2nd Best national practice and experience from Spain

General information

Name of the good practice: Amarenak
Name of the organisations in charge: Oihane Pardo
Website of the organisation www.amarenak.com
E-mail of the organisation helloiskaixo@amarenak.com
City Donostia-San Sebastian
Country Spain
Year 2016
Length of the project/practice 4 years
Is the project/practice ongoing? YES
Link to the training program www.amarenak.com
Language of the practice/program Spanish, Basque

Presentation/Description of the method

In Amarenak (meaning “from the ones from the mothers” in basque) they work to recover from oblivion the kaiku (a traditional Basque coat in danger of extinction) and other traditional garments and objects and give them a new life through innovation and design. After a crowdfunding campaign, Oihane Pardo (architect) began to design and make the first updated kaiku jackets under three premises that always accompany her: natural fabrics, 0km and limited units. Even today, the kaiku is the hallmark of the company and the one that has allowed them to reach people from more than 15 countries on 3 different continents in just 2 years. They combine modernity and tradition, science and art, heritage and innovation. They work in collaboration with museums, historians, companies, institutions and foundations to find pieces that hide a beautiful story. All ideas would be impossible to carry out without the help of local artisans, weavers, tailors, seamstresses and local workshops. Besides, since October 2017, this project has been carried out in the Kutxa Kultur Enea community, where they work and collaborate with other entrepreneurs of the cultural sector in Gipuzkoa.  

General objectives

To reinvent the traditional Basque shelter, boosting local production and the use of natural and artisanal fabrics.  

Why it has been selected as good practice

The project Amarenak has been selected as a good practice because it is a very personal project carried out by a woman using technologies to spread from the local to the world. Her daring to reinvent a traditional product in danger of extinction is a sign of courage, as she risks with a garment that was used years ago but is hardly known today. Besides, she combines the traditional and the current technologies, using the traditional design but adapting it to materials and elements of the present day, betting at the same time on autochthonous materials and natural fabrics. From a small local project, it has become to an internationally expanding project, with the help, among other things, of new technologies.  

Final comments

It is a perfect example of how even the most traditional thing can be reinvented and with the help of technology spread around the world.