Dec 9, 2012

Shopping Handcrafted and Beyond: Fair Trade Holiday Gifts, Plushes for Wildlife, and Giving Unicef

As handcrafted artists, the Holiday Season is our time to shine!  For those who make handcrafted jewelry and beads, the Holidays are often our busiest time of the year, a time when we can express our love for friends and family creatively. We may be putting much love and energy into our online stores and attending craft shows, or perhaps we are busy happily creating one of a kind gifts. It's not only a special time for selling and sharing our own handcrafted art, but also a time we may support others by buying and gifting others' handcrafted art as well as our own.

Add to that fair trade and the Holidays have become a fabulous time for giving our best to the world.  So how about giving a little of the best of everything this year: handcrafted and recycled beads, handcrafted jewelry, and fair trade? Yes, you can! 

All is Fair in Lovin' Handcrafted: 31 Bits

Click on the photo to shop or to learn more about how you can become involved.

This Holiday, you can shop handcrafted jewelry made with recycled handcrafted paper beads -- and support women artistsans in Uganda! And while you may think of Uganda as a place of a 25 year war, where children taught to be soldiers, and people are so very desperate -- that is not Uganda today!!
Today, Uganda is the story of hope and empowerment, thanks to the cool handcrafted fair trade business 31 Bits:

Now that is handcrafted with love! 

31 Bits gift cards!

With 31 Bits, you can shop for everything from headbands to wedding jewelry, or if you would prefer your gift recipient choose their own item, 31 Bits also offers gift cards in amounts from $20 to $1,5000. 

Celebrate where the wild things are ...

You might also wish to celebrate and share your love this Holiday Season with gifts that support wildlife and nature. The National Wildlife Federation and The Sierra Club both offer green gifts that come with adorable animal plushes, free shipping, and cool calenders.

National Wildlife Federation:  Adopt a wild animal!

The "Adoption Center" of the National Wildlife Federation has over 50 animals to adopt, from Northern Cardinals to jaguars from; sharks to Snowy Owls!

Adoptions start at $25, and at the $30 and up level, include plush animals to send to the recipient of your choice! Shipping is free on all adoption orders, and you also receive a free North American Wildlife calender (while supplies last).

The Sierra Club: Sponsor a Wild Place! 

Additionally, you can sponsor a wild place at the Sierra Club. There are over twelve places to sponsor, and as with the National Wildlife Federation's animal adoption, you will also receive your choice of an adorable plush animal with sponsorship!

From the Great Smoky Mountains to Glacier National Park, you will be preserving America's legacy and gifting the ability to “Explore, enjoy and protect the planet”®  You can choose to have your plush "gift wrapped" in a reusable Sierra Club tote bag for just a few dollars, and shipping is free. Sponsorship gifts start at  the Sierra Club at $25 and include a plush of your choice. You may also choose a simple virtual sponsorship ranging from $20-$1,000.

Give Gifts for Life: 


Live simply that others may simply live. Give the gift of life this season as you send out your Holiday cards, decorate your tree, or sip your favorite morning beverage. The Unicef online gift store makes shopping for the Holidays twice blessed and simply beautiful! 

Haitian Steel Drum Wall Art, $20
There are many simply cool choices in adult gifts and home decor, from the Haitian Wall Tree of Life art shown above, made from recycled steel drums to Tapered Filigree candles wrapped in suede and beads. The Holiday home decor and adult gifts are intermixed with the online sale, and I encourage you to browse all the store links. By really browsing, I just discovered this Indian 100% silk ruffle wrap for just $37! 

Silk ruffle wrap. India. $37

Such wonderful choices! And best of all, all are gifts that give from the soul!

Unicef Holiday cards, most come in sets of 12 for $12.

Likewise, Unicef abounds in beautiful choices of Holiday cards too. With over 34 Holiday card choices, from Pagan to Jewish to Christian to non-denominational motifs and themes, you'll love sharing your wishes for a joyful Season with friends and family, and you will not just be dreaming --- but will be saving the lives of children -- with every card you write!

One Love Book. Bob Marley's daughter adapts his song into a tale of community. $16

And as always, you can take good care of your circle of friends with quality children's gifts from Unicef. For the little prince or princess in your life, how about a book written by a real queen? Unicef has excellent choices in children's books, including The Sandwhich Swap by the Queen of Jordan, an advocate for all children globally. Or how about a treasured copy of  The Night Before Christmas -- read by you and recorded with your voice? 

The recordable storybook. Why not buy it from UNICEF and help children everywhere? $20

From musical instruments to puzzles to gardening sets, purchasing toys and children's gifts from the Unicef children's gift shop helps raise funds for all children around the world!

May Your Days Be Merry and Bright!
love and namaste,

Toltec Jewels is an author by day, jewelry maker by night. Her literary work is housed by the San Fransisco MOMA and is published internationally in popular magazines, literary quarterlies, and university publications. She has won a number of awards for literary and jewelry arts. She is happiest making handcrafted jewelry with her entire family, snuggling with her doggies and grandkids, sewing, singing, reading, and learning jewelry techniques. She is the host of Jewel School Friends, a community of expert and emerging artisans taking inspiration from each other and Jewel School. Join her on Facebook for networking, fundraising for Beads of Courage, jewelry making challenges, contests, give-a-ways and of course, cool beads and jewelry!

1 comment:

  1. Beautiful post and thank you for the reminder! The "I am a girl" campaign usually sends me a catalogue but I've just realized I haven't received it this year. Last year my daughter - then 1.5 - had picked out baby chicks to show our support. I think it was a mere 15$ for 3 but as they say every little bit helps and this was a new Christmas tradition we were starting.


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