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I recently walked into a fair trade retail store in Santa Fe, New Mexico and was very surprised by what I saw. I was expecting handmade fair trade clothing with the certified logo, but I was also expecting the prices to be through the roof. What I found surprised me because I could actually afford to buy the nicest shirt now in my closet. It was a beautiful organic, natural dyed shirt that has now solved a particular problem for me. Up until that point I had no fair trade shirt with a western style collar. I needed the shirt to reflect my personality and look good on me. It was perfect. Yes, I spent a bit more than I would if it had been a mass-produced item. But this is a shirt I will cherish, take care of and it will be with me much longer than the disposable types. Plus, I now wear this shirt with a deeper feeling of respect for the entire process that went into it. I wear it when I want to feel and look better, simple as that.
Fair trade clothing is truly more affordable than you think. Do yourself a favor and browse around online for a little while. I recently searched for blue scarves with the intention of finding fairly traded, handmade examples. To my delight, a wide variety of options came up, and most of these options were well within my budget. I started reconsidering my usual clothing choices. My search for blue scarves was actually fun and informative in a number of ways. Soon I noticed many clothing options that were well beyond the scope of mass-produced, possibly sweatshop-produced choices. Now I am deciding to consider the effects of my purchases more often, and I am becoming more and more enthused the further I look.
Consider this: if you value a particular item you are more likely to take care of it. The item will have a specific use at first, and as you experiment with wearing it you will find more uses for it. But you will always want to take care of the item. If you are aware of the care that went into the item you will take better care of it. In fact, it is a great habit of the mind to learn to do this. When we take care with our clothing we add order and care to our day-to-day lives.
Whether you are looking for accent articles, such as blue scarves, or other fair trade clothing, you will find that the choices before you are surprisingly affordable. Give it a shot, and have fun!
write by Balbino Carranza