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Michelle Baldwin and Michelle Taylor-Spearman want to save the world in style.
This story first appeared in the October 20, 2008 issue of WWD. Subscribe Today.
On a trip to Nepal, the entrepreneurs, who previously worked in the textile business, became enamored with a diamond fiber cashmere made from the underbelly of the capra hircus goat. While they found the fabric beautiful, soft and light to the touch, the working conditions of the local women who weave the fabric weren’t up to par.
So in creating TDM Design, the duo decided to give back. The women who make their handwoven, dyed and sometimes ruched silk, bamboo and merino wool scarves are offered abovemarket compensation and access to education and health care, courtesy of TDM Design. The scarves hit stores such as Saks Fifth Avenue, Scoop and Henri Bendel in the spring and the company is now expanding into wraps and small knit accessories. Wholesale prices range from $37 to $295. The company now provides medical care to 125 children, and is looking to make an even bigger mark on Nepal. “Our goal is to eventually build a school,” says Baldwin.