Archive for the ‘Sustainability’ Category

Voting With My Dollars

July 24, 2012

Buying sweatshop free items is very important to me.  Unfortunately, it’s not always easy to find things that I like which fall in to this category.  It takes time, research, effort and patience to make good choices especially when it is much easier to race over to a big box store and quickly find similar items (that are usually less expensive too). I liken my thoughtful spending as ‘voting with my dollars’.  One purpose of this blog is to share my experiences and my finds, to make it easier for others to find fair trade goods, and to hopefully convince a few readers to be more mindful in their choices.

Prior to making purchases these are a few of the things I consider:

  1. Where is the item made?  Is it made in a country that treats its employees “fairly”?
  2. What is the item made of?  Is it organic, natural fibers or recyclable?
  3. Is it made locally? How many miles did it have to travel to reach me?

My two most recent purchases involved shoes.  Quinn needed new sneakers and I needed new sandals. After a surprisingly quick online search I found the Autonomie Project’s fair trade, vegan, organic cotton sneakers.  They were reasonably priced and came in many colors.  It took only a few short days to arrive and so far she has worn every day.

The sandals were a bit trickier.  I searched online and just couldn’t find much that I liked.  Luckily, I had remembered seeing some pretty sandals, handmade in Spain, at Berk’s Shoes on Thayer Street.  When I made my way back to the store I found the Eric Michael sandals half price.  My patience had paid off.