In indigenous language from the Venezuelan Andes where my family is from, MUKUPATI means: "where the roads meet."
My name is Eliana Lopez. I was born and raised in Venezuela and moved to San Francisco, California about 13 years ago. I am an artist, entrepreneur, and the mother of two beautiful boys and a dog.
Two and half years ago, I started researching organic underwear when I could not find the Potty trainers for my son Kian. I wanted something free of polyester, organic, and with thoughtful prints away from the regular trucks and superheroes. After asking myself- “how hard can it be to make this?”- I expanded my knowledge about Organic Cotton; how it is produced, how it should be printed, and how durable the fabric was. My curiosity sparked and pushed me to go back to school, and I learned how to sew, prepare a collection, accounting and entrepreneurship concepts and principles to start my own business.
Therefore, a year and a half ago, my mother (who happened to have a small clothing factory in Venezuela for the last 30 years) joined me. We started to make prototypes, forecast costs, and test the quality of different fabrics we used. Then, we launched our online store, where we gathered feedback from real customers outside of family and friends. Happily, the response has been very positive and encouraging to continue growing.
To give back to my home country, Venezuela, we donated 1% of our profits to children and families in need. A little background on our production, it is made in Venezuela at a family-run factory committed to producing Zero waste and providing free vocational training to youth.
To honor our indigenous roots and celebrate this creative encounter, we called it: MUKUPATI: (moo-koo-pa-tee), a pre-columbian word that means: "Where the paths meet."
Mukupati’s products are made by us women. We do not contract out. Our American milled cotton is certified GOTS organic, printed OEKO-TEX standard for sustainable clothing packs, and subscriptions. Our fabric print tastefully promotes conversation about the environment, diversity, and inclusivity. Also, our packaging is plastic-free, and we are establishing a recycling process to collect discarded clothing to be used for future insulation.
What started as innocent research for the best underpants for my son became a beautiful project that let me use all my creativity and passion for sustainability to spread to other families on the same path. Mukupati has become an intersection of cultures, languages, genders, and generations with a common goal of building a better future for our children and the planet we will leave to them.