What is the Anat team like?
Our team is dynamic, creative, and diverse, with many nationalities coming together to make it all work. Anat was founded by Salma Shawa, alongside her mother, Muna Masri, who is the lead fashion designer. The garments are sown in the only denim factory (Hassan Shehadeh and Brothers) in Gaza, Palestine.
The embroidery designs are made by the very talented Muna, originally from the West Bank, who envisions the colors and patterns in her head, then executes the design on a garment by explaining her vision to women and men embroiderers in Gaza City. The embroiderers, who work at Inas Skaik Embroidery Center, intricately hand-make every single stitch on each piece of clothing. Inas Skaik has played a tremendous role in the process of manufacturing, as she connects us to embroiderers in the first place. Faysal Shawa, our biggest supporter and mastermind of our beyond gender vision, is in charge of our local business operations.
Nothing would be possible without our creative media team that brings everything together to make our vision come to life. Anat's lead graphic designer is Nora Jebara, who is also in charge of our social media platforms. Our creative directors are Salma and Padmini Dey, while Anat's photographer is Jehanzeb Shakoor. Our website developers are Diana Tarazi and Mahmoud Shurrab, and our models are Hala Shawa, Ghazi Shawa, Padmini Dey, and Asem Wajjeh.
Basically, our startup consists of a network of talented and creative people from the US, Palestine, and Sweden (hopefully many more will join us in the future!) coming together to make our vision materialize. Not only do we aim to transcend borders, but we are already doing so starting with our diverse team. After all, embroidery should be enjoyed by all and is made for all!
What is your shipping process?
The shipping process is extremely difficult and costly, especially given that our garments are shipped from Gaza, which has been under an Israeli military blockade for more than ten years. This means that constant border closures, trade restrictions, and export limitations have become the norm in Gaza, unfortunately. Exporting overseas is made hard due to the many checkpoints that products have to pass on their journey from Gaza, as well as limits on the types of things that can be exported.
As a result, exporting from Gaza to the world is an expensive and timely process. However, the Anat team does its best to deliver all shipments to our customers, worldwide, as we know our customers are patient enough and can understand the situation. We hope that this shipping process, with all its intricacies and obstacles, will not be seen as just a shipping process, but a bit beyond that. Specifically, we hope the shipping process sheds light on the unjust blockade of the Gaza Strip and also contribute to a better understanding of the clothes we put on our bodies and what it takes to make and deliver them.