Hi, we're Cesta!

We started Cesta with a shared goal—to create beautiful products while making a difference. Thoughtful details are at the heart of every element of the brand. After years of working in the fashion industry on all sides of the game, we've learned a few things. We're building Cesta to change the rules, one basket at a time.

xx Erin + Courtney

Our Design Ethos:
Cesta is a mission-based brand, focused on a meaningful supply chain with integrity. Our bags are made entirely by hand from start-to-finish. Our baskets are handwoven by female artisans in Rwanda, Africa, using locally sourced, renewable resources. 
Each piece is finished by hand in Italy with thoughtfully chosen, responsible materials. Our hope is to create economy in the developing world and to promote female empowerment through joyful, ethically-made accessories. 

We work hand-in-hand with our weaving partners in Rwanda to honor their traditional handcraft, while interpreting it through a modern lens. Every Cesta bag proudly features woven and embroidered details by these skilled artisans, furthering our mission to celebrate their craft while supporting the livelihood of fellow creative women.

Established in 2018 by Courtney Fasciano and Erin Ryder with a clear design point of view and larger goal of creating beautiful products, while making a difference.
Cesta was recognized by the CFDA in 2019 for our excellence in global logistics and is sold in partnership with a select group of luxury retailers across the globe.

Our Artisan Approach:
Weaving is an age-old tradition in Rwanda - a rite of passage, passed down from one mother to daughter. These women and the beautiful work they create, are the soul of our brand.

Home-based handwork is the second largest employer of women in emerging economies. Often overlooked, it is a critical economic driver and source of gender independence. Our home-based weavers are audited by a third party, Nest, who certifies that the baskets we design are ethically handcrafted and that our artisans are paid a fair wage for the work they do. To earn Nest certification, a supplier must participate in their rigorous Ethical Handcraft Program, which includes onsite training, home visits, document and policy reviews. We thank Nest for their leadership in helping handwork to become a sustainable solution that can scale.

Each weaving cooperative is led by a Master Weaver responsible for recruiting, training and overseeing the work of her collective. As Cesta’s business grows, more Master Weavers will be empowered to form fair wage cooperatives and spread the supply chain further through Rwanda. These women are entrepreneurs themselves and we’re building our businesses together. Our artisans set the price per basket themselves based on the amount of time and energy each style takes them to weave. They have a voice in the process and are paid wages that allow them to provide for their families and save and invest money for their future. Their work enables their families to purchase livestock, fund education, seek medical care and alleviate poverty in rural communities.

Earth First Policy:
We think all brands have a responsibility to limit their ecological impact. In addition to our founding principal of paying fair wages across our supply chain, we are committed to an Earth First Policy, that holds our team and production partners accountable for our choices.

Our products are made by hand from start-to-finish from the cleanest raw materials available. Products like ours are hard to produce and even harder to keep affordable. We do our best to provide you with exceptional quality for the cost and make sure that we are transparent with all steps of our supply chain.
We’re better than most, but we all must do more -- we are always looking for ways to use even more sustainable materials and utilize techniques to improve our carbon footprint.

Our raw materials are rooted in sustainability. Cesta baskets are woven of locally-sourced, organic vegetable-dyed sisal and raffia -- ideal biodegradable and renewable resources. Sisal groves help reduce soil erosion and assist with watershed management in rural Rwanda. Our finished baskets are 100 percent biodegradable.

Finishing Materials: 
We use a superior vegetable dyed Italian Nappa leather and Vesuvio suede to finish our baskets, which we source from an Italian tannery that consistently wins global awards for their sustainability efforts. They are Blue Angel certified and Gold Rated by the Leather Working Group. Our bags are all lined with organic, deadstock canvas. 

Our shipping boxes, branded butcher paper and gummed tape are all made from biodegradable materials that are curbside recyclable and home compostable.
We intentionally exclude extraneous paper printouts in your order. Our custom drop-in and hang tags are letter-pressed on recycled paper by a Brooklyn-based small business (like our own).

 Good Vibes Are in The Bag.