N A T U R E ' S F I N G E R P R I N T
Ali Dakota was created on Kauai by artist Jill Smith. She is inspired by all forms of creativity and is mostly intrigued with textiles, recycled art, art from nature, gems and metals.
A few years back she came across the art of eco-printing, the process of imprinting Mother Nature’s flora onto fabrics. She instantly knew this was a form of art she could take with her while she traveled the world with her family. Through thoughtful design and the alchemy of the natural world, each piece Jill creates is one-of-a-kind.
The line brings together the love of nature, exploration, adventure, and art. Jill's artistic process is rooted in gratitude and offers you a sense of grounded energy as you walk your path. Ali Dakota bags are sustainably crafted in Los Angeles, using Jill's naturally hand-printed fabric and up-cycled remnants from airplane seat leather. In a world of disposable fashion, Ali Dakota offers a quality product meant to last.
Please follow along on her journey as she explores which ever form of art she is curious of in the moment.
Bundled with Love
about the collections
Handwoven in Morocco
My oldest son Alex had an incredible adventure throughout Morocco in the spring of 2017. This journey was inspired by his passion for the sport of surfing. He partnered with the Moroccan government to travel and teach the children of Morocco how to surf and help rebuild their school. His other days were filled with camel riding in the Sahara, snowboarding the Atlas Mountains, surfing Safi and Anchor surf breaks. Most importantly he explored and listened to the beauty of the Moroccan culture. One of his choice moments of his trip was when he spent time in Agidar admiring the local weavers relish in their trade, he left that day with three rugs tucked under his arm. He returned from his trip with a sense of gratitude for his adventure and gifted me these beautiful rugs. "Mom, I thought you could get creative with these!"
The Salam collection was born.
Made in Kauai
Simplify your life. Simplify your mind. Simplify your surrounding.
This collection was created during this process. A move from a well packed home on a farm to a small simple home in a charming little town surrounded by waterfalls and rainbows. A process of letting go of so much. Before I packed up my studio I celebrated the magical open air space by bundling up leaves collected on the farm. Throughout the move I rewarded myself with moments of unbundling the fabrics for this collection. It was an enjoyable break from the chaos and a time to celebrate in the midst of a transition.
Made in Oahu
Imua in Hawaii represents moving forward.This collection was conceived in a time where there was more than enough happening in the world of Ali Dakota, not to mention our world as a whole. During the launch of Ali Dakota, I was on the North Shore of Oahu with my family. We were in the midst of the surfing world and the craziest election to this day. As my son Koa competed in the Triple Crown of Surfing, we transformed an old fruit stand into the Sunrise Shack, my son Travis’s Organic Coffee shop. Honolulu Fashion Week was simultaneously occurring, all while my son Alex launched “One Way Ticket,” an edit he produced while traveling the globe for 6 months. Everything around me was moving so quickly, and I retreated to the forests of Pupukea to enjoy the peace and gather treasures from nature that I bundled into fabric to create this collection. The Imua Collection embodies the wonder of moving forward, may you always have the courage to walk through the chaos into your own piece of paradise in this wild world of ours.
Made in Kauai
Living on the Garden Isle gives me endless bliss with the lush landscape to play in! As my family matured and went off on their own adventurous quests, I had time on my hands to discover a new way to transform fabrics through the art of Eco-printing. After tons of experimenting, I began unbundling fabrics that took my breath away as they revealed pigments that nature left behind. This is when my first Collection of Ali Dakota clutch handbags was conceived!
Made in California
After months of our three sons going separate ways traveling the world, my husband and I met up with our young men in California. The thrill and joy of being reunited, hearing all the tales of their travels and hashing over new ideas was priceless. As they all tended to their business, I found solitude among the Eucalyptus forests. The “ReUnited” Collection was created!
Made in Tahoe
Lake Tahoe has always peaked my interest, the thought of Mountains meeting a turquoise blue lake intrigued me. When gifted a trip to this area I could not turn it down. I was blown away on the beauty before me. The deep blue, cloudless skies, the mammoth evergreens, and the flawless Caribbean colored lake tugged at my heartstrings. After spending days exploring the forests full of Jeffrey pine, Aspen, Manzanita, Willow and Sage the “Pristine” Collection was created for you to enjoy.
CULTIVATE THE HABIT OF BEING GRATEFUL...
Counting your blessings one Gem at a time
Simply close your eyes, in your mind state something your are Grateful for, acknowledge why, then slide a gem. Repeat this until all the gems are pulled to one side of the bracelet. Do this on a daily basis and begin to feel the joy in your heart.
It's much more than a bracelet, it's a way of life! Being Grateful for all the blessings in your life can certainly help lighten the load. When you wear your bracelet, and count your blessings, you subconsciously go through your day being thankful for all the goodness in your life. In return it attracts more joy to your life on a daily basis.
"When you arise in the morning think of what a privilege it is to be alive, to think, to enjoy, to love"
-Marcus Aurelius (121-180) Roman Emperor
Back in Black Sarongs
After exploring the art of discharging color, I was intrigued by what lies beneath. It seems all blacks are made of a myriad of colors. So once again this process is also like a box of chocolates, you never know what you may get.