What is Inabel?
Uniquely designed textiles that have been handwoven using traditional looms by expert artisans of the Ilocos region in northern Philippines.
What makes Inabel Shop products unique?
Our products are all handmade in the Philippines and they stand out for the following reasons:
- An enduring indigenous tradition: Inabel products start with textiles that have been crafted from centuries-old designs and patterns, which are rooted to the lives and surroundings of the weavers of the Ilocos region. Read our blog on how these designs are “Inspired by Life”; and
- Our focus on offering quality over quantity. The Inabel weaving process - from design concept to execution using wooden pedal looms - is cumbersome and painstaking, making mass production impossible. Thus, from the limited artisan output, we select a subset of products based on the quality of craftsmanship, design, and functionality. In the end, we have a collection of limited-edition products that are distinctive, well-made, and useful.
How often do you get new products?
At least once a year, we travel to the Ilocos region to visit with our weaving partners and look for distinctive and functional Inabel products. During our visits, we also take the opportunity to discuss product ideas and quality improvements with the artisans based on customer product feedback. Like our artisan partners, we believe that continuous improvement and product innovation are the keys to the long-term survival of the Inabel industry.
The modern-day weaving process starts with preparing the yarns by first starching them to provide stiffness, stability and gloss and then winding into bamboo spools to form threads. The weaver then lays out the design concept by first arranging the warp (vertical) threads on to the warping reel. This critical step sets out the spacing of the primary textile colors that will determine the final design of the textile. This warping stage could take weeks to complete depending on the complexity of the design. The actual weaving stage is next, and this is where the weft (horizontal) threads are inserted thread by thread into the warp threads to form the textile. Check out our video "Making Inabel”, here.
How long does an Inabel product take to produce?
Small items such as scarves take about one to two days to weave (excluding the loom set up time which could take up to three weeks). Larger items such as brocaded blankets could take as long as three to four months to make.
Do you perform quality control checks?
Yes. Every Inabel Shop product has been checked for flaws before leaving the workshop.
Because of the handwoven nature of the textiles, the occasional stray threads may appear here and there. This is normal - just simply snip off with sharp scissors and avoid pulling on the thread. Don’t worry, a stray thread will not unravel a well-woven fabric. For brocaded items such as towels and blankets, occasional snagging may occur especially if they get caught in Velcro or hooks. In this instance, resist the urge to snip - just readjust by gently pulling on the fabric until the loose thread returns to its original place.
How do you care for Inabel textiles?
All Inabel Shop products (except for the stuffed animals and certain accent throw pillows) are machine washable in cold water and gentle cycle. Please follow the care instructions for each product. Most of the washable products can also be machine dried (tumble dry low). However, to save on energy costs, we suggest hang drying. You will find that the scarves and towels, for instance, dry very quickly and will not lose their shape when hang dried.
Certain items where the yarns have been starched will appear stiff when new. After the first washing, the fabric will soften to its natural state. If needed, warm ironing of the item will provide a crisp appearance.
Why are Inabel products not 100% cotton?
Almost all Inabel textiles being produced now are a blend of cotton and polyester or abaca/hemp. Weavers have determined that blending non-cotton fibers adds to the stability of the textiles, produces less wrinkles, and inhibits significant shrinkage when washed.
Orders and Shipping
Why are Inabel Shop products only available in the United States?
The wide range of Inabel products have been, until now, available only in the Philippines. As a U.S. - based company, Inabel Shop is currently focused on making Inabel products accessible to our U.S. customers by bringing the products into the country and therefore making them ready to be shipped within the region quickly and cheaply.
What shipping carriers do you use?
We ship via the United States Postal Service (USPS). Orders are shipped within two to three business days of order placement and should arrive within three to five business days.
How much does shipping cost?
Inabel Shop offers free shipping within the U.S. for orders over US$75. We also offer a flat rate of US$12 for all other orders within the continental U.S.
*Some products are subject to a US$15-20 shipping and handling fee.
What is your Return/ Exchange policy?
We are committed to offering you quality products that have been hand selected and tested for craftsmanship and durability. If, however, you are not 100% satisfied with your purchase, you can return the product within 30 days from ship date and either get a full refund or an exchange the a similar product or another item. Note that because most of our products are one of a kind, exchanging for an exact similar item may not be possible. We will be happy to replace with another item of similar value. For more details, check out our full Returns/Exchange Policy page.