Deep in meditation one day, entrepreneur Shula Mozes found herself envisioning what could happen if women who can’t work outside the home—because of religious, cultural, geographical, or child-care reasons—could find a way to earn money. That eureka moment ultimately led to the founding of Iota. A design business driven by social and ecological concerns, it empowers Bedouin women in Israel to create beautiful objects that are then sold to generate income.
To bring the idea to fruition, Mozes joined forces with industrial designer Tal Zur, who conceived Iota’s crochet training program and product designs. The company goes into communities with high unemployment and begins by teaching women to hold yarn properly to crochet a simple chain. Once they have mastered more advanced techniques, Iota delivers balls of cotton or cotton-blend yarn—imported from Turkey and Italy and machine-knit into larger strands in Tel Aviv—along with instructions for making rugs, cushions, and seats for stools.
Mozes chose the name Iota to evoke the idea of small elements in something larger. Larger, indeed. Concurrent with Milan’s recent Salone Internazionale del Mobile, Iota’s wares appeared in Tom Dixon’s off-site exhibition, “Multiplex.”