by Amanda Kloer
Published November 01, 2009 @ 08:00AM PT
Winter is sneaking up on us like a spy in silk stockings, and bringing with it those icy winds that require hats, gloves, and scarves. But before you stock up on winter accessories, take a few moments to consider the people who are making you warm. Buying Fair Trade products to keep you cozy is a great way to support companies who are taking measures to prevent slavery and exploitation of workers. Plus, the Internet is full of great options. Here are a few:
World of Good Ebay Store: From sweatshop-free wool socks to simple hemp gloves to colorful handmade mittens, this is your Fair Trade Winter hookup. As a bonus, you can also buy through individual sellers who make a living selling Fair Trade and environmentally conscious products. Also, Original Good, which is part of World of Good, has a huge selection of scarves, though they’re the kind that are probably better in warmer climates.
Pristine Planet: They have a selection of Fair Trade and eco-friendly products. with a huge selection of scarves. Some are the keep-you-toasty kind and some are good for Winter in Dallas or Atlanta.
Ethica Accessories: Based in Australia, this company was founded by a group of Sisters of St. Joseph who wanted to make a difference. They sell handmade, Fair Trade products from Peru, including Alpaca hats and other Winter snugglies. They also have products for kids.
Eka: This UK fashion line is all Fair Trade and features cute vintage-style Winter hats inspired by the Great Gatsby and Rita Hayworth, among others. These would make a great holiday gift for anyone who likes both fashion and justice. I would totally live in these hats year round if they didn’t make me sweat in July.
Vaute Couture: If you’re the creative type, you can design (or ask others to design) your own made-to-order Winter coat. All the materials they use are vegan, green, and Fair Trade materials, and the coats are assembled in Chicago by workers paid a living wage. It’s high fashion with a high purpose.
There are a number of other sources of Fair Trade Winter accessories, so if you know of any, please leave them in the comments. If we take the time to really think about out purchases, we can keep warm this winter without leaving workers in developing countries out in the cold.
Photo credit: mahalie