A child’s creativity knows no limits. Kids have a natural instinct to learn and discover new things, without any of the judgement or fear that comes with age. Once we become adults, we may feel shy about trying something new, or scared that we’ll make a mistake, but children just throw themselves in to any new experience with freedom and confidence. Instead of holding back, we should be following the leads of our little ones, and with the recent opening of Numero 74 L’Atelier in the centre of Santa Gertrudis, Ibiza families now have a place to come together over new skills, tasty healthy food and endless creativity, inspiring each other in the process.
The bright, airy and open Numero 74 L’Atelier space includes a yoga deck overlooking the village playground, an urban garden growing fruit and vegetables for the kitchen, a buffet-style cafe and juice bar serving breakfast (from 9.30am), brunch and dinner, plus a stylish store selling pieces from the renowned Numero 74 collections, from organic cotton cushion covers and duvets to stylish and chic boho fashion and charming olde world style soft toys. Around the boutique and restaurant, weaving looms, embroidery kits and even a rustic miniature market provide the perfect places for children to play, while their parents are enjoying a meal, a yoga class or browsing in the boutique.
Parisian founder of Numero 74 L’Atelier, Tara Sfez – known to her loved ones, friends and colleagues as Poupy – is an inspiring entrepreneur with a background in children’s events, including working with Disneyland Paris, and running restaurants and working in sustainable fashion. Her vision to create a space where families can take part in workshops, experience healthy food and connect with one another, is part of a much larger dream. “We believe this project can open in cities all around the world,” she explains, when talking about the inspiration for the flagship Numero 74 L’Atelier concept in Ibiza. “It’s a place for sharing family moments, a place to discover, and also a place to provide work for locals.”
Tara’s connection to Ibiza comes from spending summer holidays here, getting to know the true essence of the island and understanding the freedom and magic that comes along with its authentic lifestyle. Introducing her creative passions to the island was the logical next step. Tara created the Numero 74 brand in 2009, and today the label produces over 5000 pieces for retail, from blankets and clothing to toys and creative kits for adults or children. Everything is made from organic cotton, sourced in Sri Lanka and then woven, cut and prepared in Thailand, using a simple palette of colours that has never changed since the brand’s inception. “Our speciality is really the colours,” she says. “We don’t follow the trend for creating new collections every season – we have our basic products that have been the same since the beginning. I’m a very faithful person, when I love something, I love it forever, so that is our belief with Numero 74 L’Atelier”
Nowhere is that faith and love more evident than in the story of how Numero 74 L’Atelier founder Tara’s relationship with Thailand began. After her son was born prematurely, he suffered from medical problems and animals became a great support for him. When he was two years old, on a trip to the East, he met a baby elephant called Duna and fell in love. Tara promised to take her son back every year to visit his elephant, and made good on that promise, returning to Chiang Mai every year. Her son is now 20 years old and studying to be a vet – he’s also still great friends with Duna.
Thanks to this ongoing love story, the family business has grown from there. “After visiting Thailand as much as possible to see Duna, I had a big wish to work with the Thai people – I felt that they had a lot to teach us,” Tara explains. “Over time, we met a tuk-tuk driver who took us to see the elephant every day. He was amazing, so I asked if he could help us find some women to work for us, to support us and make our product.” Fast forward ten years, and that same tuk-tuk driver is now Tara’s business partner, managing a team of over 400 women, working from home to prepare the fabric, weave the cotton and cut the pieces ready to send to Europe. This ethical and sustainable development is at the heart of what Numero 74 L’Atelier stands for.
After selling online and via wholesale for many years, this pilot project in Santa Gertrudis is the first opportunity for Tara and the Numero 74 L’Atelier team to meet their customers face-to-face. “I realised that something was missing,” says Tara on reflection of the brand’s evolution. “I began to feel it wasn’t meaningful enough, and I realised that I had this dream of a place where we could invite people to discover that they too can be creative. To be creative is the way to heal ourselves, and consequently, to heal the world.” In addition to offering creative workshops for all ages, Numero 74 L’Atelier sells take-away kits you can work on home, from delicate pocket purses to giant wall posters – there’s something for everyone to create.
Through the daily craft or body workshops at Numero 74 L’Atelier, children and adults alike can reconnect, as families and friends. Through weaving, macrame, acro-yoga and a huge variety of other activities, they find pleasure in the art of making something new with their own hands or bodies. Guests enter into the kitchen to taste fresh and authentic homemade food – there are already plans afoot to host after-school cooking classes in the autumn months, adding yet another string to their creative bow. All of the products in the store are sustainable, and ethically sourced, from the weaving loom made of reclaimed wood from houses in Thailand, to the cherry tomatoes growing in pots on the terrace. Authenticity, heart and soul sit at the very foundation of this special and unique place – just step right in and find out how creative you can really be.