Type of business: Contemporary accessories made from handwoven traditional ikat Founder: Franki Turner
Who knew that traditional fabrics like ikat and songket had such illustrious well-travelled histories? Well, Franki knows all about this because she has made it her mission to not only create beautiful accessories using these fabrics, but to immerse herself in their heritage and to know exactly where they come from and whose hands weave it. If that isn’t commitment to a product, what is?
Ikat is a type of fabric found in the areas of Southeast Asia to Central Asia and even South America. It’s versatile, unique and, more importantly, tells the story of its origins and the culture of the people who weave it. It has officially become a cool print, seen on everything from cushion covers to swimsuits and designer clothes. But the original fabric is hand-woven using organically dyed cotton or silk thread and has nothing to do with mass production. And Frankitas is a brand that celebrates this.
Yet another mum with a corporate background who decided to pursue her love of fashion and fabrics, Franki (a kampung girl at heart) grew up in Indonesia and has always loved the textiles of her childhood. The main reason she started her own business was to have the control and the freedom of how she divided her time between three children, her husband and work. In the beginning Franki struggled to balance her efforts, but after a steep learning curve, she focused on creating a solid structure and routine at home, which was imperative for time management (that again!).
The mainstays of her collection are various designs of clutches complemented by travel bags, scarfs and jewellery in vivid shades showcasing the inimitable patterns that are unique to traditional woven fabric. What makes Frankitas special is the pride and respect to the artisans each piece embodies, which is a rare quality in a world of mass production.
When asked what advice she would have for a potential mumpreneur, Franki had this to say, ‘Follow your passion, come out of your comfort zone and take risks.’