A HaaSii Club "love leaf" represents a magical moment of human connection.
They are a cross-cultural co-creation with the Kayan craftsmen of Huay Pu Keng village – a remote refugee settlement on the border between Thailand and Myanmar.
HaaSii Club befriended the village in late 2015, and continued visiting periodically over the course of 1 year. Early in that process, we introduced a love-giving ritual at the end of every experience we shared together. Initially, we exchanged plastic laminated hearts, and called them "lovenotes."
We then asked the village craftsmen to help design a lovenote replacement from natural materials. HaaSii adventurers from the US, Russia, Netherlands and Thailand helped think through what kinds of attributes this love-giving token could have. One thing we all wanted was that the final design would include an element representing Huay Pu Keng village in a meaningful way.
The craftsmen looked around them and remembered that making roof shingles out of leaves they collect in the forest is an important source of income for the village during 3-4 months of every year. Lovenotes became love leaves. Since "leaving love" was precisely the purpose in mind for them, the leaf design was perfect.
And so the love leaves concept was born, bringing love to each holder from one of the world's remote and forgotten cultures who are fighting to keep their traditions alive. The hook on each leaf is from brass, like the beautiful coils many village women choose to wear around their necks.
Today there are 5 families in Huay Pu Keng who participate in carving thousands of loveleaves for HaaSii. This provides useful extra family income, and offers a solid reason for fathers and sons to work together at keeping up their traditional carving and brass handling skills.
No trees are cut down in the process of carving love leaves. Huay Pu Keng is situated next to a jungle river, where fallen trees occur naturally in abundance.
Love leaves are often packaged in bags that are handwoven by the women of Huay Pu Keng. We use their beautiful handwoven scarves in HaaSii Club activities too.
HaaSii Club has been actively using love leaves to nurture special connections between people of different cultures since 2016. They are only available as a gift from a HaaSii host or participant, and are not sold online.
If you have received a love leaf, it's also your personal invitation and identification key for joining HaaSii in a world-wide wave of multi-cultural magic that we're activating from June 2018-Dec 2019.
Register your love leaf to get on the world-wide events invitation list now.
Learn more about the Kayan culture and HaaSii's relationship with the village of Huay Pu Keng in the videos below. And, be sure to visit and like them on Facebook, please!