As you may have noticed, we are in the midst of wedding season. As you attend wedding showers, receptions, and parties you may find yourself wondering what in the world you should gift to the bride and groom. So Yobel is here to help with our suggestions of directly and fairly traded gift ideas for you and the new couple.
Sari Blanket or Sari Quilt
These beautiful, handmade sari quilts are made by women who are survivors of Kolkata's red light areas who have taken brave steps into new life, freedom, and hope. Hand-quilted with a running stitch, layers of vintage sari materials. These one-of-a-kind throws are the perfect cozy gift for a new home.
Block-Printed Tea Towels
Each tea towel has been made with care by girls rescued from sex trafficking in India. Individually sewn and block printed, every girl is given a skill and employment to help them start a new life. These towels are 100% cotton and would brighten up any kitchen. It's the perfect gift to mix-and-match to perfectly reflect the style of the special couple.
Block-Printed Coaster Set
What a better way to make sure the furniture of a new home is protected than to gift a set of 100% cotton coasters? Each set of beverage coasters has been made with care by girls rescued from sex trafficking in India. Individually sewn and block printed, every girl is given a skill and employment to help them start a new life. These coasters would brighten up any home.
Olive Wood Spatulas
Unique olive wood creations are a beautiful accent to any kitchen. These designs provide an avenue of economic support and stability for these artisans and their families. Great for wedding, house-warming, or hostess gifts!
Made by an ethical manufacturer in Nepal committed to empowering those most marginalized by society to fresh starts and fulfilled lives. This knit pillow features the silhouette of the famous Nepali Annapurna Mountain Range in the Himalayas. These beautiful pillows make for a comfy addition to any couch or chair.
For the Bride
These journals are filled with 80 handmade paper pages. The pages are made from wool or algae(plant) fleck and are covered with bright sari cloth in a variety of patterns and colors. Each journal is made by a woman freed from the sex industry of Kolkata. They are perfect for the new couple to record memories of special occasions, keep track of thoughts, or paste some pictures.
Starfish Project developed a socially responsible jewelry business in order to provide women with alternative employment and a range of holistic care services. The women are provided opportunities to heal and grow through counseling, vocational training, language acquisition, family education grants and health care access, as well as providing housing in a women’s shelter. This delicate bar necklace is a beautiful and simple addition to any outfit. It is the perfect accessory to wear to school, to work, or out for dinner.
Made of hand spun cotton, handwoven, hand block printed, and hand sewn in the rolling hills of India. Each product created is a piece of art for you to enjoy. The artisans are provided good work environments, education for their children, english and vocational training, medical care for their families, and a safe place that brings hope for their future. This weekender bag is the perfect size for any bride to pack for a quick trip away or as a carry-on for trips across the sky.
Ethically sourced East African leather makes these sleek belts even more appealing. Made by a Kenyan cooperative that not only offers boutique quality designs but seeks to continually employ and train local artisans and pay them a fair living wage. The purchase of this item also provides support to local disadvantaged children within an orphanage while employing artisans living within the largest slum in Nairobi. These classic belts and will last for years.
Made by a Kenyan cooperative that offers boutique quality designs, employs and trains local artisans, pays a fair living wage, and supports a local orphanage. It features a smooth leather interior and exterior with pockets on either side of the interior for securing business card or other important items, remaining slim for maximum comfort and accessibility. This gorgeous piece makes an instant impression and will have everyone at the office (or coffeeshop) taking notice.
Made by the Kenyan cooperative, supporting local artisans and contributing to an orphanage. It features brass fixtures, two inside pockets and an outside pocket on both front and back along with adjustable straps featuring sliding shoulder pad for additional comfort. This is a bag that once bought is enjoyed for a life time.
We hope these suggestions help you to find the perfect gift for the new married couple in your life!
-Written by Hannah Monroe, Programs Administrator
Yobel is proud to be the sole purveyor of Ethnotek products in the United States! Co-Owners, Clay & Emily Ross were initially drawn to this incredible company’s techno-hip bags because of their high utility features (like this camera bag designed by photographers) and strong ethic toward both people and planet. As a conscious consumer, you can feel good that Ethnotek’s slow-production materials are sourced in person from the villages where they are created. Each artisan piece is purchased directly from the person who made it, for a fair price.
As consumers, we have power and we must use it wisely. United States citizens will purportedly spend $1 trillion this year on Christmas gifts. That is $1 trillion votes cast for the kind of world we want to live in. Let’s vote together for a world that prioritizes People and Planet so we ALL Profit!