It was great to see everyone who came to the Prospect Heights Craft Fair this past Saturday -- both old and new customers and vendor friends alike! It is so gratifying to be able to chat about the stories behind the fair trade items that Rain Lily sells. About the craft techniques used to make our scarves, about the craft coops that we work with, and about how buying fair trade really does benefit the artisans. Women who work in the craft coop in Madhya Pradesh where we source our indigo and bird scarves, for example, make money so they can send their children to school and improve their standard of living.
New items coming include handwoven shawls from Ethioipia, hand block-printed shoulder bags from India, and more. So keep checking the website and look on our Events page for upcoming sales. And thank you for your support!
Ikat Fabric from Orissa, India
Spring in Kashmir India (Photo: AP)
The air smells so fresh and good today! Spring is here and I notice little shoots and buds on all of the trees, flowers and shrubs -- hooray! With spring come lots of events where Rain Lily will be selling our fair trade crafts -- scarves, bags, jewelry, bird houses, chimes and other treasures. We're excited about some of the new items coming soon from the far corners of the earth. From Guatemala, Mali, Bolivia, India, Cambodia, Myanmar (yes!) and more. So stay tuned to our "Events" page and to this blog and be sure and check the shop online for our new items.
Happy New Year everyone! It's been a while since we've posted. We've been busy designing, sourcing and selling our handmade, fair trade crafts. I hope that everyone had a restful and rejeuvenating holiday season and that you're now ready to have a productive, creative new year -- I know we are!
We've already got our eye on some wonderful new products. In addition, we have plans to work with new craft groups in India, Africa and South America. In the meantime, we'd love to hear from you -- feedback is always welcome, and if there are things you'd like to see on the site, let us know.
Wow, are we excited about new items coming soon for the Holiday Season! Beautiful, chic, stylish, affordable and of course completely handmade and fair trade. So you can give a gift to someone (or yourself) and you are giving twice -- to the recipient and to the artisans who made the gift. Everyone wins! And how lovely is that?
Below, see the stole made from handspun, handwoven cotton by women in a Central Indian weaving group. Soft, cozy, colorful and luxurious! Then there's the mudcloth clutch/pouch handmade in Mali (cotton, natural dye made from mud of course!) with chic chevron pattern and adorable tassel. Just two items of many coming in the next few weeks. Interested? Email me at firstname.lastname@example.org and I'll give you the details!
Handwoven Stole - India Handmade Mudcloth Pouch/Clutch - Mali
Half the Sky is a book written by NY Times journalist Nicholas Kristof and his wife Sheryl WuDunn about the oppression of women around the world. It shows us examples of the violence and oppression of women that is an accepted part of cultures everywhere, but it also shows us examples of how meaningful solutions are coming through health care, education, and economic empowerment for women and girls.
Now comes the documentary, which was filmed in 10 countries and follows the authors and celebrity activists as they tell us stories of inspiring, courageous women who are part of the solutions. It will be aired on PBS stations on Monday and Tuesday nights, October 1st and 2nd - Parts I and II. The book was incredibly moving, disturbing and ultimately hopeful. Some of the economic empowerment solutions come in the form of small businesses that women create to sell traditional crafts they have made. They are able to send their children to school, buy food for the family, and their status in the community changes -- they become respected.
This ties in to Rain Lily's goal of providing sustainable income to impoverished women in traditional cultures -- we're so excited about the whole movement! So try and take the time to watch this very important documentary.
Welcome to the new Rain Lily site! We're excited about this Shopify site because it's customizable and we'll be able to reach lots more folks with it.