Archive for September, 2009

The lovely Kate over at Only Fair has very kindly featured me in her new guest blogger series – so if you want to know how to find the perfect gift, hop on over to her blog now!


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I have an obsession with travelling. I don’t get to do it nearly as much as I’d like, but I think about it ALL the time. Then recently I happened upon Fair Trade Holidays, a way of travelling that truly does give something back, and I did a little dance.

Run by Traidcraft, in collaboration with Saddle Skedaddle (what a fabulous name that is!), ‘Meet the People Tours’ are quite possibly the most worthwhile way and reason to travel beside ‘staycationing’ (if we must use ridiculous words like that). I am of the firm belief that the world is an intriguing, wonderful place, and that learning about other cultures and people is crucial for developing understanding and peaceful relationships.  And obviously, doing what I do means I have a vested interest in Fair Trade.Peru 210808 065 cropped(1)

‘Meet the People’ tours allow small groups of likeminded travellers to visit the communities who are directly benefiting from Fair Trade. There are trips to South East Asia, Latin America, Africa, India and Sri Lanka, all offering a first hand look into the lives and work of the people who produce the coffee on the supermarket shelves and the handcrafted items in our homes. They take in sites of cultural interest and include homestays so you really are a part of things.

Things that sound too good to be true generally are in my experience, and I guess the one downside of all this goodness is the price. These trips are not cheap, but perhaps testament to their success is the amount of people who go back again and again. And you can guarantee it’ll be the trip of a lifetime.

As they say on their Facebook page:

If you’re interested in fair trade & are looking for an opportunity to meet the people behind the products, see the impact of fair trade & Traidcraft’s work, fighting poverty through trade, then these holidays are for you.

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We have a new supplier! Helen Sinden is an artist based in Brighton, East Sussex who has been working with wood for fifteen years. She graduated from the University of Brighton in 1994 with a degree in three dimensional design, and now makes automata and beautiful chunky boxes from reclaimed wood.box02

We are very pleased to be stocking a selection of Helen’s boxes. Each one is carefully crafted, sometimes with words stamped on the front, given a soft wash of paint which is then distressed, and embellished with gorgeous little hand carved wooden hearts, birds and flowers. Inside, Helen lines the boxes with fragments from vintage maps.box01detail

Helen says ‘Creating a new and engaging object from the recycled, discarded wood I collect is its own inspiration along with a love of quirky objects and folk art’. She takes inspiration from the seaside town she lives in – the natural hues of the pebbles and sand, the delicate paintwork on weather worn boats and wooden beach huts, the pastels of flavoured ice cream.box08two

Each piece is a one off – once it’s gone, it’s gone! Nip over to the website now to see the delicious selection we have for you!

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