Monday, March 28, 2011

It Certainly Wasn't New York...

Still jazzed up from going to the Flower Show last week, we decided to hit the Boston Gift Show this past weekend.  To quote the Queen, "We are not impressed." Actually I think the quote was "We are not amused".  Well, I was neither impressed nor amused.   They keep promising bigger and better - more vendors, new products...but all we get are the same type of products.  It doesn't even come close to New York's Gift Show.  My favorite vendors are long gone...where are my pillows?  My accessories??  My LEMON BARK???  I would sell a family member for lemon bark!!

There were a couple of bright spots - companies whose products and practices are worth noting.  Rightside Design's "I Sea Life" Collection had some adorable home accessories inspired by the sea.  They are extremely "green" in their packaging, inks and production and a part of their proceeds are donated to organizations that help marine mammals and sea life.  A worthy cause!

Rightside Design's Pillows (photography by R. Palazola)

Another company that caught my attention was Baskets of Cambodia.  According to their website, they are "building sustainable incomes for rural communities", paying above fair trade wages and offering healthcare to the people who make their beautiful products.   Their Tatami style handbags were sleek, elegant and extremely functional!  The bottoms lifted out and the bags rolled up like a tatami mat for packing and travel.  Beautiful colors, beautiful style!  Even the bamboo stands they sat on were handmade in Cambodia.  Another company demonstrating that businesses do not have to damage our environment or its people to make a profit!

Tatami Style handbags (Photography by R. Palazola)

The final business that caught my eye was Revy Fair Trade Products.  Revy's goal - "to empower the women of El Salvador so that they can break the cycle of poverty that has plagued their nation for centuries.  By offering a fair wage, they can keep their daughters in school where they can learn skills for a better life."  They are also a Green America Approved Business.  Their recycled rubber tire purses are fabulous!

Revy Recyled Tire Purse (photography by R. Palazola)

Even though the Boston Gift Show has moved away from items I can use in my design business, I will probably still keep going back hoping to find a few gems like the companies I mentioned above.  Reuse, recycle, repurpose.....helping the environment....helping women in impoverished countries....hopefully the wave of the future for business.

"Act as if what you do makes a difference.  It does."  ~William James

1 comment:

  1. Sounds like a real let down after the great New York show with fabulous new resources, & the inspiring Flower show... maybe time to write off this show & concentrate on the ones that you know are winners! The lemon bark sounds wonderful... if you find it again, let me know where... I'll be right behind you! By the way, love the beautiful picture of the flower representing the coming of Spring... you are a fantastic photographer!


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