A second day in Chicago an opportunity to pop over to Maya Romanoff in Skokie. If you hadn't heard of them, not to worry neither had I, but truth is there is an awesome story behind them that like all good stories starts with a hippy and a dream.
Inside a fairly unassuming building is the core of the Maya Romanoff business (they also have a small showroom in NY), with everything from design, manufacturing and sales housed inside of it. This family-run company is one which has quite a lot of spirituality at the center of it and looks out into the world for inspiration, finding it everywhere. The production facilities in the rear of the building were a hive of activity- all the wall coverings being produced by hand by a team of crafts people, many who had been with the company for over ten years. Seeing the handcrafted nature of the work which comes down to the experience of the workers here, you can really appreciate the pieces which they create.
Everything produced comes through quality control before leaving the facility, being checked and then lined up to ensure a good "flow". Obviously with more individualistic offerings (like hand crumpled paper) there is no such thing as a repeat, and so before being sent out, the papers are lined up and numbered in the order which those with experience in the product feel is the best presentation. The quality of the materials and the mix of technology and craft (they have also recently invested in a digital silkscreen printer) allows them to offer a vast collection with many focuses on everything from individualist and hand styled, to more "designed" and repeatable patterns.