Posts tagged ‘Global fayre’
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……..
We don’t carry many glass products, partly because one of our closest downtown neighbors is a glass blower (if you ever visit Springfield, aside from coming to Global Fayre, you should make sure to check out Terry and Gabe’s work at Springfield Hot Glass.
But when we saw these beautiful pendants, we just couldn’t resist.
The maker is a woman from Coapango, Guerrero in southern Mexico, Guadalupe Ramos Rios. Our source, Tom Costello tells us that “As far back as the stories go, and as far back as Ms. Ramos Rios can remember, her parent’s parent’s parent’s were artisans who made dresses, shoes, chairs, flatware, jewelry, and other items for everyday use and for personal dress. I have worked with three generations of her family. Every pendant has six components. When the chain or necklace are counted, that makes seven. We christened them “Cloud 9″ because of there light, floating colors and designs.”
For the moment, we are selling them only in our store at 324 S Campbell, Springfield, MO – but in a few weeks we will add them to our online store.
They have arrived just in time for Valentines Day – and to celebrate, we are giving away a Fair Trade Rose with every purchase from Feb 10 to Feb 14.
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.
Over the past few years, an ever growing number of products have gained Fair Trade certification in the US (Fair Trade Certification is usually given via TransFair USA).
As a retail store with limited space (we have around 1,000 sq feet of retail space) we’re always faced with the dilemma of whether or not we can take new product lines as they become available on a Fair Trade basis; not only because they are great products, but also because we know what a difference they will make to the communities that they come from.
Sometimes though, the products shout SO LOUD that we just have to make room for them. Which is a long way round to saying that we have just ordered our first delivery of Fair Trade Roses – just in time for Valentines Day. Fair Trade flowers have been available in the US for a couple of years now, but so far do not seem to have made the inroads that everyone had hoped for. Why not? A few reasons spring to mind; too far removed from the other lines that Fair Trade retailers carry, not enough margin for conventional florists to carry them……
So we figured that we should at least try. We’re just ordered a bunch (pun intended) from One World Flowers – due to arrive on Feb 10th.
Here’s what One World has to say about Fair Trade flowers and themselves:
One World Flowers and Fair Trade
One World Flowers believes in supporting sustainable business practices, human rights compliance, and fair compensation for workers in countries all over the world. We started our company to do just that by offering beautiful Fair Trade Certified™ flowers in the United States. Suppliers of agricultural products are often pressured by American and European companies to lower costs in order to keep prices low for consumers. Many people don’t realize that because of this, hundreds of thousands of workers in South America, Asia, and Africa are exposed to physical, mental, and sexual abuse each day at work. In the floral industry, most of these workers are women who are not paid fairly for the long hours they are sometimes forced to work. In addition, workers are not given protective gear to wear when dealing with the dozens of harmful chemicals that are used to grow flowers. As a result, many of their children are stillborn or have major birth defects. Fair Trade is changing all of this!
Fair Trade Certification means farms that grow flowers are given a fair price for their produce, workers enjoy safe working conditions, fair living wages are paid to workers, and environmentally friendly growing practices are used. It is a commitment made by each company in the supply chain to maintain higher standards in our business practices, even if it costs a little more. In short, everyone can benefit from Fair Trade from the worker in the field, to the company that owns the farm, the environment, and even you!
One World Flowers is a TransFair USA licensed importer and distributor of Fair Trade Certified™ flowers. We currently sell our beautiful wholesale flowers to customers throughout the United States including individuals, grocers, florists, and co-op markets. We are expanding quickly, and are always looking for people and busineses to partner with who share our passion for Fair Trade and corporate social responsibility. If we are not yet in your area, we’d love for you to request One World Fair Trade flowers from your local florist.
We strive to be the market leader in Fair Trade Certified™ flowers by educating consumers about Fair Trade practices, and how to be aware of the human rights violations that happen every day in the global supply chain. One World Flowers doesn’t just want to sell flowers; we want to make a world of difference.
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!)
Kim Peterson stays busy creating art and chasing her two young daughters with her husband. She likes to think of herself as an eclectic being, so she also spends her time obsessing over music, reading, being passionate about politics, and writing freelance articles for the Ozarks Moms Like Me Magazine. Kim grew up in Tacoma, Wa but has lived in Upstate New York, Wyoming and eventually landed in in the Ozarks three years ago. She now calls Springfield home.
Kim says she “likes the idea of playing with the things that people do, what they think and dream. The unmentionable acts hidden by the subconscious or a spy like quickness. People are afraid to let others know who they really are. Hiding in plain sight is what we, as people, do everyday.” The pieces being viewed will be her interpretation of this concept.
This is Kim’s debut showing at Global Fayre and First Friday Art Walk. To see more of her work, you can visit “Kim’s Eclectic” on facebook.
Find out what else is happening on First Friday here.
Check out the latest with Global Fayre here.
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.