About Escama Studio
Escama Studio is a sustainable fashion brand based in California and Brazil. Our mission is to create innovative on-trend fashion accessories while promoting sustainable development through trade.
The word 'Escama' means 'fish scales' in Portuguese; the name was chosen because our flagship product -- crocheted accessories with post consumer pull tabs -- appear as if they're made from big metallic scales of a fish.
To achieve our unique aesthetic, the Escama Studio team adapted traditional Brazilian crochet work and imbued the handmade crafts with a modern design sense and new materials. With designs originating from both San Francisco and Brazil, the pop top bags are handmade in Brazil by artisan groups who are not just contract manufacturers, but an integral part of Escama Studio.
Escama Studio is a green company, a fair trade company and an ongoing experiment in sustainability. We measure our success by the strength of our partnerships with producers in underprivileged communities and by the sense of wonder that our products bring to our fans worldwide. We are all sincerely grateful for every customer who loves these handbags and supports this venture.
Escama Studio Team
My name is Andy Krumholz. I'm from Ohio and since an early age I've been fascinated by foreign cultures. Throughout school I did miserably in languages but for some reason I had a knack for Mandarin and I ended up spending 14 years in Taiwan. I've always liked Bossa Nova music and in 2002 I decided to take a long awaited trip to Brazil. It was there that I saw the traditional handicraft of crochet-with-tabs and from the moment I saw it I knew that I wanted to somehow adapt this traditional craft for the average consumer. With very little experience in business and no clue about handbags I ran around in circles for about sixteen months but with the help of Socorro, Eric, Ryan and the women in the cooperatives, we now have the beginnings of something really great. I'm amazed to see how much we've accomplished so far and I can't wait to see what happens next.
Sandra Pereira Leal
My name is Sandra Pereira Leal. When my sister, Socorro returned to Brazil several years ago I had my first visit to the artisan groups. Being in the company of these women, getting to know their faces, looks, aspirations, I feel that there is something really genuine, something that almost brings me back to my childhood. As curious an observer that I am, I knew then that I would be involved in some capacity with this project. This exchange is absolutely fantastic. Every day is exciting, intense and challenging. Today, I am helping with the production process all the way to the final destination. I am fully dedicated and committed, and that makes me very happy and truly proud.
Socorro Leal Schwiderski
My name is Socorro Leal Schwiderski. Born and raised in Brasília, Brazil, where I enjoyed a fun childhood and a family that helped me see beauty in things that are sometimes unseen and to appreciate values that are sometimes forgotten. For that I am truly thankful. Life has been a wonderful journey. I played volleyball for fun for most of my younger years and later on I received an athletic scholarship and attended Brigham Young University in Provo, Utah. I lived in San Francisco – moved back to Brazil – and returned again to the Bay Area, and that’s where the Escama Studio journey began. I believe that everyone is capable of changing or touching someone's life. Just look them in the eye. I feel that everyone deserves a chance, respect and the opportunity to be included in a society. The women in the cooperatives might think that they have gotten something from us at Escama Studio, but I think the contrary. I have witnessed, first hand, what makes someone strong, hopeful and resilient. All of that is in their faces, in their everyday lives. I am the one that has been gifted!
I'm Eric Pedersen. I am a graphic artist and web developer by trade. I moved from Minneapolis to San Francisco in 1999 where I met Andy working at an Internet startup. While at the startup, I became interested in international commerce and the politics of international trade and development. When Andy came back from Brazil with a bag made from the recycled tabs I knew I had to jump aboard and see where this could go. To hear the stories and see the enthusiasm of both the women who make them from our customers has been incredibly rewarding. Thank you all.
Escama Studio Contributors
My name is Cadu Andrade - a young and passionate photographer working in Brazil. I graduated from UNIP 2011 in Marketing and Advertisement and that is when I fell in love with photography. I currently work in the music scene and was in credited in 2012 as one of the best photographers in Brazil by the “Fotografe uma Idéia” magazine. In addition to taking pictures in the local music industry, I am also partner-founder of the video production company “Skull Foto em Movimento”, acting as a producer, director and photography manager.
Meu nome é Cadu Andrade – um jovem e apaixonado fotógrafo que trabalha no Brasil. Sou formado em Marketing e Propaganda pela faculdade UNIP em 2011, onde nasceu meu amor pela fotografia. Trabalho atualmente como fotógrafo na área musical, sendo eleito em 2012 um dos melhores do Brasil pela revista “Fotografe uma Idéia”. Além de fotografar as bandas da cena brasiliense, sou também sócio-fundador da produtora de vídeos “Skull Foto em Movimento”, atuando como produtor-diretor e diretor de fotografia.