May 22 2009 Friday at 12:02 PM

Why Fair Trade?


images from SOS Children's Villages

I’ve been meaning to blog about Fair Trade for a while now, and I'm a little sad that we just missed the official Fair Trade Day celebration (May 1st to May 16th). It’s never too late to spread the fair trade love though, right? Right. 

I endeavor to maintain local, or Fair Trade relationships as much as possible for any goods that I have manufactured for Sublime Stitching (patterns, kits, stickers, buttons, some of our textiles, pink scissors just to name a few). This also means working with local or independent manufacturers whenever possible to prevent unecessary, costly shipment and transport of goods. This can sometimes pose challenges for finding what we need locally, which means sometimes we have to go elsewhere or get creative. But, the best part is: we can pass the good vibes on to you, our lovely customers. I know that who you shop with is just as important as how much you love your order. When you shop my website, your dollars have a very real impact on all of us here on a day-to-day basis. Your support allows us, as a business, to support other businesses we choose to work with and support, by extension. You see? It's like this whole chain of goodness.

Jordan and Jessica making Metallic Palettes in the Sublime Stitching office

And, in case you didn't know: Sublime Stitching Kits are hand-assembled in Austin according to your wishes. Jordan neatly folds the instruction sheets and needle cards in the office when not filling orders, Mary and Krystal bundle floss palettes (when not doing a gabillion of the other demands we all share) and much, much more. I actually miss the days when I used to hand-fold all the patterns, stuff the envelopes and hand-stamp each pattern theme with a big, rubber stamp I had made at an old shop here in town. It was fun, relaxing and a labor of love. But now the love has grown! So, when we need to step outside the office for our manufacturing needs, we go local and fair trade whenever we can. The Sublime Stitching Tea Towel is  our very first fair trade textile made exclusively for us in India (according to the specifications of our stitchers who tested it on the first-ever Tea Towel Tour!) The result? Most of you exclaim it's the Most Awesome Tea Towel you've ever stitched on. That's what we like to hear. That's what fair trade can do.