Working With Indigenous Designs

When you slide into one of our new lightweight Janu shirts, or cool off in a Chain Reaction Godnas Tank, you’re participating in a creative act, in more ways than one. The patterns on these items tell a story—and your participation in it gives back to artisans who then have the chance to share their skills with the next generation.

The patterns on these products are brought to you through a new partnership we’re really excited about. We’re working with an organization called Roots Studio to lease patterns from indigenous artists. And we're bringing even more rad patterns to you this spring—in both shirts and hats.

Indigenous tribes in rural India have been creating art for thousands of years, but only recently has this art been made available to widespread communities. For the last three seasons, we’ve partnered with Roots Studio to bring this art to life in some of our best-selling outdoor products.

We chose to work with Roots Studio because they lease this artwork directly from indigenous artists to brands like us in the U.S. This allows us to support the artists through a business partnership so that they can continue to grow their supplies, share their stories, and thrive as members of a global economy.

By purchasing a Roots Collaboration product, you’re supporting a sustainable livelihood that brings a stream of revenue to these artists rather than a one-time sale. You are also furthering the reach of global trade with a community that would otherwise be isolated, and celebrating the talent of these artists.

The Godnas Print

The Gondi people make up one of the largest tribal groups in India, largely hailing from Madhya Pradesh. Their paintings, known as Godnas, were formerly tattoos that were passed down matrilineally. They have been used as a way to record history, decorate the walls and floors of their houses, and as a form of respect and reverence for the spirits that inhabit their natural surroundings.

The print on the women's Chain Reaction Tank comes from Madhubani, a small village in northern Bihar where the women paint the Mithila, which is based off of Godnas, translating in hindi to tattoos.

The Sanjay and Janu Prints

The Warli Tribe has been creating art for thousands of years in Maharashtra, India. But with urbanization, only a few Warli artists remain. Their depictions and motifs are strongly rooted into their agrarian way of life, depicting traditional fables, rituals, and daily life.

The Janu and Sanjay designs were created by artists from the Warli tribe in rural India.