EL SHOPPO is the vision of Zoë Gowen, a woman who values a great sense of humor as much a unique sense of style. While she never planned to build an international fashion, accessory, and home décor business, it now seems inevitable. After almost a decade of knocking on doors, leaving notes in mailboxes, and barging in people’s homes on behalf of Southern Living, the former home-and-garden editrex was tired. Zoë desperately needed a relaxing vacation, and a new career that didn’t require her to come up with clever musings about sofas or sourcing Christmas trees in July. A magical trip to Mexico proved to be the solution.

“For years, I used to message my friends Jane and Billy Pritchard at Stray Dog Designs and ask if I could move to their San Miguel factory,” says Zoë. The Pritchards needn’t have worried. After spying the beautiful textiles crafted in Oaxaca, she abandoned the squatter plans and headed further south instead. “Billy set me up with an incredible craft guide who introduced me to some of the most amazing craftspeople,” she says. That’s when the flicker of EL SHOPPO ignited. “These are such a vibrant antidote to the chintzes and block print fabrics that I typically gravitate towards. I knew right away these textiles offer all the brightness and color of, say, a floral, but they also have a grounding simplicity to me. Plus, the huipil has an everyday, take-it-anywhere practicality that’s unbeatable. No matter their style, everyone should layer them into their wardrobe and home.”

After a few trips to Oaxaca meeting with artisans and workshops, “It was important that I have a direct relationship with the makers,” Zoë notes, El Shoppo became a reality. Based in Birmingham, Alabama, the collection features one-of-a-kind, handcrafted pieces spanning from huipiles and totes to candles and tabletop. The collection is ever evolving so check back for new products and updates.