We live life wrapped in cloth
It serves as shelter, comfort and individual expression. 

LEILA ATELIER is based on the belief that cloth should be both beautiful and practical, filling our daily lives with sparks of beauty, joy and connection: to our history, our environment and our selves. 

And so we weave this dream into being

Our textiles are crafted using locally sourced, natural fibers and time honoured craft techniques. We focus on tactility and the sensory experience above all, embedding the human hand deeply into all that we make.

Our design process is approached as a conversation between material and medium, guided by intuition and expertise to create unique textile products which tune in to the nature of the cloth, elevated by finish & perfectly suited to their intended use.

Our designs are informed by the raw materials available to us locally, using predominantly South African grown & spun cotton which is hand dyed in Cape Town using environmentally considerate practices, as well as locally sourced mohair, merino wool and other vintage natural fibres.

Process is central to our design and craft practice. Rather than concealing the events of the process we choose to use the materials & skills locally available to us to inform our unique designs.

In this way we celebrate the inimitable texture of hand craft cloth as both object and archive, embracing the wabi wabi approach of idiosyncratic perfection.

We look to nature & traditional craft for inspiration, particularly materials, patterns and structures which have stood the test of time to create timeless textiles which enrich contemporary living with a deeply resonant simplicity.

SERVICES

As a small creative studio, we love to craft unique pieces which elevate sensory experience, spreading beauty, love & comfort.

Interiors are our passion and we love crafting bespoke collections for both residential and hospitality. Please get in touch to enquire about our trade offerings.

Original Artwork is primary focus of the studio.
Crafting unique woven & other textile works for specific spaces in order to elevate or evoke sensory experiences is always an absolute joy.
Please get in touch to request a catalogue of work & set up an in studio consultation should you wish to commission a special piece for your space.

Throughout human history, textiles have always been a deeply sentimental heirloom, playing an important role in cultural ceremony. We have been honoured with commissions for matrimonial and baby blankets and love to contribute to marking significant occasions.

If you've got an idea that needs a special textile element, we'd love to discuss collaborating on making your tactile dreams material.

LEILA ATELIER began as Crosspolynations in 2018 as a means to craft a life and business with purpose, which fostered connection and a means of ethically aligned creative expression.

By delving deep into the history of textiles and the craftspeople who make them while on an extended trip to India in 2018, I became entirely enraptured with cloth and the stories it carries. 

The weaving of cloth by hand is an ancient, rich and beautiful history which dates as far and wide as humans ourselves. The brand was started as a space to explore and celebrate this legacy. Its first iteration was an instagram page and then a Wordpress blog to archive & share my experiences researching & exploring these traditions physically in India. When I returned to South Africa I continued by digitally researching & writing about traditional textiles African.

In early 2020 I began weaving lessons in Cape Town, an activity which I dedicated almost my entire Coronavirus lockdown sabbatical to. In July of the same year I purchased my first floor loom and dedicated an unimaginable amount of hours, days, months to learning the craft, developing textiles with integrity and then products which would be both desirable & useful.

As the world re-emerged to some semblance of the before, I decided to throw all caution to the wind, making a break from my previous career as an art director in the film industry and giving my all to the burgeoning passion of materialising a life surrounded by beautiful, resonant textiles.

Over the next couple of years I've outgrown my studio several times, employed a studio assistant and then trained her to weave, built up a network of incredible clients and begun collaborating with other local Handweavers to craft products through which we hope to share the beauty of this craft, and the deep love that resonates in it.

The studio is quickly evolving and expanding to encompass our vast love of textiles and the various manifestations through which they can serve to express unique beauty, craft connection, elevate sensory experience and spread natural, simple joy.

Thank you for joining us on the journey,

with love, Leila

  • Column V

    Column V

    The column series is a meditation on cloth as a source of grounding, of balance and of structure. An interplay between ephemeral lightness and a stable framework of support, of...

    Column V

    The column series is a meditation on cloth as a source of grounding, of balance and of structure. An interplay between ephemeral lightness and a stable framework of support, of...

  • The Altar Throw

    The Altar Throw

    The Altar is an instant classic, featuring a timeless, minimal grid design which is perfectly suited to contemporary style. She features a playful threaded pattern repeat which fills in blocks in...

    The Altar Throw

    The Altar is an instant classic, featuring a timeless, minimal grid design which is perfectly suited to contemporary style. She features a playful threaded pattern repeat which fills in blocks in...

  • The Temple Throw

    The Temple Throw

    The Temple Throw is our medium weight 100% cotton, handwoven throw blanket, Elevate your bedroom sanctuary with this exquisite 100% cotton handwoven throw. Luxuriously designed to promote relaxation, comfort, and grounding.Woven...

    The Temple Throw

    The Temple Throw is our medium weight 100% cotton, handwoven throw blanket, Elevate your bedroom sanctuary with this exquisite 100% cotton handwoven throw. Luxuriously designed to promote relaxation, comfort, and grounding.Woven...

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STUDIO JOURNAL

  • Decorex JRNL : Crafting Connection Through Cloth

    Decorex JRNL : Crafting Connection Through Cloth

    A huge thank you to Decorex for featuring Crosspolynations in the 2022 edition of JRNL, the digital directory featuring the latest trends, insights, contacts and ideas in the decor and...

    Decorex JRNL : Crafting Connection Through Cloth

    A huge thank you to Decorex for featuring Crosspolynations in the 2022 edition of JRNL, the digital directory featuring the latest trends, insights, contacts and ideas in the decor and...

  • Loom Number Two!

    Loom Number Two!

    At the end of 2021 I decided I wanted to be the kind of person who sets goals. I took a week off over the end of the year and...

    Loom Number Two!

    At the end of 2021 I decided I wanted to be the kind of person who sets goals. I took a week off over the end of the year and...

  • WELCOME TO OUR NEW HOME | THE PALMS

    WELCOME TO OUR NEW HOME | THE PALMS

    Packing up and relocating is never an easy move to make, but when its time to do so, there’s simply nothing to do but to get down to it!

    WELCOME TO OUR NEW HOME | THE PALMS

    Packing up and relocating is never an easy move to make, but when its time to do so, there’s simply nothing to do but to get down to it!

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TEXTILE STORIES

  • BAULE KITA OF COTE D’IVOIRE : The Strip Woven Handloom Textile of central Cote D’Ivoire

    BAULE KITA OF COTE D’IVOIRE : The Strip Woven H...

    On a chance visit to my favorite store in Cape Town’s Famous Kalk Bay – Unesandla Crafts located inside the Indoor Market I fell involve with a cloth which once...

    BAULE KITA OF COTE D’IVOIRE : The Strip Woven H...

    On a chance visit to my favorite store in Cape Town’s Famous Kalk Bay – Unesandla Crafts located inside the Indoor Market I fell involve with a cloth which once...

  • The Charkha: A Project for Heart Change

    The Charkha: A Project for Heart Change

    A Handloom project from the desert of North Western India which aims to promote ancient wisdom and spread ideology of decentralization through social enterprise

    The Charkha: A Project for Heart Change

    A Handloom project from the desert of North Western India which aims to promote ancient wisdom and spread ideology of decentralization through social enterprise

  • BOGOLANFINI – MALI’S MUD CLOTH

    BOGOLANFINI – MALI’S MUD CLOTH

    Commonly known as Mud cloth, the Bogolan cloth or Bogolanfini is a mud resist dyed cotton cloth produced by the women of the Bambara of Mali. The literal translation is:...

    BOGOLANFINI – MALI’S MUD CLOTH

    Commonly known as Mud cloth, the Bogolan cloth or Bogolanfini is a mud resist dyed cotton cloth produced by the women of the Bambara of Mali. The literal translation is:...

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