Made in Sant Antoni
It often happens that the idiosyncrasies and activities of its people leave an indelible mark on the character of a place. From this perspective, Sant Antoni is a prime example, especially in terms of the crafts and natural goods made in the municipality. For generations, the knowledge and skills of innumerable activities have been passed down from parents to sons and daughters, mainly concerned with farming and agricultural production, but also the manufacture of crafts of all kinds. Currently Sant Antoni boasts the most interesting and varied range of handmade crafts and natural products.
We take a look at some of the prominent names that feature in this particular array of goods.
In the fashion world, the traditional espardenyes or rope soled sandals have gone from being the footwear of Ibizan country folk to sought after trendy items, essential for that cool summer look. From the window displays of small local shops they have made the leap to the pages of the glossy fashion magazines, and their fame continues to spread. Clearly, the work of artisan craftswomen like Patricia Monjo and Isabel Prats has had much to do with the popularity of this footwear. They are the driving force behind Espardenyes Torres, an adlib company that has reinvented and updated the espardenyas, giving them new look that has become part of the latest fashion scene for men and women alike. Today you can find numerous references to their brand, which has enriched the typical Ibizan traditional footwear with their new and creative contributions.
Staying with handmade crafts, we consider the ceramics and jewellery in the accessories sector, a field where the name of Carol Boneto (Santa Agnès de Corona) deservedly stands out. She uses pure, raw materials in her creations such as porcelain, tin, and silver to illuminate her minimalist jewellery with its geometric shapes. Combining ceramics and metal, these pieces are the result of a pure process of craftsmanship. This artist also creates decorative, large format ceramic pieces. In summer, on Thursday evenings, you can browse the stands at the Sant Rafel Craft Fair and buy some of her creations.
The Bijouterie Ibiza, a jewellery workshop in the centre of Sant Antoni, has made a huge contribution to the artisan jewellery scenario of the island. Production is prolific with unique rings made from precious metals and stones, pendants portraying figures from local mythology, bracelets with ground-breaking designs, jewels, and pieces, all individually designed… La Bijouterie Ibiza creates a wide range of pieces, brimming with creativity and exquisite care to detail.
If we’re thinking about places with a long craft tradition, the place to go would be the village of Sant Rafel. Sant Rafel has been declared a place of interest for crafts and is known for the added value and contributions made to the craft movement by the work of ceramicists and potters such as Kinoto, Carlos Icardi, Miguel Angel Ratto and Julio Bauzá, with some of these artists opening their workshops to the public. Furthermore, in summer the Sant Rafel Craft Fair brings together a host of stands, where artisans of every kind exhibit their work, clothes, accessories, decoration, … it’s a joy for anyone interested in handmade creations.
However, handmade in Sant Antoni is in no way confined to crafts alone. There is the agricultural sector as well, where you can find a whole range of producers making natural products at km 0. This is the case of Ses Cabretes cheese, the brainchild of Pilar González and Fina Prats, which is made at their organic farm Can Fontet. In 2014, they created a product with the idea of reviving production of the cheese that was traditionally made in the country farmsteads of the island, using milk from the local breed of goats, and infused with the wild artichoke that gives it its characteristic taste. With its mild, cured or semi-cured versions, Ses Cabretes cheese has made a name for itself in Ibizan kitchens.
The Sant Antoni markets are another essential visit to discover natural artisan made products. From the farmer’s market in the village centre, to the Agricultural Cooperative’s market in camí de Sa Vorera or that of Forado, local markets are the perfect showcase for 0 km produce, harvested and made naturally and locally.
While we’re talking about food, it is essential to mention the work of brands such as Can Rich. Now a well-established local producer, Can Rich makes organic and sparkling wines, liqueurs, oils vinegars and salts using raw materials that are exclusively local. Their organic approach is the basis of their activity, and it is this that characterises their catalogue of products, which is in constant expansion.
Other initiatives, such as Sabors d’Eivissa and Peix Nostrum, are yet another example of a clear commitment to sustainable artisanal food products on the island. Both brands were created to promote and showcase farm produce and fish products, guaranteeing their quality and ensuring traceability. Today in Sant Antoni, artisan products have become, through their own merit, premium quality products par excellence.