Wednesday, July 16, 2014

look again: the little market

Do you follow people you don't know on Instagram? Bloggers, celebrities, brands? At first I thought it was weird, but I now have a handful of people in my feed who I don't know beyond daily photos. Former reality TV golden girl Lauren Conrad is one of them—known for her artfully filtered snaps. I've noticed a lot of her posts feature new products for The Little Market, a venture she started with a Fashion Institute classmate and friend. The business works with artisans across the globe and provides a platform to sell and market their goods. I admit I've arrogantly dismissed a lot of Conrad's entrepreneurial endeavors in the past (the Kohl's clothing line and the novels), but I took the time to look at The Little Market's mission and inventory this week and am now applauding instead of scoffing. The project is really admirable and basically my dream job. The two-person team travels to Kenya, Nepal, South Africa and Peru (to name a few), gets to know local cultures and economies, then exercises creative and business acumen to turn a profit that helps supports these artisans. I can't think of anything cooler or more rewarding, honestly. All pieces are handmade and purchased at fair trade prices that provide a living wage for the craftsmen. Here are a few of my favorite pieces from the current stock! Take me on the next trip, LC!!

I like my margaritas authentic—and this aqua glass from Mexico is the real deal.
 Shop it. Get the matching pitcher.

These wood salad servers remind me of the set used so many times at my grandma's dinner table
in Michigan. I used to think they were old-fashioned, but now really like rustic, chic look.
This twisted pair is made in Kenya. Shop it.

The tribal design of this Guatemalan-made bag has a global attitude that is perfect for travel.
 Shop it.

A simple and understated beach towel that doubles as a living room throw. Yes and yes.
Made in Ethiopia. Shop it

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