First off, you may notice a few changes to the blog..
I am re-vamping 10 Rooms online,
with the aim to incorporate the home for 10 Rooms Design
into this site, as well as linking to our new Etsy shop that's coming!
Exciting things are afoot these days...
This is resolution 3 of 4, so I promise it won't go on forever :)
I am aiming to buy more responsibly these days.
That means local green products when possible,
and ensuring everything else was manufactured responsibly.
There are so many better options out there,
we can all do a bit better at this -
I know I am somewhat of a slacker on this front at times, caving to the easy choice.
But if I had convenient,well-designed, well-priced, responsible options I may do better...
I met owner Peita Gardiman on twitter,
where her bio reads:
Marketplace for upcycled, repurposed, sustainable and fair trade products
made by independant artisans around the world.
Intrigued? The shop includes some great global finds..
KiKati bags, from Africa - fluffy towels backed with a traditional East African garment
Silver Knitted Ring, Australia
Hei Cube,from Australia - bamboo charcoal air freshener
Pure Earth Home Cleaning Pack
Fair Trade Giraffe & Buffalo - made from recycled rubber thongs (!) in Kenya
I wanted to know more about the company and it's founder -
and she graciously agreed to an interview - Thank You, Peita!
10: What is your background?
PG: I have this quirky background that has always been half technology, half humanity.
I grew up travelling around Australia a lot and it seemed that no matter where I travelled, I found the most fascinating places to be in either surrounded by nature or trawling through marketplaces filled with artisan merchants. I think these two loves are what led me to create Ethikl. Becoming a parent also really inspired to me make a difference in the world my children would inhabit.
10: What inspired you to launch Ethikl?
PG: Ethikl is an online Market supporting handmade, upcycled, fair trade & ethical products made by independent producers. I started Ethikl as a result of my own personal journey to become a conscious consumer following a realisation that the products I was using around my home and family were toxic and not coming from trustworthy sources and that clever marketing is leading us to believe that we should consume more than we really need to. I started to adopt a new way of thinking… where are the things coming from that I am using, and who am I buying them from? Where is it going to go when I’m done with it? How can I use things that already exist instead of asking the planet to continually contribute more resources?
10: On your site you discuss "ethical consumerism" and "conscious consuming" - have you seen a real increase in people wanting to buy responsibly?
PG: Ethical consumerism is all about exercising the power of your money to drive forward positive change and align your personal values with your buying decisions. People are excited to be part of something new, and they can see the potential in making their dollars count by supporting fair trade, sweat-free production and upcycled design.
So many of the designers on Ethikl are truly excited to finally have a venue that resonates with their ideals. Surveys show that increasing numbers of consumers want their food, clothing, cosmetics, energy, travel and finance to have less of a negative impact on people and the planet, and want companies to behave more responsibly
Ethical consumerism has been heralded as one of the major trend right now riding on the back of the current trend for natural and organic products. Research has shown that consumer demand for organics is growing rapidly with worldwide demand for organics is growing by between 20 and 45 per cent each year and Fair Trade by 72 per cent.
10: How do you find the products that you sell?
PG: I have met many artisans all around Australia and have taken great delight in the process of visiting markets and studio searching for new talent, we also get a lot of referrals and interest online. I love meeting and inviting artisans to open a studio on ethikl and then I personally get excited about every single sale for they make, I feel proud to bring exposure to these brilliant designers. All our sellers are handpicked, and need to apply to sell on Ethikl to maintain the integrity of the site.
10: What is your favourite find?
PG: It’s really hard for me to pick just one that is my favourite…
I have handmade soap http://www.ethikl.com.au/soaps all over the house, my mother loves the Calendula Hard Working Hand Balm by the Herbal Gardener http://www.ethikl.com.au/theherbalgardener and I also now buy all our greeting cards from Earth Greetings http://www.ethikl.com.au/earthgreetings. I have been dreaming about the beautiful hand forged and ethically sourced range of jewellery with stunning archetypal designs by Osiris http://www.ethikl.com.au/osirisjewellery for a while…Oh and I can not go past these amazing rubber sculptures by Ethical Gifts http://www.ethikl.com.au/ethicalgifts. Local women and children comb the beaches to collect the indestructible pieces of rubber washed up and talented artisans and sculptors in the village glue the pieces together in multicoloured patterns, then hand carve each carefully crafted animal, transforming recycled waste into stunning works of art, amazing!
10: What has been your major achievement in 2010?
PG: It has been a huge buzz when major publications have contacted me to do an interviews and I realize that people are really connecting with the idea and I am continually excited by the potential of ethical shopping to create real change in the world. Oh, and we are just about to celebrate our 1st Birthday, that in itself is a huge achievement!
10: What's next for Ethikl?
PG: Where to start!…The dream is to grow ethikl into an international platform where sellers who are doing great work all around the world can sell in one place. We plan to develop a thriving community where consumers are actively aware of the ethical implications of their purchasing decisions and we aim to have consumers engage in meaningful dialogue around the values and implications of various forms of ethical purchasing.
Makes you want re-think that jaunt over to the dollar store, doesn't it?
If you are concerned about the source of the products you are buying,
Ethikl provides an opportunity for change.
Thanks again, Peita, for taking the time for this interview -
I wish you continued success in 2011.