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Saturday, November 27, 2010

Update on Fair Trade Christmas

Well, I must confess that Black Friday deals did get me off track a bit for my Fair Trade Christmas plan.  I can just about guarantee that a few purchases were far from fair trade.  I got caught up in the sales, the ads, the frenzy of it all.  At some point during the day, it hit me just how far off the mark I had gone.  Fair trade hadn't even crossed my mind until that point.

So, today I went to check out Global Village in Peoria Heights.  It is a fair trade treasure trove!  I did not realize until I went there that the focus of the store is fair trade!  In case you are thinking that fair trade is more expensive--think twice!  I found a lot of reasonable prices.  What can you get there?  Chocolate, coffee, soaps, purses, scarves, decorative objects, linens, musical instruments, dog collars, cards, mittens, clothes...  LOTS of things.  The cool thing is (in addition to them being fair trade) many of them are one of a kind.  You can get a truly unique gift there!  If you are looking for anything that has a plug-in or screen, you will not find it there.  Though, they do have some baskets woven from telephone wires in Africa...  It is neat that you can see what country most items were made in.  My daughter picked out a gift for a friend's birthday while there--a really cute kid's purse made in Guatemala.  Global Village is a small shop chock full of really neat items!  A great stop for holiday shopping that can make a big difference!

One of the biggest challenges in shopping fair trade is for toys.  The best I know of are some European toy companies with good reputations for making safe toys.  Does anyone know of some good resources for fair trade toy shopping (that are also made from safe materials)?  If so, please clue me in!

I'll keep you posted!

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