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Image courtesy Vida

SF's Vida is bringing international artists and craftspeople together

Oddly, globalization has made nearly everything look the same. Step into a Starbucks, and you could be in Shanghai, Seattle, or a train in Switzerland. But the impact of global connectivity hasn’t resulted in total homogeneity just yet.

Ecommerce startup VIDA connects far-flung artists and designers with manufacturers and craftspeople to create scarves and tops that are produced through socially-responsible, community building methods.

Launched in November, the San Francisco-based VIDA uses direct-to-fabric digital printing, allowing it to reduce the time it typically takes to create textiles from several months to a matter of minutes. VIDA’s manufacturing operations require no capital investment and are highly scalable.

It also makes for some incredibly unique designs.

“Before we had any real presence online, we were reaching out to designers and artists in regions that we wanted to showcase,” founder and CEO Umaimah Mendhro told us. “It’s really a very diverse set of artists. We have actual watercolor paintings that are then scanned and printed. There are paintings, charcoal sketches, calligraphy, photographs – this is not just fashion designers.”

VIDA offers literacy programs to all its makers, as well as ensuring that all workers earn a fair, living wage.

Currently a team of five, VIDA is hiring for five more open positions in design, engineering, product, and community – get all the details here.

Now go forth (and print different).

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