At Work With No.41

At Work With No.41We are so excited to welcome Alison from No.41 to the blog today to share a little bit about their business and how they are impacting lives! No.41Beautiful light and beautiful bags"No.41 literally means FOR ONE. We started in March 2012 with 16 girls from the local orphanage in Gisenyi, Rwanda with the intention of teaching them the culturally relevant trade of sewing and empowering them to give back to their local community. For each bag sewn, a young woman earns a sustainable income and a child receives a hot, healthy lunch every day at school for the entire year. Currently, No.41 employs 32 young women and 6 men feeding 870 students and 36 teachers, every day." At Work With No.41 via A Beautiful MessSewing machine and gorgeous fabric"An average workday doesn't really pertain to us! At the beginning, we had more structure, 8am-4pm Monday-Friday. And let's just say sewing, laughing and Justin Bieber dance parties were on the schedule. Now, that still goes on, but the girls work solely on commission and are able to come and go whenever they want, because that's what worked best for everyone. We rent both houses inside our little compound. The front house we share with some of the girls, and the back house is No.41 workspace. So we are able to work from the comfort of the living room while still being available for the girls and any needs that may come up throughout the day. Every day is a new adventure." Photo wall"One of our favorite things about the space is our photo wall. Literally being able to see the whole journey through photos has been a reminder of how far we've all come in a little over a year." No.41 hard at workNo.41 on A Beautiful Mess"We love the display wall, which is actually in the living room of our house. Just as we were ready to open up shop, or landlord was knocking down the house in the back of ours to build what is now the No.41 house. As old dusty, dirty, fabulously charming doors and windows were piling up to head to the dumpster, we snatched them up to display our products on. We have visitors who come through often, so we like to change it up and make it feel fresh. We love the "store front" feel it gives to our little part of the world."No.41 storefrontThank you so much for sharing, Alison! If you'd like to learn more about No.41, you can check out their website and their online store! xo.

  • “I took Requip and all I got was this lousy yarn.”

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  • This is beautiful. You don’t have to have a fancy work space to make a change.

  • Thanks so much for sharing this with us, l’ve just bought two bags as Christmas presents. xx

  • What a wonderful space and such a great thing they are doing! I just ordered my Diana bag and I can’t wait for it to arrive, thanks for putting me in touch with an organization doing good things! : ) Now that’s beautiful!

  • I can’t wait to learn more about them. I love businesses that help worthy causes.

  • How awesome! Thanks for sharing, this is by far one of my favorites! It’s so fascinating to see where people work.

  • I loved this post, thanks! I am going to be following their awesome work and blog.

  • Awesome story! I love how they’ve decorated their space. It’s so encouraging to see people doing something to help others.

  • Thank you so much for sharing this! I absolutely love the idea. I want to start something like this in Zambia!

  • This is amazing! It’s just wonderful and inspiring to see how much can be done in little time. Organizations like these need the publicity, so thanks for sharing on your platform:)

  • I love every one of your posts basically, but I’m very glad to see you spreading the word of solidarity

  • very beautiful. i feel so inspired by your crafts. Keep your creativity high 🙂

  • I love that this is on ABM. So happy to see this. Yay Alison and No. 41!

  • Great story girls, Would love to hear about more organisations like this using creativity to help others.

  • This brought tears to my eyes actually, such a beautiful organization and set of photos. Beautiful colors.

  • Such a wonderful feature!! Just visited No.41’s online shop and the bags are really amazing..thanks for sharing !!

  • This is so touching and inspiring, all the best for them, thank you for sharing!


  • so great of you to present this team! It’s always inspiring to see that people take action and help others and this action helps people do something with their lives. so great that these women get independence and mostly that a child gets food for a year!thanks for this post! xxx

  • Definitely a great “At Work With” post. It feels like I can get to know each individual woman through the “Meet the Girls” page, which makes this company so interesting! I also really like how each product is named after whomever made it. What a cool idea! But the best, of course, is knowing that each beautiful product is made by talented hands, not to mention its for a great cause. Keep it up No.41!

  • Ohh wow, I’m impressed you guys shared this! How lovely, I used to organize dinner parties and give all the gainings to a similar school in Mozambique.. This touched my heart. I think I would love to re-organize one of those diners..

  • It’s an amazing project! Thanks for sharing 🙂


  • My family always celebrates a “green” Christmas. We usually spend less on each other and give more to charities. The gifts that we do give are either green in nature; ie experience, hand-made, sustainable, or gift items like the No. 41 bags. I’ll be sure to pass this along, I’d love to support it!

  • What an amazing initiative! Thanks for much for sharing this important project with us.

  • Im obsessed with the outcome of their work!!! Love the african look to it, and above all, GREAT CAUSE!!!

  • Very inspiring. Thanks so much for sharing. Will have to check this out now!

  • Dear ABM team, thanks for using your space to share such a beautiful story! beautiful job!

  • Thank you for sharing! One of the major important things in a charitable organization that I look for is that it’s not just giving things, but creating jobs. People don’t need a pair of shoes as much as they need a job and a sustainable income to provide for a family. That’s why I really respect organizations like these!

  • What a touching post! I love this type of activist consumerism! The products are really cute and fairly priced. Thanks for sharing!

  • What a beautiful business! This is so inspiring!

    xo, Juliette Laura

  • Amazing! I want that Diane signature bag! 🙂 And prolly will get it..:)
    Amazing idea.
    Thanks for sharing it on your blog! )

  • Absolutely gorgeous! Not only that but it’s a fantastic company doing work that really can make a difference. Thanks for sharing!

  • Such an inspiration! Thank you so much for sharing this beautiful and important story. Gorgeous photos too!

  • love handmade things and these are no exception due to the great cause! thanks for sharing this it was so inspiring! xx. gigi.

  • Thanks so much for introducing us to this company! I am obsessed with African fabric and I love the cause.

  • so amazing! i love this story, very meaningful 🙂


  • I love this post, these are definitely amazing women and their smiles, warm hearts and creativity make me smile. I checked out the website and it’s now bookmarked. Thanks for the post!

  • This is such an inspiring “At Work” piece. Thank you so much for sharing!

  • How lovely!! great store…


  • This is amazing. Thank you for sharing… One world, one love! I recently did a book recap about true love and somehow I find this very relatable.


  • What a beautiful business. Thank you for sharing. At the women’s shelter I volunteer at, the homeless women are taught now to make different things threw knitting or sewing. Those items are then sold and they get the profit. It is a great way for them to learn a new skill and how to manage money.

  • Wonderful you featured this, these people are amazing! It’s so inspiring when people give something back while earning their living!

  • Wow! What an amazing organization. I loved checking out the workspace and reading about the work they’re doing!


  • This is very, very cool and a fantastic feature.

    People amaze me every day. Just wow.

  • Oh my! What a beautiful business and story. Thank you for sharing! Amazing.

  • A huge F*** YES for badass women! Thank you a billion times for featuring this.

  • Such a beautiful space and inspiring story!


  • This is a great post. Its really great to hear about people who are really trying to help others.

  • this is such great work that they are doing! i’m so glad that there are companies out there that are willing to promote helping others an advocating for those who can’t do it on their own. great job girls!!

  • Thanks girls for this sweet story. It is such a breath of fresh air to see people who are making a difference!!

  • What a cool company and really awesome space. Thanks for sharing. 🙂


  • This is such a cool house! And what a great organization.

  • Wow! This is wonderful. I love these kinds of social enterprises. It is something I hope to do myself in the future.

    Thanks for sharing it on your blog!

  • This is amazing — what a great organization, very inspiring! not to mention great style as well.

  • this post is sooooo awesome!!! total change of pace. so inspiring, absolutely love it. thanks for sharing with us!

  • This is so great! I’ve read up on this company before, and they do such amazing work, so I think it’s awesome that you featured them today!


  • THIS IS BEAUTIFUL!!! I’m so inspired by these women, their creations and their hearts! What an incredible space! 🙂

  • You’ve gone back up in my estimation. Well done for featuring a business which isn’t just whimsical with no soul, filtered down from Pinterest.

    This is great! Well done, guys! 🙂

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