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Boho Bags sells South and South-east Asian bags, embroidered denim jackets and Thai amulet necklaces.
We have traveled all over Asia and Africa for more than forty years and have assembled a good collection of high quality tribal textiles and artifacts. As well, we have found quite a lot of good suppliers who we know are reliable. We look for bags that are a bit different from most of the tourist trash and we look for good quality and reliable supply.
The bags are made by small production, home based artisans. We try to only buy from families or villages who make the bags themselves and not from middle men, so that as much money as possible reaches the people who need it. We structure our prices so that we make no more than what the artisans make.
There are a lot of old Indian textiles that are starting to become very hard to find. The better quality textiles, those that take long time working by hand, are just not being made, as nobody has the time to create them anymore. There are shops that have stocks of Gujarati embroidery, but they know what they are worth in the west and there are no bargains. Real Phulkaris are already very rare and fetch astronomical prices. The superb detailed geometric embroidery of Barmer, Kathi beadwork from Saurashtra, Kanbi embroidery from Kutch are already on the endangered list and expensive while real Indian Banjarra embroidery is beginning to go the same way.
Most of the bags that we sell are one-offs, you won't see another bag exactly the same, because they are made out of old textiles. While Indian women no longer sit around the campfire and produced amazing embroidery anymore, old textiles that are family heirlooms do get turned into bags still and we are fortunate to have the contacts that let us access these bags, as this quality of bag is never found in tourist shops.
We also buy secondhand denim jackets and then embellish them with textiles from our collection. These pieces can be over 50 years old and as rare as hens' teeth and really make a jacket stand out from the average denim jacket look.
We have always loved antique tribal jewelry and recently we have started making replicas of old Indian, Tibetan, African and Thai necklaces to which we add a Thai amulet from our collection. We look for photos of antique Asian tribal jewellery and recreate them in the same or similar materials, using the antique ones as a guide of how to put the sizes, shapes and kind of stones etc together. Sometimes we alter the size and shape but we always follow the design of the original piece.
The majority of photos on this site (especially the bags made of Indian embroidery) are of the exact bag, not a wholesaler's representative image. Others, like the gorgeous Akha Hill Tribe bags, are made to a pattern but each one is slightly different. This means that for those bags you buy may not look identical to the image, but it will be very similar to it. They are still our images of the bags, but we only photographed one of them, not all twenty that we have in stock!! For bags like that, we warn you in the description. If this worries you, contact us, tell us what bag you are thinking of buying and we'll take a photo and send it to you of the exact bag that you'd get if you did buy it and we'll keep that bag aside for you for a few days. Just email info @ bohobags com au (take out the spaces and make it .com.au)
We are based in Australia, and unfortunately, postage to the USA and Europe is expensive from down under. It's a long way, but fortunately bags don't weigh too much. And the shipping costs are much cheaper than a return flight from London to Bangkok for instance.
For our Australian customers, you'll be glad to know that we don't charge GST. We are new and small so our turnover hasn't hit the threshold. We will have to introduce it as we grow, but for now, no GST.