Inside Stitch The official Vera Bradley blog

A Safari Adventure

In June, our Co-founder Barbara Bradley Baekgaard went on the trip of a lifetime – a 2-week African safari, with her daughter, son-in-law and 3 grandchildren.

Barbara chose a Weekender in Ellie Blue and a Large Duffel and Backpack in Canyon for her trip. The family flew from New York City to Dubai, where they spent one day before heading to Nairobi, Kenya.

The weather was cool and pleasant, making for perfect conditions for exploring by Jeep. According to Barbara, the group was most taken with the people of Kenya and the wildlife they encountered.

Towards the end of her trip, Barbara was thrilled to visit a village and local school, where she gave all of the students colorful Vera Bradley pencils.

These beautiful images of the breathtaking landscapes, faces and local wildlife prove just how majestic an African adventure can be.

Barb's African Adventure

Barb's African Adventure

Barb's African Adventure

Barb's African Adventure

Barb's African Adventure

Barb's African Adventure

Barb's African Adventure

Barb's African Adventure

Barb's African Adventure

Barb's African Adventure

Barb's African Adventure

Barb's African Adventure

Barb's African Adventure

Barb's African Adventure

22 Comments

  • Nan Walvoord says:

    Awesome!!! What a great trip. This takes the phrase “Where in the world is Vera?” to a whole new level. Look at the colors of Canyon with the people and the surroundings? BEAUTIFUL!!!!!

  • Chris B says:

    I agree with the comment above. The people look amazing in the way they dress. And Vera Bradley adds the perfect touch!! The fact that someone went over there and spread even little things like pencils is beyond great! It is kind and what makes Vera Bradley that much more lovable!!!

  • Connie Douty says:

    I am proud to carry any Vera Bradley creation because these pictures reveal kindness and the worldwide interest the company has. The beautiful way these people dress, enhanced by your colorful designs, are one of the reasons I am proud to carry any piece. Gorgeous piectures of the natives make the world a bit smaller and I hope, more unified.

  • Jill Flewitt says:

    What gorgeous pictures. It is awesome that Ms. Baekgaard brightened the day of the kids. Wonderful how a gesture that seems small speaks volumes. Bless you and your family Ms. Baekgaard

  • Julie Lester says:

    What a fabulous experience! The people are beautiful as well as the landscape! Thanks for sharing about Barbara’s adventure!

  • Kristen says:

    I’m sorry, but it seems weird that she had them pose with the bags. And … pencils? This whole post just leaves me with a bad taste.

    • a Different Kristen says:

      I agree, did they locals understand what they were posing for? Did they get to keep the bags they posed with? I think food and medicine would haven been more helpful than pencils…

      • Vera gal or former Vera gal? says:

        I also agree with both Kristens. Were the locals compensated for their ‘modeling’ of Vera’s new line? (chosen not by cooincidence, I’m sure…) These are stunning photos, and it’s great to have such a wonderful trip. Possibly the whole thing IS just a cooincidence, but it doesn’t strike me that way, just a perfect marketing ploy. I’m sure the children did enjoy the pencils, but again, it seems almost vulgar to mention that in the light of all the truly helpful things that could have been given.

    • Guest says:

      I agree Kristen.

    • Lynnie says:

      Amen to everything you just wrote!

  • Deezee says:

    Actually, there are a LOT of regulations involving transporting food and medicine over international borders. Pencils are what my Peace Corps friends always asked for — they’re great for schoolchildren and often very scarce. Let’s assume the bags were donated!! Why would they want to drag all that luggage home when they probably had gorgeous things to buy there?

  • Eskie says:

    I agree with both Kristens. This is in really bad taste and stinks of colonialism. Why do a photo shoot of VB products like this? This is making me question ever buying VB products.

  • Heather says:

    Guys, the woman took her family on VACATION. She can do whatever she wants on vacation, right? It was not a mission trip. Y’all know VB supports many causes as a company, and I am sure the family does privately as well. But, you know what, if they don’t, that is OK too – it’s their life.

  • The 2nd Kristen says:

    I stand by my earlier comment, a family vacation is one thing, exploitating people for your company’s gain is another.

  • Eskie says:

    I stand by my previous comment as well. A family vacation is fine, but having the indigenous population pose like they are props to promote your product is tacky.

    • Deezee says:

      I am certain that this location was a re-enactment village. Locals do not go around carrying spears and wearing ironed, sparkling white aprons over traditonal outfits. It’s patronizing and racist to assume Africans walk around dressed like that, posing for photos with tourists.

      • Lynnie says:

        This is definately not a re-enactment village, there are people in Africa that do still believe in their old, beautiful traditions. I think it is tacky for Vera Bradley to take photos of their products with the indigenous peoples and act like it’s anything but a marketing ploy.

        • Deezee says:

          As you noted, there ARE indigenous people — but they usually aren’t hanging around tourist sites! Besides, how was it a marketing ploy? A blog that is read by people who already are devoted fans?

    • Victoria says:

      I feel the negative comments about exploiting the African people for company gain is absolutely ridiculous!!! The African culture obviously has its own flair for color and fashion…I find adding the Vera Bradley products to their shared family photos are just plain fun! If anything, it gives some insight as to how the Vera Bradley brand follows fashion trends and colors from all around the world when creating its own color design and patterns. I find the photos quite beautiful and the lovely folks don’t seem to mind having their picture taken one bit!

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