Artisan Spotlight: Carmelita Ramos

In honor of International Women’s Day, we’re reposting this Artisan Spotlight on one of our favorite leaders: Carmelita Ramos. Enjoy! Sparkling beads dance across her hands as Carmelita Ramos creates earrings and bracelets to sell to customers in the distant land of the United States. Her dreams of earning a living and educating her children…

Batik: Layered Beauty

Batik has been around for centuries, in lands as diverse as Japan, India, and Egypt. As an art form that grew and thrived in multiple cultures before the time of recorded history, it is impossible to trace its direct origins, but there is no doubt about its popularity in West Africa today. Textiles have long…

Kati Torda, Bead Whisperer

When Kati Torda walks into her workshop filled with gorgeous beads, she sees a kaleidoscope of faces, places, and colors. For her, the beads are alive, and each one tells a story. “I love them all, but my favorites are the naming beads given to children at birth and then passed down for generations,” admits…

Guest Blogger Amy Kay’s Trip to Guatemala

I’m something of an impostor… a fraud, in fact.  Although I’m posing as a business person and own a Fair Trade store, I’m really just a minister. After serving the church for 11 years, I began following my husband’s career four years ago and the result has been a lot of substitute preaching, serving part-time…

Introduction to The Modern Maya

Once one of the most powerful civilizations in Central America, the Maya people remain an integral part of Guatemala. The rise of the Maya civilization began thousands of years ago and spread across what it now southern Mexico all the way to modern-day Honduras. The Maya civilization lasted longer than any other Mesoamerican culture that…

Reducing Impact, Recycling Inspiration

In today’s struggle to preserve the earth for future generations, the inclusion of people in developing countries is more important than ever. Not only are those in developing countries more at risk for health problems caused by environmental factors, without their participation in taking measures to combat environmental problems, there is little chance of seeing…

Tres Estrellas: A Story of Transformation

One of the most beautiful things about fair trade is the way it transforms things. It transforms people who are oppressed into people who have opportunities. It transforms beggars into businessmen. It transforms kids on the street into kids in the classroom. And sometimes, with a little creativity, it turns trash into treasure.

Artisan Spotlight: Carmelita Ramos

Sparkling beads dance across her hands as Carmelita Ramos creates earrings and bracelets to sell to customers in the distant land of the United States. Her dreams of earning a living and educating her children were once just as distant, but through her work and creativity and her connection with fair trade, those dreams have…

Artisan Spotlight: Diego Ravinal

Everything old is new again, right? At its best, fashion takes classics that have been around for ages, and spins them into something new right before our eyes. Oscar de la Renta, Rachel Roy, Nicole Miller, and several other designers showed pearls for Spring 2014, but these weren’t your granny’s pearls. While pearls have an…

Unique Batik: Behind the Brand

What do you get when you combine innovative design with inspirational programs in developing countries? Charmed objects and changed lives! Here at Unique Batik, we think it’s time to let our fans know about the great work their purchases support, so follow our new blog to meet our artisans, get behind the scenes glimpses of…