In York, where I live, the Tour de France excited enormous attention, with bicycles spray-painted in yellow appearing in shop windows, attached to restaurants, even hung up on walls. Personally, although I ride a bike myself, I found it hard to get excited about waiting in a crowd for a mass of cyclists to whizz past in a flash – especially as they didn’t start racing until well after they left the city centre.
But as an environmentalist I’m keen on bikes, and I was delighted to discover a supplier in India which makes gifts such as picture frames, clocks and jewellery from recycled bike chains and cogs – even a sturdy bottle-opener, the perfect gift for men. There are thousands of bike repair shops in India, and they discard quantities of chains because they’re broken or have incorrect sized links. To ‘upcycle’ them into gifts provides jobs for unemployed artisans, prevents more waste being sent to landfill sites, and gives us here some wonderfully creative products.
Continue reading Recycling and upcycling bike parts
Christmas is such a special time of year; full of festive lights and colours and seasonal scents. There’s an atmosphere in the air created by the hustle and bustle of determined shoppers looking for that perfect present. You spend hours and hours traipsing around shop after shop feeling utterly uninspired by the same unimaginative gifts on offer. Well stop; make sure your first shop is Shared Earth and we guarantee that perfect present, that totally inspired, utterly unique, one of a kind gift you’ve been searching for is here.
If you’ve been into any of our shops, you will know that we are passionate about what we do. That’s part of the reason why we love working here so much, The Shared Earth family stretches across the globe to some of the poorest areas there are and Christmas is a time which makes that poverty more apparent. Buying Fair Trade at Christmas is one of the things we can do to help those who truly need a helping hand. We absolutely love the feeling of aiding someone pick out that special something. Especially when we know that ultimately every item we sell is like 2 gifts for the price of 1. The first being for your friend, loved one or family member and the second being the gift of a better life for the artisan who made it. Fair Trade is a big deal to us and our producers and artisans are the ones who inspire us to always strive for more.
Continue reading Why shop fair trade this Christmas?