manage our material scraps. Our high-end production equipment and quality control process ensure that our end products meet robust quality standards.

Britani Hutchinson

Brit is a Designer-Seamstress + English Teacher from Chicago gone Globe-trotter. When not marketing + freelancing from the nearest cafe, you can find her volunteering + cartwheeling wherever she is in the world.

PAID TRANING

We focus on women’s empowerment and poverty alleviation by providing Indian women with fair-trade work. At W+S New Delhi, women are entered into our paid training program where we teach them the skills to create high-quality products for the export market. The only entry prerequisite we have is demonstrated economic need. When the woman completes training and begins to produce, we increase her pay. Because many of the women that work with us never finished school, our job training in sewing and production management provides them with the means to find dignified work they otherwise wouldn’t have access to.

Tuna Vandermeer

Our main source of inspiration + style icon, Tuna is responsible for all the positivity we maintain at W+S. When not working to keep spirits high, she can be found lounging + enjoying the side of milk with our chai.