How to Name a Banana
Bananas are oddballs when it comes to their naming process. Species of wild banana follow the standard binomial process: Musa acuminata, Musa Cheesmanii, Musa Velutina, etc. Their cultivars however have a nomenclature all their own. Developed by Norman Simmonds and Kenneth Shepherd in 1955, the system classifies cultivated bananas into genome groups and subgroups.
SIGIL SCENT is a small batch and natural perfume company that grew out of a love of nature—each scent smells like a bottled walk through different landscapes and seasons—and a fascination for the history of perfume. The fragrances are modern, yet rooted in tradition.
The monsoon jungles of Kerala provide the perfect environment for black pepper to mature. The pepper vine grows best at elevation with frequent rain and plenty of tree trunks to wrap its near 10 metre length around. After the nourishing monsoon comes a dry season when growers meticulously lay out its berries under the sun until they turn black, and spicy, and good. Today, black pepper is produced in Vietnam and elsewhere, but none secure the same prices as Keralite appellations, like Malabar and Tellicherry. The greatest attempts of empires, corporations, and botanists have failed to devise a better way to produce great black pepper other than just leaving it be.
Samorn Sanixay is the owner of Eastern Weft, a company based between Laos and Australia. They produce silk and linen goods for you and your home. I approached Samorn because of her stance on natural dyes. Eastern Weft, as well as Samorn’s personal projects are dyed solely with dyes that can either be grown or gathered. Turmeric to create varying tones of yellow and orange. Pure indigo to create their blues. Black rice patties to create black and greys, and avocado peels to conjure pinks.
A short history
We live in a world filled with colour, endlessly complex, but subjective to us as a species. We give meaning to it, meaning that has evolved through culture, time, and region. We are so used to experiencing the world through our own culture and individual experience of it that it can be hard for us to consider viewing it through the lens of another. A kind of historical and cultural empathy. Take black for example, when viewed through one lens, black is a symbol of death, for piety, and mourning. Of surrender to religion, of decay, and of evil. When viewed through another, black can be a symbol of life, for the Nile swelling and making fertile land of its shores. A symbol of class, rebellion, counter-culture, and eventual normalcy.