When Arrecife was born in 2019, I was relatively inexperienced in the textile and fashion industry. While I had heard about labor exploitation in the field, I had never been so intimately acquainted with it. As an Industrial Engineer, I never imagined that I would personally witness it. However, the early days of Arrecife brought me face to face with this reality. 

In our quest to find the right product-market fit for Arrecife, we contracted a company to manufacture 70 swimsuits, which marked the beginning of our journey. Due to a series of events during the production process, I found myself making frequent visits to the factory, working closely with the person crafting these swimsuits. It was during one of these visits, amid frustration and tears, that this person stood up and told me that it wasn't fair to make 70 swimsuits for a payment of $0.20 each. Those words struck me profoundly, and it was at that moment that I truly comprehended the pervasive nature of labor exploitation in the industry—a harsh reality for many individuals worldwide involved in clothing production.

Following that eye-opening experience, I made a solemn commitment to myself that Arrecife would never be a part of this problem. On the contrary, we would become a driving force in the fight against it. So, as soon as I realized the potential that Arrecife held, I took a significant step. I purchased the first sewing machines and hired the first seamstress in Colombia. We took full responsibility for the machinery and paid her a wage significantly higher than the industry average.
Our atelier gradually grew, evolving into a division of Arrecife that now supports over 15 individuals. These are people with dreams and incredible life projects, and some of them have stories that are deeply moving, set against the backdrop of an exploitative and unjust industry. Over time, these stories transformed into my motivation and the driving force behind advancing this project. It became a means to change the future of these individuals and contribute to their personal development.

People that have stories that range from the joy of Gloria's daughter getting into university to the anxiety we felt when sales were at an all-time low during the pandemic, and we had to support our team. There are also stories of deep sadness, like the loss of a team member who left an indelible mark on our workshop's history. All these stories have bound us together within Arrecife and have transformed our brand into what it is today. Everything we've achieved is thanks to the support of each and every one of them.
Four years have elapsed since Arrecife's inception, and I've decided to embark on one of the most significant campaigns on a personal level. It fills me with immense pride and satisfaction because it allows me to showcase to everyone who has supported the brand, in one way or another, what truly lies at the heart of Arrecife. Who we are, why we do what we do, and the dreams of each of these individuals. Everyone who supports Arrecife is also supporting the dreams of these remarkable people.

Now, in every Arrecife garment you purchase, you'll discover the tag of love—a label bearing a QR code that will take you directly to the story of the person who crafted that garment. You'll have the opportunity to delve into the dreams and individual projects that your purchase is supporting. 

From the depths of my heart,

Meet all the team ♥