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Cibado unfolded in 2007. This was a year full of crazy & serendipitous moments. Let me share some of them with you!

Early I the year I was in my hometown of Philadelphia contemplating 2 new paths to take my life in. One was to dive deeper into my yoga studies in order to start teaching, the other was to design & craft leather bags. Well I soon got what I asked for, both ( insert word) 
( happened ) developed) (took place) in the tiny little town of Hotchkiss Colorado. 

It all seemed a little crazy - I fully intended to pursue both interests in Philadelphia, where I was living. I even signed up for a leather working class when a rather sudden opportunity to attend a 5 week yoga Teacher training in Hotchkiss, Colorado presented itself. It was an opportunity I could not ignore. So, I postponed the leather working class, travelled  to this rural western Colorado town and started my yoga teacher training.

It is here I met Dona, the woman who was to become my business partner. I was renting a room in her house during the yoga training. One evening she asked me to tell her about myself. I spoke of my desire to design and craft leather bags. I shared with her that I had a background in Apparel Design and sewing and was anxious to start working with my hands again. While I had been working in the apparel industry it had mostly been behind a desk,  a situation I was determined to change.

She was startled at hearing all this. Turns out she was working with leather, designing for a local Buffalo Leather furniture company. Even crazier was that she had just started designing bags having local artisans sew together her ideas.


I remember the moment vividly when she showed me her bags and the most precious leather doll. I am fairly certain I squealed with delight at her creations. I admired what she had started. We immediately bonded over an obvious shared aesthetic as well as a love and appreciation for artisan craftsmanship. 

Over the next few weeks during the evenings we continued to get to know each other and when the yoga training ended she made me an offer. Move to Hotchkiss, stay at her home and join her in working  at the buffalo leather furniture company. You see, they needed someone who knew how to sew and use an industrial sewing machine. ( Need a sentence here that explains we would also begin to design and make bags together) I said yes - I could not ignore all these serendipitous signs. I returned to Philly just long enough to pack my car, then drive westward & onward.

and from scraps acquired during our projects we could together begin designing and crafting leather bags.

Read on HERE PAGE LINK to further learn how the bags came to life. Then on this page discuss the working for Buffalo Coll designing, playin - making mistakes learning leather.

I don’t live in Hotchkiss anymore and Dona is no longer my business partner but I will never forget who this venture started with and also where it started.

Today I am the sole gal behind every stitch. Each bag consists of hand sewn stitches and barn sourced horse tack, full of dusty history from the rugged American landscape.

Sincerely, your premier Colorado leather bag maker.

Cigdem ( pronounced more like…Chi dem) Or just call me Chi.