Irene, chick(en) and proud shepherd of her herd; Gerard, COWorker and handybully, but most of all, dad of the chick; Ralph, rockgoat & arty farty; Barbara, our illustration fairy and as sweet as lamb; Fleur, dazzling poet donkey; Sam, yarn magician with horsepower; Koen, works like a beaver, sleeps like a bear and Bien, our Dalai Lama of social media.
The Sukha’s birds: Margareth, our busy dove; Nike, our smiley tomtit; Wies, our fluttering suskin; Hanna, our sweet robin; Trijn, our super friendly sparrow; Vivian, our shiny nightingale and Sandra, our picturesque bullfinch.
Sukha, joy of life
Sukha means ‘joy of life’ in Sanskrit. And that is exactly what we are about. Sukha is a place where beautiful things are conceived, developed and created. We stand for sustainable production and take great care in selecting unique items that are handmade from natural materials and are often locally designed. Everything we do is done with a great deal of attention and consideration, always with a twinkle in our eye and, above all, joy of life.
Sukha is a cosy little department store in the heart of Amsterdam. Everything we sell – from fashion to furniture and from accessories to art – comes with a complementary dose of Sukha, which is the Sanskrit word for ‘joy of life’. We’ve carefully selected the most beautifully handmade items for our shop: luxurious woollen scarves, wraps and cardigans, soft leather bags, jewellery, cushions, blankets, and much more. We hope you will be enchanted by the wonderful world of Sukha as soon as you walk through our door.
We see Sukha as an extended family: our in-store staff, our illustrator, the designers, our poet-in-residence and of course, our production teams. In fact, the people in India and Nepal who make our own Atelier Sukha fashion and home accessories are at the very heart of the Sukha family. Our goal is to provide them with a fair and stable income and a solid base for the future. Sam IJsbrandy spends half of her time living and working with them, perfecting the techniques and patterns for our designs and producing quality handmade items that you will cherish for years.
Having worked with beautiful, good-quality, natural products for many years, we felt that launching our own label was the logical next step. The clothes, furniture and accessories that we produce under the Atelier Sukha label are made of pure, natural materials like wood, wool, linen, cotton, lokta and cashmere. Our clothes and accessories will make you feel at home wherever you are in the world. And because of the timeless designs and the superior quality of the materials we use, you will enjoy them for many years.
That’s why our clothes collection doesn’t necessarily change with the season. Instead, we listen to our customers’ (and our own) needs and wishes, and then start sketching, discussing, designing and producing. That way our own collection grows organically. And because we use natural, high-quality materials our clothes age beautifully, they are highly versatile and they can be adapted to suit any season or occasion. Our woollen cardigans, for example, are great in winter in front of a roaring fire but also make a wonderful spring coat or a cosy wrap-around blanket on long flights.
We find it important that the Atelier Sukha range is ethically and sustainably made, so we are involved in the production process from start to finish. Not only do we source the materials ourselves, we also work closely with the local communities that produce our designs: our soft woollen scarves are knitted by Nepalese women whilst the men make sturdy wooden daybeds, and our gorgeous cotton and linen tops are handmade by women in India. By providing them with a regular and fair income, we aim to create a better life for themselves and their families.
Sukha works very closely and on the ground with Nepalese craftswomen giving them a sustainable base of income that empowers them to take care of their families. Yet there are many deprived children, often without parents, that break our hearts every time we are in Nepal. Sukha foundation tries to take care of some these children by financing their education and accommodation. We also donate funds to the orphanage where our supported children live and learn. The board of Sukha Foundation works pro bono, 98% of the funds the Foundation receives are spend directly on the children.
Irene Mertens & Sam IJsbrandy