09
Nov 16

2016 Holiday Gift Guide

2016-Holiday-Gift-GuideNeed help with your gift list?  Check out some of our suggestions for the personalities in your life. Also to help you, we will include special TLC gift packaging for each jewelry item you purchase during this busy holiday season.

sbz02For the Romantics, we suggest our new Stocking Stuffer on unique Gift Rounds packaging. We also have them in colors for the Wine LoversNature GirlsBeachcombers, and Free Spirits.  

 

bfcwFor the Socially Conscious, give one of our Do Good Cause Bracelets which help support special projects – Beads for Learning, Beads for Clean Water, Beads for Healthy Gardens, or Beads for Girls Graduation.

 

MarulaThe natural Beauties in your life will love our wild-harvested, cold-pressed Marula Facial Oil with high concentration of antioxidants and fatty acids, Omega 6 and 9.

 

zgcefallEven Super Heroes sometimes need positive encouragement and inspiration to Dream Big,  Live Free, Create Harmony, Go With the Flow, or Follow Your Heart.  Limited Edition Super Power Bracelets are a fun reminder.

 

bread-board

What do you give those gracious Hosts who love to entertain? Any of our gorgeous, handcrafted Tableware items, such as the Bread & Cheese platters or Salad Tongs, would be a treasured gift.

 

This holiday season, think Fair Trade 1st for your gift list. Buying Fair Trade provides work, allowing individuals to provide the rest for themselves! You can LIKE Fair Trade but nothing happens for thousands of people around the world if you don’t BUY Fair Trade!


11
Oct 16

Fair Trade Myths and Realities

Your Purchase_creates work_builds communitiesOctober is Fair Trade Month! As members of the Fair Trade Federation, we are dedicated to 360° fair trade.  360° means we work with artisans in partnerships built on trust.  It means good wages, safe working conditions, environmental responsibility, and more.  It means our partners are empowered to build strong businesses for their families today – and for generations to come. Do you have any misconceptions about Fair Trade?

Myth: Fair trade is about paying developed world wages in the developing world.

Reality: Wages are designed to provide fair compensation based on the true cost of production, and are not based on North American wage standards. Fair wages are determined by a number of factors, including:

  • The amount of time, skill, and effort involved in production
  • Minimum and living wages where products are made
  • The purchasing power in a community or area
  • Other costs of living in the local context

Myth: Fair trade siphons off American jobs to other countries.

Reality: Fair trade seeks to improve the lives of the poorest of the poor who frequently lack alternative sources of income. Most fair trade craft products stem from cultures and traditions which are not represented in North American production.

Myth: Fair trade is anti-globalization.

Reality: International exchange lies at the heart of fair trade.  360° Fair Trade Organizations seek to maximize the positive elements of globalization that connect people, communities, and cultures through products and ideas. At the same time, they seek to minimize the negative elements that result in lower labor, social, and environmental standards which hide the true costs of production.

Myth: Fair trade is a form of charity.

Reality:  360° fair trade promotes positive and long-term change through trade-based relationships which build self-sufficiency. Its success depends on independent, successfully-run organizations and businesses–not on handouts. While many fair trade organizations support charitable projects in addition to their work in trade, the exchange of goods remains the key element of their work.

Credit: Fair Trade Federation


14
Sep 16

What Emotions Does Autumn Bring?

transition into fallEach new season moves us through a period of change and transformation and evokes different emotions within each of us. Some of us love Autumn and all the cozy times that the cooler weather brings so our Fall Style To Go and Color Duets proclaim the feelings that this season stirs in us: Autumn in New England, Pumpkin Patch, Cashmere Scarf, Golden Hour, Misty Morning View, etc. In the same way, our Fall Unity Bracelets are named for the positive encouragement that some of us need to deal with the shift that signifies the fun of Summer has ended:  Strength, Focus, Thrive, Nurture, etc. And of course, our Super Power bracelets are now in Fall’s beautiful colors, too.

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Whether your emotions about Autumn are warm and fuzzy or lean more to the melancholy, we have some ideas to help you with your transition to the new season:

  1. Plan Something Fun: Every season has unique activities and festive elements to enjoy. So continuing that celebratory mind set helps us focus on appreciating everything the new season offers.
  2. Develop New Goals: “Back to School Time” still resonates with most of us as a clean-slate – full of possibilities. Now is a great time to pursue personal improvement projects. Make sure you add commitments slowly so you don’t get overwhelmed. zgcefall
  3. Organize:  Now is a good time to purge your summer clothing: What do you want to keep for another season and what do you want to donate? Bring out your cooler-weather clothes and make sure they are ready to wear before you need them. 
  4. Think Healthy: The Fall Harvest is here so explore new recipes to include fresh seasonal veggies and fruits. Make sure you continue to get exercise. An active body is an important component to physical, emotional, and mental well-being.
  5. ut152aFind New Activities for Shorter Days: Hobbies or activities that keep us mentally stimulated and bring us joy are great when outdoor activities aren’t as accessible. Explore creative projects or perhaps an online course for fun. We just discovered Coursera a resource for free or inexpensive online courses offered by top universities and organizations worldwide.

 


06
Sep 16

Fair Trade Fairy (Purchasing Activism)

Everyday when I wake up and meet with my Maasai sisters, they all have the same one question – “have you told the people back home about the bracelets so we can get more orders?”28796496822_6114bcf906_k Beadwork here is like hitting the gold mine, but it isn’t possible without orders coming in.  The women, if not beading, usually work extracting the centers of the Marula seeds for oil or work in the shamba (garden/farm), but I haven’t seen the same sense of community and joy than when these women are beading together. The Maasai are known for wearing beautifully ornate beads all over their bodies, and they grew up beading, so for them it’s just second nature.  Like when you and your friends get together and make friendship bracelets or go to camp and make lanyards.  Sitting amongst them when they get an order is wonderful.  On the haziest of days, they can lighten the sky by singing and gossiping and being together, doing what they love.  Many women have told me that they didn’t really have much of a social life before work because they would stay home all day sitting around waiting to milk their cows.  These women so enjoy being able to come together and work with their friends while making money to sustain their new and improved lifestyles. Women are women all over the world, and we need to help our sisters out.  What better way than to do a little shopping?  I order my beads to give as gifts, to flaunt on my wrists, ankles and neck, and even to decorate my room.

So many people want to change the world, and this is one way we can start a ripple effect of change.  Fair Trade has saved these women, and with a simple order, you can be a part of all this amazingness!

**Fair Trade Fairy

We thank you for following along with us on Piper’s (aka Fair Trade Fairy) experience in East Africa. It’s been so enjoyable reading her fresh perspective as she learned more about the reality of Fair Trade and got to personally know some of the women whose lives have improved well beyond what most of us can even imagine! Although you may not be able to meet these women and their families in person, you have the chance to get to know them a little as we continue with our ongoing updates on our Your Purchase Power page! If you haven’t met Naesupat yet, make sure you click here. Stop by often as we will be changing information frequently! 

 

 


29
Aug 16

Fair Trade Fairy (Ripple Effect)

28286328373_49cae5386b_kNow that I have been here for some time, getting to know the ladies and understanding not only their work lives, but also their personal lives, by going to visit their homes and having casual conversation over tea and biscuits, I have truly experienced how much development has come from Fair Trade.  Since I never saw what life was like before, I obviously can’t paint a picture for you reader, but what I can say is that I’ve felt the emotion behind the stories these women so graciously were willing to share with me.  I’ve felt their defeat but was lifted once more by their tales of independence and success.  I’ve bit back tears when they are speaking of life before they had the opportunity of work.  I’ve beamed with them as they proudly display their success and their hope for the future.

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The success here isn’t like the success back home.  When we think of success, we think of having a good office job with a nice house, nice car, latest fashion, and happy family.  When the women here think of success, they think of having their kids, especially their girls, finishing school.  They think of being able to purchase the kind of food they like and the clothes they think are pretty.  They think of eating a balanced meal and a healthy lifestyle.  They think of having confidence in knowing they have control over their lives.  These women know they are successful when more people start working because they are jealous of the working women’s lives improving.  Their meaning of success is so much more than money – it’s a way of life that wouldn’t be possible if not for the work that developed in their community.

**Fair Trade Fairy**

New strand-naming contest on Facebook and Instagram. Winner will be chosen by random so check our feed to find out what you need to do!  Don’t forget to check out Fair Trade Fairy’s designs – the Pied Piper Collection and the rest of The Leakey Collection’s jewelry – and be involved in the success for these women! Your purchase matters.


22
Aug 16

Fair Trade Fairy (Interviews/videos)

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It’s one thing hearing about something incredible, but seeing it, that’s when your view changes completely.  After interviewing a few women around the workshop here and at the shamba (where they grow fruits and produce), I’ve learned that Fair Trade has literally saved their lives.  I didn’t know how to approach the interviews, unsure exactly what to ask so I decided to ask some open ended questions that the women would be able to build off of to help me understand what I should be asking and just to help me understand the change that has gone on here.  I would ask the typical “How long have you worked here” and “what exactly do you do” first, followed by asking how their life has changed from before they had work to now, how their views of themselves have altered and where they saw themselves in five years.  Their responses both broke my heart yet filled it with hope.

28616615260_97b4de73c0_k (1)

All the women here (besides a few young ones) had zero independence before being able to work.  Not in the way they dressed, not in what they could eat, not even how to take care of their children. Everything was somewhat planned for them.  The control laid in the hands of their husbands, which in some cases was almost lethal.  Not because the husbands wanted to harm to their women, but mostly because they didn’t understand the proper needs of these women and what they valued and wanted.  I had many women tell me that before they were able to have jobs, they were hopeless and lacked self confidence, feeling defeated by the world they lived in. But once they had this small control on their lives, it avalanched into control of their whole entire beings.  It really struck me how much Fair Trade has helped them when one woman said with her head held high, “I was able to go from nothing to something.”

**Fair Trade Fairy**

See Your Purchase Power in Action! As part of our continuing feature where you get to know some of our entrepreneurial partners, read part of an interview that Fair Trade Fairy conducted with Kimere Nkuruna here.  And watch the video introducing Kimere and Naesupat here. Come back often to find out exactly what they had to say in their videos. Make sure you also check out Fair Trade Fairy’s designs – the Pied Piper Collection. There’s a new strand this week!


15
Aug 16

Fair Trade Fairy (What it is/ how it works)

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I didn’t know what to expect when I stepped into the little airplane that would took me to where Katy and Philip Leakey live and work. I was actually advised not to have expectations, which helped me a lot once I arrived. It allowed my brain to be a sponge and soak up everything around me. Coming from Malibu California, a hub of capitalism, and venturing out to the bush of Africa to study Fair Trade, the only thing I did know was that it would be an adventure. 

I spent my first few days just observing and meeting the people, getting a feel for the community. AnneAnne (a brilliant woman who is my bridge into the community) and  Katy (my guide for basically everything else who has taught me many amazing things last week, yesterday, today, and probably everyday following) have both described Fair Trade in their own words and how it has changed the community here. What I have gathered, so far, is that it is a system where people (both the business and the entrepreneurs) work together to figure out a just or *fair* system in which to work and earn money, basically to “create their own realities.” The work they put in is reciprocated through what they gain, and it’s not just money – it’s much more than that.  The people working are able to have healthcare, educate their kids and provide for their families. I’m excited to interview people and see what they have to say so I can better understand this *magical* system!

**Fair Trade Fairy**

Check out the Pied Piper Collection here!


10
Aug 16

Through the Eyes of a Self-Proclaimed Fair Trade Fairy

Piper DesigningWe’re excited to introduce Piper Hays!  Everyone on The Leakey Collection Team who has met Piper, both in East Africa and Southern California, has been delighted by her passion and enthusiasm!  A deep mutual respect and friendship with the Maasai artisans developed during her 5 week visit with the Leakeys in the Rift Valley to learn about Fair Trade. Over the next month or so, we will be sharing Piper’s insights through her guest blog, as well as her perspective through photos and interview videos with the people whose lives are positively impacted by our Fair Trade partnership with them.  Piper even designed a special Zulugrass collection that we are featuring on our website! Check out the Pied Piper Collection here!  Prepare to be just as delighted as we are!

In her second year at the University of San Francisco, Piper is studying communications, anthropology, and German.  Along with her interest in travel and learning about different cultures, Piper is an accomplished musician! She sings and plays 4 instruments: guitar, mandolin, piano, and even the ukulele which she took to Kenya and used to bond musically with her new friends. She has a love for all-things-glitter and is never without her Fairy Glitter bottle, blessing those she meets with a little application because “everybody needs to shine.” She now proclaims herself the Fair Trade Fairy!  Make sure you check back each week to read her blogs and for a surprise contest!


18
Jul 16

The Leakeys Have Branched Out

birds eye view of farmWe’ve shared some information about Katy and Philip’s sustainable lifestyle before. They’ve been growing their own vegetables and fruits, along with tilapia farming and honey harvesting, etc. for quite a while. But over the past few years, they’ve branched out into big-time farming with their Maasai partners, along with processing food items!  workers

Last summer Katy shared one of her special recipes – her Chia Seed Salad Dressing - that uses items from their harvest. Make sure you check out the link, then scroll down for a new recipe using healthy, farm fresh ingredients!

pawpawsOn the Olkerii Farm, they have fruit trees: figs, pineapples, papaya, and pomegranates. Along other fruits and chia, the farm grows vegetables such as tomatoes, chard, shallots, and more!  Not only do they have a thriving business selling the crops but also produce such food items as jams and chutneys!  What a remarkable work opportunity in East Africa!  In addition, the importance of a good healthy diet is taught through a program partially supported by the sales of Beads for Healthy Gardens. bfhgThis is one of many things YOU support with your purchases, and through 7/21/16 you can Buy One and Get a Second One Half Off for a friend! 

Try this SUMMER QUINOA AND FRESH VEGGIE SALAD WITH HONEY-SHALLOT VINAIGRETTE and let us know how it turns out!

INGREDIENTS:

FOR THE HONEY-SHALLOT VINAIGRETTE:

  • ½ c. freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • ½ c. rice vinegar
  • 2 T. honey
  • ½ c. minced shallots
  • ¼ tsp. kosher salt
  • freshly ground black pepper, to taste
  • 2/3 c. olive oil

FOR THE SALAD:

  • 1 c. uncooked red quinoa
  • 2 c. chopped English cucumber
  • 2 c. halved grape tomatoes
  • 1 medium yellow bell pepper, chopped
  • raw kernels cut from 2 large ears of sweet corn
  • 3 green onions, chopped
  • ¼ c. fresh chopped parsley
  • ¼ c. fresh chopped mint
  • Fresh Spinach and/or Spring Mix

DIRECTIONS:

FOR THE HONEY-SHALLOT VINAIGRETTE:

Combine lemon juice, rice vinegar, honey, shallots, salt, and pepper in a small bowl. Let sit while preparing the rest of the salad. When ready to serve the salad, add the olive oil to the vinaigrette mixture, mix and add to salad.

FOR THE SALAD:

Prepare quinoa according to package directions and allow to cool completely.

In a large bowl, fold together cooked and cooled quinoa, cucumber, tomatoes, bell pepper, sweet corn, green onions. Drizzle about ¾ cup of the honey-shallot vinaigrette over the salad mixture and fold to combine. Then fold in the parsley and mint.

cropped salad

Place a layer of the Spring Mix and/or Baby Spinach Blend on a platter. Spoon salad mixture over the greens and use additional black pepper and mint if desired.

 


05
Jul 16

What’s in Your Beach Bag?

What's In Your

New Marula from Katy
DSC_0311We know you are protecting yourself with hats and sunscreen, but sometimes you may still overdo that sun exposure! Did you know that Marula Oil has been used for hundreds of years by women in Africa to heal minor burns, to soothe redness, swelling and irritation, as well as a highly valued moisturizer for radiant skin? Not only does it fight free-radicals that cause premature skin aging with its extremely high concentration of antioxidants and fatty acids, Omega 6 and 9 but is great for sunburn!

model by poolOf course, durable, water-proof, lightweight Zulugrass is THE jewelry for water activities, whether it’s surfing, water-skiing, or relaxing by the pool with a cool drink in your hand. Our Duets or Style To Go have several color options to provide a little sizzle for your summer wardrobe.