So I have recently been to the slums of Kenya and just the other day I got back from the Dominican Republic. [I plan to write more about those travel experiences later]. If there is one thing I can emphasize from my recent travels it is that there are people in these places, and all over the world, who need opportunities for work. Think about it: working gives you something to do during the day, it allows you to provide for your self and your family, it empowers you to achieve your goals. Having sustainable work provides hope for individuals and communities, and ultimately provides more jobs that help stop the cycle of poverty.
In Ghana 40% of the population lives on less than $1 per day. That is less than $365 in 1 year. Or less than $3650 in a whole decade.
It is Mawu Lolo's mission to play a part in ending the cycle of poverty in Ghana. How are they doing that you might ask?
For the past 15 years Globeserve has joined forces to establish two schools there. One of the schools is a preparatory school that educates 500+ kids. The other is a vocational school that has been focused on sewing and dressmaking for unwed mothers who are at risk of turning to prostitution for work. (After graduating the program, they get a sewing machine to take home to continue their practice.)
A recent expansion of this program is sandal making through Mawu Lolo! The women in this program are given a chance to learn a skill that has the potential to change the path of their lives and offer them and their villages stability. Mawu Lolo hopes that after the artisans graduate the program they can continue their trade in their villages and take steps toward ending the cycle of poverty by having a means to provide for themselves and their families.
And y'all, these sandals are amazing. The Elinam is the two strap cork bed shoe. This one is unisex. It is a classic style and the pop of color is perfect for the spring and summer!
The Suborsubor has three straps over the front of the foot and a leather strap for support around the ankle. I love how different this style is, and the purple pink and white color is my absolute FAV. These shoes have done me well on this little spring break vacation!!
We are ending January in the DFW with perfect weather: SUNNY&&75. I honestly can't get enough of this sunshine. It has been the perfect week to start spring a little early, and whip out my Luxe Tank Dress that I got from Ethos Collection.
Shop the Winter Collection SALE and get an extra 10% off using our code:
Ethos Collection is the ideal curation of items from a variety of brands who share the common mission of respecting people and the planet. Ethos Collection is a place where you can find "the best of the ethical best," ESPECIALLY when searching out ethical apparel.
Tops, bottoms, dresses, outerwear and accessories. They've got you covered from head to toe with timeless pieces made of quality material.
Additionally, Ethos Collection makes it a priority to support Kiva. Kiva is a non-profit that helps provide loans to people who may otherwise not have the opportunity.
Through Kiva's microfinance institutions, Ethos Collection is currently supporting a woman named Archana. Archana has a garland making business and desires to make enough garlands to sell in the local market. In order to buy the materials to make garlands for the market, she needs capital to grow and expand her business. When you buy from Ethos Collection, you are directly supporting Archana and helping her take a step towards a better future for herself and her family!
All of the brands we share with you here on the blog have the same end goal in mind. That goal is to allow shoppers to make a difference with their purchase. Whether it is through the fair trade model, using ethically sources materials, or companies with a social mission, everyone on this platform is aiming to make this world a better place through their business.
Love Justly is the brand we are introducing to you today. They encompass all of the various models of conscious shopping AND still manage to give YOU, as the shopper, an affordable and discounted price.
Love Justly is a marketplace for discounted ethical fashion! They have partnered with a number of organizations who can use the Love Justly platform to showcase the amazing work of their artisans. The products that are featured on Love Justly are constantly in rotation, so in order to stay up to date I would recommend adding yourself to their Newsletter.
Not only does Love Justly partner with companies who have a mission to make an impact and not only do they share stories of hope through the artisans who have made their products. Love Justly also supports Legacy Collective, who focuses on ensuring that money is properly spent to help those in need.
Love justly has not forgotten about the consumer. They have made it more affordable for you to shop and still make an impact with your purchase.
Act justly, love mercy, and walk humbly.
That is the heart <3 behind Love Justly.
Traveling is definitely a hobby of mine.
So far, I have made it to Uganda, India, Guatemala, Honduras, Costa Rica, and Peru. Next stop on my list is the Dominican Republic, and I may even make my way to Kenya! For anyone who travels, you know that it is IMPORTANT to have essential travel clothes.
To qualify as a good travelling outfit it must meet the following requirements:
2. Material that is not too hot or too thin
3. Easy to move around in
4. Cute and stylish
MATTER is a socially motivated brand that has mastered the travelling outfit for the globetrotting woman.
I can say that these pants meet my travel attire requirements, and will be in my suitcase for my next adventure. Their travel wear is created by artisans around the world and each piece has a story to tell. With a mission to inspire consumers to ask why and where somethings is made, MATTER champions alternative production models so that artisans in Asia can expand their economic opportunities.
MATTER embraces a philosophy of SLOW. By incorporating slow style, slow production, and slow design, MATTER is able to produce quality pieces with an intentional process that ultimately cultivates a better world for us all.
We are getting ready to go back to Uganda for our camp with Reaction Tour later this month. Being able to travel with Reaction Tour has given me some perspective and a real view of the poverty that exists in this world today. Every time I visit areas that have large amounts of underprivileged communities I am reminded why Narrow Collective is so essential! We get to share companies and products that all have one common purpose. And that purpose is to make a positive impact on the world! With that in mind, we are sharing a new brand with you today that just launched this year!
Seek Wander Share is an ethically-sourced shop that is made up of a collection of handmade pieces for your every day girl. I love my pink scarf and bracelet set, sourced from Guatemala. (Guatemala has a happy place in my heart) It is a versatile set that will add a pop of color to any outfit!
Seek Wander Share partners with artisan groups around the globe and employs them to create products in their collection for a fair wage. At Seek Wander Share modern meets tradition. The artisans use their traditional craftsmanship and processes to craft products that are modern and relevant.
This might just make the PERFECT gift this Holiday Season! Especially with our 15% discount. Code: SWS15 [valid through Dec. 31]
HO HO HO!
It's officially December. Whether you are finally getting around to writing out your Christmas list for your mom or you are beginning to make purchases for your neighborhood gift exchange, holiday office party, or family Christmas celebration, it's time to start thinking about GIFTS.
Many of you, I am sure, are on the hunt to give gifts that have meaning, that empower, that give-back. You know, the kind of gifts that make a difference in someone's life. You've come to the right place!
Threads Worldwide has crafted a wonderful collection of Christmas Gift Sets for Her. Today we are going to be sharing two of these gift bundles that are filled with pieces handcrafted by artisans from Ecuador to Kenya.
The perfect dainty necklace with matching beaded wrap bracelet
The Manda Bracelet is created from glass beads and handmade by deaf women in Kenya. The matching Chone necklace is made of acai seeds and other delicate metals by women like Nancy, a hardworking mother of 3 who was once homeless in Ecuador, but through her endeavors as an artisan has made a way for her family.
The bright and beautiful patterned clutch paired with a simple geometric necklace and coordinating bold earrings
The Peten Clutch is crafted from the fabric of Mayan Blouses and created by women in Guatemala who have gained the respect of the men in their community because of their business. The Baltra Necklace is made from taqua seeds by women like Nancy from Ecuador (same as above). The Betwa Earrings are handcrafted by women like Prema, who was pregnant and widowed in India. Through her work as an artisan, she has been able to send her daughter to primary school.
Threads Worldwide desires to empower women around the world through their business. The women who founded Threads Worldwide travelled all over the world and were absolutely moved by the poverty they experienced among the people. There are 1 BILLION people in the world who are living off of $1 a day. By partnering with artisan cooperatives all over the globe, Threads Worldwide is providing women the opportunity to earn a fair income for their work. This financial independence empowers the artisan women to not only take care of themselves, but also provide for their children and make their dreams a reality.
When you shop the Threads Worldwide website you can read the artisans stories. Your purchase is a part of their story and you can share that with those you are shopping for this Christmas Season!
There is hope that is found in the opportunities created through Elevate.
Elevate is a non-profit company that strives to give artisans around the world the opportunity to make their dreams a reality! This company collaborates with talented national people and walks along side them to help start their own businesses.
We had the opportunity to get our hands on some of their dreamy leather goods from the Eco-leather company that Elevate started. The founders of Elevate met a man named Samuel in South Asia who dreamed of starting a leather business that would provide jobs for the people of his community. And so Elevate was born to walk along side these hard working artisans, to encourage them, and to inspire them. Through their leather work, the artisans can adequately care for their families and pour into the community through various development initiatives!
Start your Christmas shopping early and find great leather gifts for HER or HIM! Jewelry. Wallets. Journals. Belts. You can even wear this Double Wrap as a bracelet, orrrr see it pictured above as the cutest leather choker!
Great quality. Fabulous style. One-of-a-kind clothing. Embracing sustainability one piece at a time. Ankura Brand.
This dreamy fashion line is based out of Peru. They hit all of the major check points every conscious shopper is looking for by sourcing local materials, using natural and organic fibers, working with artisan communities and giving back to the local Peruvian communities!
This piece is a part of the Andean Mod Collection and is called the Georgia Skirt, and let me tell you how well-made it truly is. When I heard that it takes up to 3 days for the artisans in the ancestral community of Caral to hand-make ONE of these babies, I was not surprised. The quality of the skirt is impeccable!
I have had some fun pairing it with different solid color tops, but with this sweater on the streets of NYC is definitely my favorite!
Ankura is launching a crowdfunding project NOVEMBER 4th. You can support this beautifully creative brand and get your hands on some yummy rewards! (including this Georgia Skirt!) Be sure to make time to take a peak at it! Find a way to get involved with this brand!
It's beginning to be that time of year again! The weather is changing and pretty soon the leaves will be falling. We've spent the last couple of days getting out our sweaters, putting on our booties, and changing our coffee orders from iced to hot! Fall is approaching. AND we have the perfect fall accessory to share with you!
These beautiful scarves are hand-dyed by the wonderful ladies in the Maisha Collective, the social enterprise component of the non-profit Heshima Kenya. You can find scarves of all unique color variations and styles! You will find a beautiful statement piece when you shop Heshima Kenya's selection, but let me tell you a little bit about the story behind this amazing brand.
Heshima Kenya is a non-profit organization with a holistic model of refugee protection for women and children from all over East Africa. Many of the young girls Heshima Kenya serves are already mothers, typically as a result of sexual violence and abuse that they have experienced. Through Heshima Kenya's innovative programs, these refugee girls are provided shelter, medical care, education and the opportunity to create income for themselves through the Maisha Collective. About 70% of the 57 artisans in the Maisha Collective have had no formal education prior to joining Heshima Kenya. Through this organization, young refugee women (ages 13-23) gain business and vocational skills that ultimately prepare them for their independent lives that lies ahead for each of them.
Crafted With Passion, Blended With Style
We are still here in India and thankfully we brought our Joggo Bag along with us. Courtney is speaking at The Awakening 2016 Conference with TKT Church. Today she gave a great message on practical ways to pursue your dreams. The Joggo Bag is the perfect messenger bag to bring along a notebook, Bible, and iPad for notes at the conference! It has a very chill and hippy look to accompany its usefulness.
These bags were designed to Journey to Greater Good.
The bags are fair trade made by a woman's co-op in developing countries. The design of the bag is great for many different occasions and you can see the different compartments below!
This company wants to make an impact on this world by donating proceeds to educational initiatives for young people impacted by humanitarian crisis. Over 1/2 of the world's refugees are children. These kids are in need of basic necessities to survive in their new homelands. Joggo Bags partners with CARE Canada, to educate and train refugee children in over 21 different countries!
Join their efforts and check them out here:
Update from India!
Camp #1 with Reaction Tour is over and it was absolutely amazing!!! We are really loving Hyderabad, and getting to experience a lot of Indian culture. I have found a new love for curry since we have been here! Today is the first day of Camp #2!!!!
Yesterday, we got to visit a church and I wanted to share my outfit styled with this Moulin Rouge Necklace, which is made in India and brought to you by, Ten Thousand Villages! I'm sure you can tell, this is the perfect tassel to dress up a simple shirt. And the pearl detail makes it super unique!
This necklace was actually made in New Delhi, India, which is a little north of where are are now! The artisans who created this piece are a part of a social enterprise that allows them to create beautiful jewelry representing their traditional culture. Because of Ten Thousand Villages, this group of artisans has a sustainable market to sell their products in North America.
If you don't already know, now you know that Ten Thousand Villages is a founding member of the World Fair Trade Organization, and have been going after it for 70 years now! They strive to improve the livelihood of tens of thousands of disadvantaged artisans in over 30 countries. Ten Thousand Villages partners with 19 fair trade artisan groups in India alone!
I personally love browsing the Ten Thousand Villages shop off Hulen Street in Fort Worth! This is 1 of over 70 stores nationwide. There are so many beautiful pieces from jewelry to embroidery, metalwork to baskets, kitchen and dining to wall decor. You should go see for yourself!
Shop Ten Thousand Villages here:
Shop online and use the code NARROW25 to receive 25% off 1 regularly priced item! *Excluding Traveler's Finds*
Today is our last day of work before heading to India!!!! Court and I will be sharing our adventures in there and along the way, so stay tuned!
In the mean time, I wanted to tell you about TJULA.
Everyone has a couple of simple and classic white tops that you can mix and match with jeans, skirts, shorts etc. These are so NECESSARY! I've already worn this top to work, dinner with the girls, and shopping!
It's simple. It's good quality. It's unique. It's $42.99. AND It's empowering women!
TJULA Design understands the struggle of wanting to buy quality, ethical, urban-styled products that don't break the bank. They see business as a tool for making a difference and that is why they are using their business to empower women in Cambodia! By working with social enterprises in Cambodia, TJULA is a part of training and developing the skills of these women. A portion of the profit on these products is sent to non-profits whose focus is to further local community development in Cambodia.
TJULA Design sells two other pieces: the Everyday Pants and The Tulip Skirt.
Purse & Clutch... and such
So if you couldn't tell... We kinda like leather. Purse & Clutch has a ton of cute leather pieces from totes to passport holders! All of their product is created by the artisans that they employ and provide fair wages for them. By selling $200 of product, Purse & Clutch can employ an artisan for a month!
Part of our goal with Narrow Collective is to allow people to understand that they don't have to sell all of their things and travel across the world in order to impact the people there. Brands like Purse & Clutch make it easy for you to impact and empower talented artists in developing regions by purchasing a birthday gift or getting that every day cross body bag you've been looking for!
Take a look at this great company! We've been inspired by the Be Brave Pouch. Super cute and perfect size to stick your keys 🔑, phone 📱, sunnies 🕶, and favorite chapstick 💄 in for the day.
ONE SHOE ONE TREE
We have been patiently waiting for these leather shoes to come in! And, let me tell you, they were worth the wait!
Super stylish and perfect for everyday wear. Inkkas Shoes has mastered the tribal, leather combo in their shoes and they have just about any style that you would want. You can get Inkkas in high top, low top, joggers, slip ons, and boots for HIM or HER!
Inkkas Shoes employs their artisans based on fair trade principles in Peru, Columbia, Bolivia, Guatemala, and Mexico. Each shoe is providing jobs for locals in these regions. On top of that, Inkkas partners with TreesForTheFuture to help plant trees in developing countries around the world! This helps improve the lives of farmers in in these developing regions. Inkkas has been able to plant 8,972 trees through their business!
1 PAIR OF SHOES = 1 TREE PLANTED
New Eve Jewelry
We love our pieces from New Eve Jewelry! Read more about the company and the heart behind it from the founder herself, Megan Craig!
I decided to start my business when I graduated college with a job in food service and more free time than I'd ever had. I loved my Toms shoes and the way they combined fashion and mission, and I dreamed of combining my jewelry design skills with service opportunities locally. I loved creating my jewelry with repurposed materials as a symbol of new life, and I wanted to contribute New Eve's time and money to bring new life to the needy in my local community. I had studied linguistics and Hebrew in college so I could be a missionary overseas, and I loved the idea of blessing the mission field in my own backyard. I originally partnered with my local homeless shelter, which offers programs to help break the cycles of addiction and homelessness, and build healthy life skills and job skills. They're such a force for good in our community, so I worked with them for a year, donating 10% of my proceeds and helping teach craft workshops and Bible studies at the shelter. Then I met the founders of the nonprofit I now work with, Feeding the Orphans. I fell in love with their mission to bring homes, food, education, medical care, clean water, and churches to women and children in Ghana. They also bless our local community of at-risk youth by hosting a summer camp in rural East Tennessee. I've been able to help design jewelry for their fair trade line, Esther's Hope, that employs single mothers in Ghana. I'm also thankful to be able to donate 10% of New Eve's proceeds to their ministry.
I love being able to make jewelry that makes my customers feel beautiful, encourages them with Scripture, and brings them alongside my mission to help those in need locally and globally.
This is the clean, comfy, and classy everyday watch that everyone NEEDS! It goes with everything and is the perfect weight. I absolutely love the look, and the added bonus of the interchangeable leather bands.
TUK Watches was started in 2013 by a young girl in Austin, Texas with a vision to #WatchChangeHappen by selling these perf watches. With every watch purchased, TUK is donating $20 to help provide clean drinking water for the remote villages and schools of Cambodia.
"There is no better way to represent the urgency of time behind the water crisis than with a watch. "
TUK Watches donates to an organization called Resource Development International. TUK recently sent a team to Cambodia to work directly with the water projects in the villages there! TUK is doing amazing work. Next time you need to get a gift for someone, or give yourself a little treat, get a TUK Watch! You won't regret it.
PLUS, you can get $10 off your purchase by using the code NC10. This code is valid for a limited time only!
Radiate Market has linked two problems and created a solution!
1. How we consume is not sustainable.
2. There are talented artisans all over the world who do not have secure jobs to support their families.
Radiate market aims to end poverty by supplying artisans in developing regions with a consistent market to sell their goods. This is a for-profit business that is seeking to empower their artisans by allowing them to celebrate and preserve their culture through business experiences with a greater market. Radiate Market wants everyone, consumers and creators, to have the freedom to RADIATE their true selves.
What will you radiate??
We say that we will radiate CHANGE! Everything we do, from Narrow Collective to Reaction Tour... We want to see change in this world! That's why we love what Radiate Market is doing! You can radiate change too by shopping Radiate Market Here! Use the code NarrowCollective to get FREE shipping on your order!
Given: a wonderful market place enabling us all to use our purchasing power for good!
The first thing I noticed about Given, was the fact that it was run by 4 sisters. Each of these ladies desires that each purchase will empower and sustain various artisans around the world through partners who are creating opportunities! They have tapped in on the fact that purchasing items, whether for yourself or as a gift for others, is a huge opportunity to support great causes that really do impact the world. Kinda just like us! Great minds think alike, ya know.
At Given-goods.com you can find a thoughtful collection of socially conscious goods, from clothing to shoes to kids. This collection comes from their many ethically minded partners.
Given has so kindly offered a great giveaway for our following! Check out our instagram for entry rules. You could win this great Given shirt, the Mara Market Bag, and the Classic Fighting Hunger necklace!
On top of that, you can purchase anything from Given-Goods.com and use the code GIVEN20 to receive 20% off your entire purchase!!!!
Shop Here: Given-Goods.com
Nisolo: Not Alone
Sometimes when you find brands that give back, you notice a drop in quality. For me, that was the first thing I noticed WAS NOT the case with Nisolo's amazing merchandise. Their shoes and accessories are AMAAAAZING. And they aren't only for girls- their line for men is excellent as well.
They have an amazing website and I pulled some snippets direct that I thought were simply impressive:
"At Nisolo, we view our social impact in two ways: game changing and life changing..."
"We operate a hand-up model that empowers makers in emerging economies by connecting them to the global marketplace in a responsible manner."
"For our producers, we facilitate international market access, pay above fair trade wages, offer skills training, and provide safe working conditions. The result? >> Consistent employment, an average income increase of 300% per producer, improved living conditions, inaugural access to education and savings, and above all, dignity and empowerment."
I picked out some of my favorite items from their website (obviously this cute sandal being m favorite)!