Oh baby, baby, baby… I got so much love in me – Fair trade gifts for babies

How embarrassing… a “fair trade fashionista” who pretty much forfeited all of FAIR TRADE MONTH and who’d almost forgotten the password to blog, it’s been so long.

Alas, I will not dwell on the past, but look toward the future. There’s some fair trade shopping to be done with Hanukah, Christmas, Kwanzaa, and any other holiday that is to be celebrated ever… through out the year and centered on gift giving (and my personal favorite: RECEIVING!).

So without further adieu, let’s talk about babies. (don’t worry, I won’t make any embarrassing innuendo about the actual making of them. Although did you know that September 16 is the MOST COMMON BIRTHDAY? And that? THAT, my friends, means that there’s an awful lot of babies conceived on New Years, another holiday to be celebrated very soon.) ANYWAY… I love babies. They amaze me. All cuddly soft and sweet smelling. Psht… their poop hardly even stinks! I also love buying baby things! Even though they don’t know that they are on the receiving end and they can’t even open the gift (and once they can, they inevitably care more about the BOX the gift comes in), there is something so precious about buying a mini-sized anything.

First up: shoes (every fashionista’s favorite, naturally)! Check out these “96% recycled and 100% cute” baby shoes.

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These cuties are only $36 (there are others for $34) and are handmade by artisans in Asheville, NC and support Sole Hope to put shoes on kids in Africa and help heal them of foot related diseases. This organization is amazing (I am a volunteer). You can also order shoe cutting party packages to host the cutting of shoes to send to widows in Africa to sew shoes for kids there. It’s a great opportunity with the “generous” season upon us. Here is a link to that, if you are interested: http://bit.ly/ShyHeU

 

Next up: Blanket! My daughter is so attached to her baby blanket. She is 3.5 years old and kind of resembles Linus (was it even Linus? I can’t remember?) from Charlie Brown in that she carries this thing everywhere. “Blank” has recently been identified as a “her” and has feelings. (Help me.) So, baby blankets can become life long friends of little ones. I L-O-V-E this $125 blanket here:

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Because, hello? Who DOESN’T WANT whatever a pug is helping sell?? I love this blanket because it’s made of the softest baby alpaca and hand woven on looms by a group supported by a fair trade organization in Peru. Alpaca is perfect for baby’s sensitive skin because alpaca tends to be hypoallergenic. Many people who cannot wear wool, report that they can wear alpaca with no allergic reaction. Alpaca also tends to have a low “prickle factor” which makes it possible for most people to wear it next to their skin without itching. (Some experts say this is because the individual scales on alpaca fibers are smoother and lower than those on the fibers of other mammals. The quality of the scales on alpaca fiber is also the reason that garments made from alpaca don’t pill. And no one wants to gift something that is going to pill and age as badly as Lindsey Lohan. ) Alpaca is also more flame resistant than plant or synthetic fibers. In addition, in case of fire, it does not melt onto the skin like synthetics do. And if ALL THAT doesn’t sell you, just look at that pug… I mean, model. What mama wouldn’t want to borrow this baby blanket?

 

And finally, since this is becoming the longest post in the history of long posts: Stuffed Animals and Finger Puppets!! Seriously? Look. At. These. I’m almost willing to have another baby just so we can have these live in our house. (Don’t worry, Husband, Joe.)

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Priced from $14-$35 and sold by Come Together Trading. I used to have a thing for baby harp seals. (This is one of the cutest ones I’ve ever seen.) These are all handmade in Peru by a group, El Mercurio, which was started in 2003 with five women and has expanded to over thirty! The members of El Mercurio fled to the outskirts of Huancavelica in the 1980s, escaping the horrific violence in the countryside.

So what do y’all think? Do you want to shop to support? Let’s start our freshest generations out with gifts that matter beyond themselves. I know my goal as a parent is to raise eco and socially responsible and conscientious kids. And it could start with the gifts they receive!

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