Fashion with a Cause: ‘Tis the Season for Giving Back

The holiday season finds us all in a frenzy of decorating, entertaining and shopping.  It’s easy to lose sight of the true spirit of the holidays while checking-off our To Do and Must Have lists.  This time of year, we like to celebrate and share the stories of a few of our vendors and the incredible work they do around the world.

Handspun Hope

Handspun Hope is an initiative based on the belief that solutions to poverty should be entrepreneurial, innovative and holistic.  Handspun Hope provides life-saving, long-term employment to more than 75 of Northern Rwanda’s most impoverished individuals — widows and abandoned women.

During the atrocities of the 1994 Rwandan Genocide, the rare skill of spinning wool into yarn was completely lost. However, in 2008, True Vineyard Ministries reintroduced the age-old craft so it could employ these vulnerable women…and Handspun Hope was born.

Using only hand tools and spinning wheels, these women create organic yarn from their own flocks of Merino sheep.  The yarn is dyed naturally with plant materials such as cosmos petals, onion skins, and eucalyptus leaves, resulting in beautiful, all natural knit-ware.

Lost Horizons

Lost Horizons was started with the philosophy of helping the artisans they work with to develop new skills to improve their lives and provide for their families.  Lost Horizons has been working in Nepal for over 30 years, collaborating with women to develop knitting associations that train and provide steady employment to local women as skilled, artisan knitters.

In the beginning, Lost Horizons worked with approximately 25 women in one workshop.  Now, 30 years later, there are seven workshops and over 800 women knitting these vibrant, high-quality woolen accessories.

 Both certified members of the Fair Trade Federation, Handspun Hope and Lost Horizons ensure fair wages and safe working conditions.  These artisans are empowered to strengthen their communities and grow their businesses sustainably.

You can support these artisan products at Homefest and HomefestDecor.com

To learn more about Handspun Hope and Lost Horizons, visit their websites:

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