What is TŪNIQ?
TŪNIQ is a North African design label championing radical labor ethics and the art of traditional handwork in a time of mass production. Rejecting the commodification (1) of humanity, the label upholds the sanctity of human dignity, labor, and God’s earth through its transparent, shared-profits structure with its workers and through its online refuge for radical ethicists, The Oasis Journal. The label’s style ethos is driven by crafting minimalist items that are inspired by the Maghreb, with a political (2) and spiritual touch.
1. When human is reduced from ensouled being to mere customer and consumer, and all familial and social ties are similarly corrupted.
2. Awareness of and responsibility for the interconnectivity of all decolonial struggles for justice globally.
We, two Tunisian-American sisters and our adorable (and superhuman) mom, started working on TŪNIQ at Harvard University in Spring 2018, because we hate economic exploitation but love serving the world and God. We are activists and social theory nerds, which is why you might see us talking about how we're making sure our craftswomen aren't alienated from their labor and why you shouldn't buy from designers who appropriate from cultures that aren't their own. We never thought we would start a business. We were all more interested in politics, public service, and activism than we ever were in start-up culture. But years of experience in North Africa, watching traditional crafts die out, local communities be degraded, and women be forced to enter the industrialist workforce and upend their lives, forced us to act. We sought then an opportunity to stand against this tide and to model a more wholistic global marketplace. Inspired by our years of activism and of studying social and political theory, we sought to design a women's cooperative that could do that, while also preserving traditional crafts in North Africa. In everything we do, are our guided by our faith in God and his Message to our beloved teacher ﷺ.
If you want to learn more about how we've thoughtfully designed every part of this project read our ethics page.
Contact: Have feedback? Ideas? Feeling inspired? Wanna collaborate? Any question in general? Get in touch with us!! We would love to chat: firstname.lastname@example.org
Love & Light,
The TŪNIQ Fam
Leila, Iman, and Mariem
Please note: At this stage, the executive team at TŪNIQ is working on an entirely volunteer basis, and we have not paid ourselves a single cent of revenue. We won't feel comfortable paying ourselves until we've ensured the protection of our artisans' labor and futures, first, God willing.
Meet the Artisans: If you'd like to learn more about the artisans who actually made all the beautiful TŪNIQ pieces, check out our Meet the Artisans page, featuring all those who generously agreed to share their stories with you.
Follow Our Journey: Check out our blog here to follow our journey and learn about how we are intentionally designing every single aspect of this project to align with our values, down to the last thread.
Join the Oasis: We have always hoped that TŪNIQ could do more for the world than just offer soul-enriching clothing (rather than the soul-degrading clothing occupying our store shelves) which is why we also started The Oasis Journal, a refuge from the desert, where people can find a safe place for those seeking a world that respects the sanctity of human dignity, labor, and God's earth. We welcome any submissions!