If I were writing this article two years ago I would have described Serpent and Bow as the Internet’s best kept secret. For years I have followed their journey, fawned over their beautiful depictions of full moons and botany, and obsessed over how each of their undergarments emanated the goddess. Since their humble beginning, Serpent and Bow’s pieces have become highly sought after, their designs have flourished, and their team has grown.
Serpent and Bow is a handmade undies brand born from, sewn, and curated by Rachel Blodgett. It also features collaborative work with visual artists Kaija Sabbah and Emma Nikola Castleberry. All three of these makers are deeply connected to the work they create and to one another as people. The entirety of Serpent and Bow speaks to this. Their brand mixes the mystic with the wearable and down-to-earth. It allows one to wear, on their earthly body, a garment made from natural fibers, colored with non-synthetic dyes, and designed with the personal experience of each wearer in mind.
Each stitch that goes into the making of these garments is dripping with the love of those running Serpent and Bow. Their products are designed, cut, and sewn by hand. It is Serpent and Bow’s personal goal to affix each customer with a piece that facilitates a conversation between themselves and their bodies. Their garments are meant to heal and wake, to honor the physical and the spiritual, and open oneself up to be who and what they have always wished to be.
Serpent and Bow works only with natural dyes: rich colors derived straight from our earth. Their blues come from indigo, their greens from various botanical sources, their yellows from beeswax.
The historical importance of creating such spiritual pieces using indigo dye cannot be ignored. There is proof of indigo being used to breathe life into objects as early as the third millennium. For hundreds of years, it was described as “blue gold” in European countries, as it was rare and difficult to import from India. Indigo was not commercially available until the late 17th century, and by then, it was in high demand. Natural indigo is derived from either the woad plant or from one of four types of the genus Indigofera.
Because non-synthetic dyes are used, the coloring of Serpent and Bow’s undergarments imitate the colors seen on a walk in the woods or a hike up a great, vast mountain. The deep blue of their indigo bralettes remind us of a cloudless night, the rich greens are that of meadows of grass that tickle the knees, their yellows the color of clay found when you use your fingers to dig deep beneath soil.
There is something ritualistic and personal about the batik designs on Serpent and Bow’s garments. They feature symbolism that connects deeply to our four elements (earth, fire, wind, water), the moon, and objects that are often personal and familiar. Serpent and Bow’s work depicts imagery that explores the merging of self and soul, the power that comes from within and also the power that comes from all other natural bodies. Their sets depict altars, moons, and various earthly talismans.
Since Serpent and Bow’s work is completely handmade, their stock and availability is limited and exclusive. They offer limited-release seasonal pieces and custom orders. As they wish to make their conversational garments available for all bodies, they offer custom sizing and consultations.
It is of the utmost importance that Serpent and Bow’s pieces speak to your very soul, that they wake up the magic from within, and help to guide it outwards.