ceo, founder

Viola Labi

Hi, I’m Viola, the woman blessed to partner with intergenerational basket weaving artisans. As a child, I was first introduced to the arts of textiles, retail, and storytelling by observing my mother and father at their textile boutique in Toronto, Canada. She welcomed and inspired clients with nearly two decades of stories of craftsmanship wrapped in history and cultural legacy.

  • My Professional Experience

    I have over 19 years of invaluable experience working in customer-centric leadership roles in major North American and European retail companies. I have always held a passion for design, which I inherited from my father, and I was obsessed with technical drawings created by him, a retail draftsman.

    I now enjoy working outdoors with skilled textile & basket weavers, under the glorious African sun, or from my office in Toronto, Canada with coconut ice cream close by. These parallel life experiences have connected in such a consistent and beautiful way.

  • THE GENESIS

    In 2017, the company was founded during a personal trip to Ghana. I witnessed my reintroduction to elements of Ghana's time-honored traditions, such as Shea, textile, and basketry production, all at the hands of skilled women Artisans.

    Despite language barriers and unfamiliar surroundings, I felt centred and at home while immersed in these environments. As I developed relationships with these women, they began to share their economic and social opportunities with me, and to be honest, I didn't have the answers, so I simply listened. Their stories provoked me to empathize and also made me acutely aware of the context and my own privilege.

  • WHEN WE WERE WOVEN

    As time passed, I found myself being stitched back together in places I didn't realize needed repair, such as identity, culture, and purpose. Each experience with these women was buoyed by teachings about my ancestry, femininity, and survival. Looking back, these women and I exchanged symbolic knowledge and cultural practices.

  • NOW HERE WE ARE

    Although building this business wasn't intentional, it was written for my path. Now, by God's grace,  my team and I continue to create a brand that strives to make an impact on the lives of our first customer; the Artisan. For years—I developed skills, practiced my craft, and committed myself to build Woven Worldwide and the micro-businesses of the women Artisans that I serve. In unspoken ways, they each teach me about femininity, grace, and sustainability. Our connection is beyond the product and it's been a journey that I would embark upon again and again if given the chance.

Our Pillars

  • High-Quality Craftsmanship

    Our team and artisan partners were hand picked for their knowledge of materials, process, and love of design. We are always happy to share our understanding of our craft, whether you are browsing our website or visiting one of our stockists.

  • Time-Honoured

    Our functional woven basket designs are backed by more than four generations of ancestral craftsmanship. We have direct relationships with these basket weaving families, with whom we partner with four days a week.

  • All Natural

    We only use natural materials to make your woven baskets: straw and water. All woven baskets are handcrafted from a robust, earthy grass to ensure high-quality, and our dyes are free of harmful or dangerous chemicals.

  • Small Batch Production

    Large-scale production in the artisanal arena, places a high demand on artisans to fulfill large orders with short lead times. We feel that this diminishes quality, family time and nothing can compensate for low margins, which result in low quality and imperil a community's social culture.

Our Ethos

The Woven Worldwide ethos

Woven Worldwide has found the balance between processes that enable an unpretentious, democratic luxury - one that seeks to slow the fashion cycle, a luxury that focuses on season less design, origin craftsmanship and works to increase the integrity of our home décor choices and the skilled people who craft them - by working closely with intergenerational, artisan families.

We introduce new products in Autumn in conjunction with the harvest season in Northern Ghana. During this stage, the reeds transforms from fine, pale green, mustard to a raw honey hue into what we all recognize as traditional elephant grass.

We opt to create in small batches, for durability while favouring timeless elements that will add longevity to your home's décor.

Our Sales Channels

  • Business To Business

    We welcome retailers from around the world to #WeaveWithUs. Wholesale orders can be ordered directly through our website by completing the message box below or via our Wholesale Partner Faire. We want to make sure that Woven Worldwide is a good fit for the companies we work with and that our products are represented well. Discover new products while benefiting from perks that reduce the risk of purchasing wholesale while also contributing to the larger social good.

  • Design Trade Program

    We invite architects, set designers, interior designers, realtors and other design professionals to #WeaveWithUs and create high-quality products for both residential and commercial properties.

Press

Media

  • Press

    Would you like to write something about Woven Worldwide? Great, we love to hear it. Please reach out first so we can explain the context in which we work, the strength of our team's cultural plurality & our vision for 2023!

  • Basketry Photos

    A good story needs a good picture. Once you agree to our terms, you’ll be automatically redirected to a Google Drive folder of image assets from Woven Worldwide.

  • Contributions, Podcasts

    Woven Worldwide founder, Viola Labi is known for her views on fashion, retail and social impact. She also shares her evolving input on issues impacting artisan communities in Ghana through her networks.

Kind Words From Our Customers

" Incredibly impressed with the quality and beauty of these baskets. Love the stacking options and sizing. The fulfillment was quick and arrived quickly. Our customers loved these and we will be re-ordering shortly. "

Alina (WKND)

" Perfection! The care and attention that has gone into every item I've ordered is unparalleled. These are some of the most beautiful products I've seen. "

Jennifer - Osisi Boutique

Connect With Us

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Quick view
Round Bolga Market Basket
Regular price
$69.00
Regular price
Sale price
$69.00

More Information About Woven Worldwide To Explore

  • High-Quality Products

    Our team and artisan partners were hand picked for their knowledge of materials, process, and love of design. We are always happy to share our extensive knowledge and understanding of our craft, whether you are browsing our website or visiting one of our stockists.

  • Community Approach

    We have direct relationships with fourth-generation basket weaving families that partner with us four days a week, allowing both parents to be present in the home to sustain communities.

  • Corporate Social Responsibility

    Our basket weaving training standardizes production in an informal market while also providing artisan leaders with tools, resources, and innovative methods to preserve and improve heritage techniques.