When you think about it, the bridal gown industry can be pretty wasteful. A lot of time, money, labor, and materials go into these stunning dresses, which are worn for one day and then shoved into a box under someone’s bed for several decades.
For the most part, this fall has been pretty good so far. But, there have been a few crap things that have happened in our family. This can take a toll on my spirit, as I am an empath who tends to feel others’ hurts and a spiritual searcher who is constantly bothered by and trying to make sense of the fact that bad things happen to innocent people and animals. Consciously cultivating gratitude is a good way to also acknowledge all of the goodness around me! Here’s what’s bringing me joy lately:
Y’all, I am thrilled to introduce you today to Ruth Burk, a compassionate entrepreneur with Trades of Hope! Ruth is empowering women across the globe by selling Trades of Hope’s fair trade jewelry and accessories right here in the Triangle area of North Carolina.
Back in January, I was telling a group of ladies about my interest in fair trade fashion and my struggles to find local vendors. One of them piped up and said she had recently learned about a local fair trade fashion truck through another friend. I was beyond excited and immediately hit the Internet to find out more.
Shopping for clothes on the Internet just isn’t my thing. I don’t have a “normal” body shape (but isn’t that true of most of us?), and depending on the brand and fit, I can wear clothing that ranges anywhere from a size 0 to size 8. Trying things on in store is critical for me. Reluctant to order an expensive fair trade shirt online only to find that I have to pay to ship it straight back due to it not fitting, I set out in my car a few weeks ago to find fair trade clothing in my home city of Raleigh.
Ha. Ha. Ha.
The number of brick-and-mortar stores selling fair trade clothing in Raleigh (the second largest city in North Carolina, I might add) is underwhelming at best. Google searches only turned up one store: Sugar Magnolia, which is located on Hillsborough Street near NC State’s campus.
Well hey there, long lost friends! After a brief hiatus on the blog while I was studying for and taking my social work clinical licensure exam (I passed!! Happy dance!), I am back at it with an update on how the Inside Out fair trade fashion challenge is going. Spoiler alert: pretty well.
Are you looking for a fun and fresh idea for your bachelorette party? Look no further! What could be better than your own private wine tasting? Wines for Humanity, a wine tasting company serving Wake, Durham, Orange, Granville, and Person Counties in NC, brings the fun to you by traveling to your personal residence for a wine tasting. As you sample, your wine consultant will teach you how to taste wine and pair the various wines with food. The best part? They help prevent homelessness by donating 12-17% of their proceeds to a local organization that helps community members who are struggling with their utility bills. Oh, and LivingSocial is currently offering a discounted deal one one of their wine tasting packages, so that’s pretty fabulous as well.
Y’all, flowers can be expensive. If you’ve actually grown flowers yourself, you probably understand why. It takes lots of nurturing to grow a beautiful flower, which has to then be carefully cut and transported. And, if you’re purchasing from a florist, you’re also paying for the time, materials, and skill that go into professional arrangements. And you know where most beautiful wedding bouquets and reception arrangements go come midnight when the party is over? A big white trash bag. Yes, most wedding flowers are tossed in the trash mere hours or minutes after they stood in all of their splendor at one of the most important events of your life. That’s hundreds, often thousands of dollars worth of gorgeous flowers, headed to the landfill. Doesn’t the thought make you sick? Thankfully, I’m bringing you some wonderful alternatives today that will allow your gorgeous flowers to be enjoyed just a bit longer.
1. Donate. It would probably really make someone’s day to receive one of your beautiful arrangements! Thankfully there are programs out there that will come pick up your wedding flowers and deliver them to local nursing homes, hospice facilities, etc. I used one after my own wedding! The Flower Shuttle, based out of Raleigh, NC, has used recycled event flowers to create 123,802 arrangements since 2006. So amazing! Look for similar organizations in your area, or contact local Meals on Wheels groups, assisted living facilities, and other such programs to see if they might be interested in your flowers.