Have you heard about Novica? They're a mission-driven website associated with National Geographic working with oodles of talented artists around the world. Their offerings include everything from home decor and stylish jewelry (some of which I am now a proud owner!) to exclusive paintings and one-of-a-kind, handcrafted furniture.
Here's their mission statement:
"We want to give artists and artisans around the world a global platform to express their true artistic talents and to spur their creativity. And, we want to provide you with access to unique, hard-to-find items at great values that only the Internet infrastructure can allow.
At the deepest essence of our philosophy, we want to create a bridge between you and the many talented artisans across the globe.
We want you to know about who you're buying from. We want you to feel that attachment to the product and to the hands that created it."
I was SO fortunate to get an offer to review their products and website, and I'm not lying when I tell you that I deliberated for hours trying to decide what to order. Each item is unique and each item is exquisite.
Check out the gorgeous amber earrings (I picked a pair--can you guess which ones?), nifty women's gloves (it's alpaca wool, ya'll!), and stunning scarves and silk shawls (we don't wear shawls enough anymore). For the fellas, they have everything from wallets to scarves, cufflinks, and other accessories from Peru.
The ordering process is easy and straightforward, shipping is quick, and the product packaging is thoughtful and well done. Two things to note: First, since each item is unique, there are a limited number available. More than once, I tentatively decided on something but didn't place the final order, only to find that there were none left when I was finally ready! So if you see something you like, jump on it! Secondly, there are sales all the time on the site. One of the pairs of earrings I picked dropped in price by the time I decided to finalize my order. That said, I guess dilly-dallying has its rewards sometimes. :)
The moral of this story? I recommend Novica to everyone who loves attractive and distinctive fair-trade items.
Important note: While the fine folks at Novica did provide a gift certificate for me, the opinions expressed in this post are my own.