Mekong Quilts reopens Ho Chi Minh City flagship store

With great optimism and hope for the future, Mekong Quilts has reopened its Ho Chi Minh City flagship store—this time on Pasteur Street, one of the city’s most culturally vibrant stretches of the city centre with more than 150 years of colonial and modern history.


Located at 85 Pasteur, Bến Nghe Ward, District 1 in Ho Chi Minh City, this new store replaces Mekong Quilts’ previous flagship store on Lê Lợi street.


Our new Mekong Quilt shop is ready to welcome you

A long journey from 2001 with a mission

Founded in 2001, Mekong Quilts started in a small alley house with less than 5 female artisans and a mission to uplift the lives of underprivileged women in the region. The plan was relatively simplistic—create sustainable fabric work for them that came initially in the form of quilt beddings.


“Eventually we moved out of the alley because it was difficult for customers to find [us],” Bernard Kervyn, Founding Director of Mekong Quilts, recalled.


By 2005, Mekong Quilts found its way to Nguyễn Huệ boulevard, now known as the city’s walking street. Most of Mekong Quilt’s fabric production was thus moved nearer to the homes of the women artisan in the Mekong Delta, allowing them to stay closer to their families, a key change that has helped many children from one-parent families stay in school.


A group of quilters busy quilting


“For more adept quilters, some may even work from home while taking care of the children,” Bernard emphasised.

Expanding product line-up and going beyond Vietnam

Soon after, Mekong Quilts expanded its recruitment into Cambodia and opened two more stores in Cambodia and Hanoi by 2010. The core product line-up was also enriched with new products such as baby quilts, water hyacinth bags and an array of papier-mâché handicrafts.

In 2012, Mekong Quilts launched south-east Asia’s first 100% bamboo-made bicycle. The Mekong Quilts line of Bamboo Bicycles has since been diversified into a full range of traditional and electric bicycles with sizes suitable for the entire family.


You can discover some of our bamboo bikes in our new shop


Owing to a boom in regional tourism in 2018 and 2019, more than 100 female artisans in both Vietnam and Cambodia found stable employment thanks to increasing sales in both countries.

The pandemic and changing strategies

With the advent of the Covid-19 pandemic in early 2020, Mekong Quilts closed all its physical stores and turned to developing new products and focusing on online sales. Despite the popularity of new ideas such as handcrafted facemasks featuring intricate ethnic art from the region, it became increasingly difficult to acquire new orders as tourism to the region began declining to an effective zero by mid-2021.


The Snap Cafe in Thủ Đức city’s Thảo Điền ward kindly assisted Mekong Quilts by providing a small pop-up shop space that allowed many of the area’s expatriate and local Vietnamese residents to experience Mekong Quilts products in person. Despite the limitations of a pop-up shop, Mekong Quilts soon garnered a local Vietnamese following that identified closely with the social enterprise’s mission at large.


The Snap Cafe, in Thao Dien


“By the end of 2021, we were left with less than 30 artisans working in Hậu Giang province [in the Mekong Delta],” Bernard explained.


Efforts were redirected to social media and enticing customers from the west, but global disasters have led to the rise in the cost of shipping, making international shipping more expensive.


“Thanks to the reopening of Vietnam and south-east Asia, we believe that we will need to depend on the shop more!” Bernard, explaining enthusiastically.

How you can help Mekong Quilts

Mekong Quilts’ new store at 85 Pasteur is now soft-opened and happy to receive guests. All suggestions for improvement are gladly welcomed. Come discover new products such as quilt jackets and quilt cushions for both humans and pets made from weatherproof fabric from global partner Scancom International.


Our new Mekong Quilt shop is ready to welcome you


“People desire quality with a social purpose,” Bernard added.


Mekong Quilts aims to work in all directions and different avenues of sales to keep its women artisans employed.


One of our talented craftswoman working on a baby quilt


The new store at 85 Pasteur will also become a point of gathering between partner NGOs and a place for like-minded people to meet.


A grand opening is expected in mid-September 2022. Follow Mekong Quilts Facebook page and website for the latest updates!


Mekong Quilts is also searching for a co-tenant for unused space on Level 2 (3rd floor). Please contact Bernard at +84 913 105 189.



















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