Posts tagged ‘Springfield, MO’

The end of a chapter

The last couple of months have been pretty difficult for Global Fayre (meaning for David and Cheri).

We had realized towards the end of last year that we were struggling to cope with the store itself and all of the other activities that Global Fayre required of us, PLUS raising our two daughters PLUS Cheri being a Doula PLUS David doing his own stuff (what is that exactly?!)

We brought someone in to help at the store (Sophie was a great help and a real asset to the team) but by the time we got to the Spring of 2011 the message had firmly sunk in. We didn’t have the resources (financial, physical and emotional) to make the store work as well as it should or as well as we wanted it to.

So in May we took the decision to close the store itself, but to leave the door open to continue with fair trade talks, outside events at local churches and the online store.

Announcing the closure, and dealing with the customer/friend reaction was truly bitter/sweet. People had some very kind words to say, and we really felt appreciated, but then to feel the process take its own momentum; after all, stores open and close all the time, and we are just one of many. An inventory sale seamlessly turned in to a closing sale, with some very loyal customers getting the “one thing” that they had been wanting for a very long time but could never afford or justify. That was very satisfying to see.

We weren’t prepared for how emotionally draining the last two weeks would be; we lost count of the number of times we had “that” conversation about why we were closing, how we would be missed etc etc. Of course, person #200 means it just as much as the person #1 – so you try hard to have the conversation, yet again.

So the store is closed, and we were preparing for life after downtown Global Fayre…..and then David had a very interesting telephone conversation……..

 

June 10, 2011 at 19:51 5 comments

Shona Sculptures from Zimbabwe

We just delivery of our first piece of Shona Sculpture from our friends at Venture Imports.

Serpentine is the stone most commonly used by the Shona Carvers;  Shona ranges in hardness from 2.0 to 5.5 on “Mohs Scale of Hardness.” It has a huge range of color variations, but most pieces will have some brown, green or black in them.

Our first piece is this beautiful “Kissing Couple” in natural stone.

 

Jennie from Venture Imports describes the carving process this way:

“The artists chip, chisel, sand and then wet-sand each piece. (Before sandpaper, artists would use river sand and a rag in their hands to smooth out the pieces.) Then they place the piece around, or in some cases actually in, a fire. They finish by putting floor polish on the heated piece which sinks into the piece and brings out the natural colors of the stone and makes it shiny. They keep reapplying the floor wax (they use Cobra wax, I use Johnson paste wax) until the surface cools. Then they buff it with a cloth which makes it nice and shiny.”

Jennie also explains how the carvers learn their craft:

“Most of the artists have no formal training, but they often learn as apprentices under a master sculptor. They begin by washing and polishing the master’s pieces and then start working on small pieces of their own. Some of the artists work in cooperatives which is a fun site to see. They are so quick and sing and talk while they chip away.”

More pieces will arrive soon, and will be added to our online store.

February 5, 2011 at 13:18 Leave a comment

“Autumn” By the children of the Parents’ Cooperative Preschool

Parents’ Cooperative Preschool, Inc. presents a fantastic display of Autumn inspired artwork created by it’s students. PCPS (a non-profit organization) has been serving children ages two and a half through five and their families for over 30 years. The cooperative concept brings parents of our students into the classrooms on a regular basis, thus becoming an integral part of the child’s first formal learning experience. Through this hands-on experience, parents begin to realize more clearly the pleasures of childhood and the challenges of parenthood. For more information on PCPS please visit Parentscoop.org

Find out more in general about November’s art walk at http://www.ffaw.org

We’re delighted to be hosting en exhibition of work by these children (of course, we’re just a little bit biased since our youngest daughter is one of them!)

 

November 4, 2010 at 23:25 Leave a comment

“Art through a Lens” at Global Fayre

We’re just starting to get everything together for September’s exhibit.

“Art through a Lens” will feature work from some of the members of the Southwest Missouri Club.

Club members come from all walks of life, with varying degrees of photographic experience – from the novice to the professional and everything in between. The most important aspect of the organization is its members. They learn from each other by sharing their photographic experiences and skills.

The exhibition will open during the First Friday Art Walk on September 3rd.

August 14, 2010 at 17:26 Leave a comment

It’s Memorial Day Weekend!

If you are on our email e-blast list, you will already know that you can get 25% discount on any single item on Saturday and Monday (YES – you can come back again and get the discounts on both days!). If you are NOT on our e-blast list, you should be….sign up by clicking here!

May 27, 2010 at 19:39 Leave a comment

Fair Trade market baskets from Ghana

We just got a new batch of Bolga baskets from Ghana. The full size ones were a mixture of the traditional leather handles and the cloth-handled ones that we started having made last year for our vegan customers.

The baby Bolga baskets all had leather handles – we’re still waiting for our first batch of cloth-handled ones.

We’ll add a selection of the baskets to our online store in the next day or so.

I had a very special helper when it was time to shape them….

March 31, 2010 at 19:08 1 comment

It’s Earth Hour!

On Earth Hour hundreds of millions of people, organizations, corporations and governments around the world will come together to make a bold statement about their concern for climate change by doing something quite simple—turning off their lights for one hour. In the U.S. where we are already feeling the impacts of climate change, Earth Hour sends a clear message that Americans care about this issue and want to turn the lights out on dirty air, dangerous dependency on foreign oil and costly climate change impacts, and make the switch to cleaner air, a strong economic future and a more secure nation.

Participation is easy. By flipping off your lights on March 27th at 8:30 p.m. local time you will be making the switch to a cleaner, more secure nation and prosperous America. View the toolkits, to find out what else you can do to get involved including leading the Earth Hour movement in your community.

Set Your Clock

On Saturday, March 27, 2010 at 8:30 p.m. local time, Earth Hour will once again cascade around the globe, from New Zealand to Hawaii

Sparking a Movement

Since its inception three years ago, Earth Hour’s non-partisan approach has captured the world’s imagination and became a global phenomenon. Nearly one billion people turned out for Earth Hour 2009 – involving 4,100 cities in 87 countries on seven continents.

Last year, 80 million Americans and 318 U.S. cities officially voted for action with their light switch, joining iconic landmarks from around the world that went dark for Earth Hour, including:

  • Empire State Building
  • Brooklyn Bridge
  • Broadway Theater Marquees
  • Las Vegas Strip
  • United Nations Headquarters
  • Golden Gate Bridge
  • Seattle’s Space Needle
  • Church of Latter-Day Saints Temple
  • Gateway Arch in St. Louis
  • Great Pyramids of Giza
  • Acropolis and Parthenon in Athens
  • Christ the Redeemer Statue in Rio de Janeiro
  • St. Peter’s Basilica in Vatican City
  • Big Ben and Houses of Parliament in London
  • Elysee Palace and Eiffel Tower in Paris
  • Beijing’s Birds Nest and Water Cube
  • Symphony of Lights in Hong Kong
  • Sydney’s Opera House

March 27, 2010 at 00:55 Leave a comment

One example of reconstruction in Haiti; a strategic plan to save 500 artisan jobs

Recent events in Haiti has prompted Global Fayre to step up its level of commitment to the artisans of that country (we talked previously about the need for sustained support in the long term as well as short term crisis relief).

As a result of our search for new sources, we came across Caribbean Craft.

Based in Port-au-Prince, Haiti, Caribbean Craft was founded in 1990 by young Dutch and Belgian entrepreneurs who wanted to address Haiti’s high unemployment with artisan training, design assistance and new export market outlets. In 2006 Caribbean Craft became a Haitian women owned company.

They encourage their artisans to work in a sustainable way with recycled products.  As you would expect, a large part of their output is concentrated on the highly original and internationally renowned “oil drum art”, made from recycled steel drums.  They also use paper maché made from empty cement bags and starch made from locally grown, renewable arrowroot to create beautiful and festive ornaments, money or “piggy” banks, serving trays, and other useful creations. They even produce their own glue from the starch of locally grown manioc and use plastic bottles and gallon containers.

Prior to the January earthquake, Caribbean Craft employed over 300 people in Port-au-Prince and another 200 artisans in the regions. The earthquake rendered their rented premises too dangerous to use, leaving these 500 artisans on the street (literally, in many cases, with their houses also being destroyed).

Far from being knocked back by this, Caribbean Craft quickly responded by putting together a short term plan to get their people back to work as quickly as possible, as well as a longer term plan to build their own facility capable of withstanding future earthquakes.

You can read the whole plan here.

We got our first consignment of products from Caribbean Craft last week. The pieces are beautiful, and response to them has been great!

Here are a few examples:

March 6, 2010 at 18:24 Leave a comment

First Friday at Global Fayre; introducing Carl James, Photographer-Architect

Carl is a relative newcomer to Global Fayre; we started carrying his book Aux Arcs at the end of last year.He will join us for First Friday to sign his book and to launch our exhibition of some of thephotographs from the book.


The thing I love about photography is that it sharpens my visual and emotional sensitivity to the world around me. The camera lens acts as a conduit to see beyond the mundane and focus on the beautiful interplay of light and space


Carl enjoys exploring symbolism and surrealism created through digital manipulation.

He has seriously pursued photography for the past 10 years. He is a member of the Southwest Missouri Camera Club, the Springfield Visual Arts Alliance and the Springfield Regional Arts Council. Carl’s achievements include various awards in juried competitions in the Southwest Missouri Camera Club and Juror’s Choice Awards and in Springfield Visual Art Alliance juried competitions.

March 4, 2010 at 12:30 Leave a comment

First Friday at Global Fayre……presenting John Long!

We’re really fortunate to have John Long join us for February’s First Friday Art Walk.

John Long was born in St. Louis, Missouri in 1950 & was first exposed to the music he’d make his life’s work not long after. By the late 1950s John was absorbing the sounds of Homesick and Elmore James, Jimmy Reed, Buster Brown, Muddy Waters, Lightnin’ Hopkins, Junior Parker, and all the rest of the R&B and jump blues of the day, & working on recreating those sounds with his own guitar.

On Lost & Found, his debut album on Delta Groove Records, John Long stunningly re-created the sound of a pre-war country blues player, right down to the little Tommy Johnson-like upward vocal swoops he takes at the end of phrases.

Details:

Where: Global Fayre, 324 S Campbell Ave, Springfield, MO 65806

When: Feb 5th, 6pm onwards

Admission: Free (donations welcome, all proceeds will go to the Global Fayre Kiva Loan Fund)

For more information about the First Friday Art Walk, go to http://www.ffaw.org

February 2, 2010 at 17:31 Leave a comment

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