notablySmitten

cause-conscious goods. gifts. deeds.

upcycled

beauty and the beach bag - Indego Africa

artisanal, bags, baskets, cause conscious, community, cooperatives, education, fashion, global, handbag, handmade, job creation, upcyclededen tirlComment
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Indego Africa is a non-profit that pairs a NYC-based design team with female artisans in Rwanda and Ghana to create stylish and expertly crafted goods.  All of their goods are created by hand using traditional techniques of weaving, block printing, beading, embroidery, wood carving, and metal shaping. A classic example of the highly-skilled sweetgrass weaving technique can be found in the gorgeous and versatile Palm Tote! Perfect for beach days or a trip to the market, the Palm Tote is a beautiful way to make a statement with your accessory while renewing your commitment to help break the cycle of poverty.

Founded in 2007, Indego Africa believes that education is the key to long-term empowerment.  To that end, they are committed to providing fair wages as well as leadership training, business classes, technology workshops, and public health programs to the artisans they partner with to create Indego Africa’s designs.  100% of their profits, combined with grants and private donations, go back to the artisan’s communities. As of 2017, they have positively impacted 1,100 women in Rwanda and Ghana.

Indeed Smitten!

life saving jammies for your dude - Sudara

cause conscious, fashion, guys, human trafficking, job creation, loungewear, pajamas, upcyclededen tirlComment
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notablySmitten will forever support Sudara and the creation of these lifesaving punjammies. And now they've made these dapper duds for dudes as well - I dig it! 

Know that with every purchase, you're investing in job creation and skills training for women in India who are working to remain free from sex slavery.

Original article about the incomparable loungewear.

Forever Smitten.

mini keys of goodness, with maximum effect - The Giving Keys

cause conscious, fashion, gifts, handmade, jewelry, necklaces, neckwear, upcyclededen tirlComment
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I can never get enough of The Giving Keys. Their message, the keys, their faithful purpose and dedication, are completely on point. They were the gift that started notablySmitten - and I have followed their growth faithfully ever since that first purchased key. And now mini keys - perfect.

They are an extraordinary company doing good things for the homeless here in Los Angeles. If you've not heard of them, please read about them in the very first article I ever penned for nS.

And if you've not purchased a key for someone yet, please do - pass it on.

Ever Smitten!

photobooks created thoughtfully - Artifact Uprising

books, cause conscious, conservation, ethical, gifts, upcyclededen tirlComment
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Artifact Uprising was founded by Katie and Jenna, a team of sisters and professional photographers, and there’s one thing for sure - these women have a seriously elegant aesthetic.  With gorgeous products made in the USA and printed on responsibly sourced materials, there’s no better way to capture your family memories than an Artifact Uprising photobook.

All of Artifact Uprising products are printed on FSC certified paper, and are unique in their effort to leave the smallest footprint possible. Portions of their photobooks are printed on post-consumer recycled paper, and their wood blocks are milled from fallen pine trees native to Colorado’s Rocky Mountains.  In addition to their thoughtful paper product sourcing, they have partnered with the non-profit SKCAC to provide empowering and meaningful jobs to adults with mental or physical disabilities.

Certifiably Smitten!

a sparkly, sexy...significant bangle - Eden: Fusion Leather Snap bracelet

bangles, beads, cause conscious, christmas, cuffs, ethical, fashion, gifts, global, handmade, holiday, jewelry, stocking stuffers, upcyclededen tirlComment
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This wrist stunner is made from twenty four hand-beaded strands affixed to two soft, sturdy leather strands. The wristlet closes with three snap buttons that adorn the leather. Stand out in this luscious piece of jewelry from Raven and Lily.

This bangle is made by women who live on the Entoto Mountain in Ethiopia, where the artisans melt down bullet casings to create the beads for their designs, "transforming what was once used for harm into beauty."

This is my third post for Raven and Lily, a company I positively love. The initial post with all appropriate accolades here.

Forever Smitten with Raven and Lily.

shackle and rope men's arm band...Amsterdam love - Pig and Hen

bangles, bracelets, fashion, gifts, guys, upcyclededen tirlComment

This uncomplicated, elegant, confident piece of jewelry for men has a power all its own. The craftsmanship is bold and distinguished...adventuresome. Pig and Hen have created a line of jewelry for men..."meant to survive a lifetime, stronger than steel and will age like your wrinkled face."

I landed in Amsterdam a couple of days ago for a reunion with my husband who was working on a film just outside the city. We had been apart for too many weeks...I love buying him gifts...I wanted to find something special to commemorate our reconnection.

While strolling Rozengracht that first afternoon, I landed at the door of Les Deux Freres - a posh, distinctive men's store that beckoned me in with its heavy lush aroma. I went straight to the accessories counter, and there were these black shackle and rope arm bands. I really liked the titanium toggle and the monikers, this one is called "Legendary Larry".

I am totally notablySmitten with Pig and Hen's message and story:

In the early 1600’s the Dutch were the leading nation sailing out to unknown parts of the world, with the biggest naval fleet the world had ever seen. With some serious sea legs, they discovered new lands, different ways of life but also ran into some big obstacles along the way.

To protect themselves against bad luck the men had a tattoo of a pig and a hen on their feet. It was believed it gave the sailors the ability to survive when they had to abandon ship.

The sailors felt they would be able to find land, just like the Pig and Hen who were kept in wooden crates and thus floated, and would let the tide bring them home.

Pig&Hen will save your life, even in a tight situation.

Their bracelets are handmade in Amsterdam, using authentic ship rope...they carry on the Dutch legacy.

Yes, Smitten.

reclaimed wood...Happy 4th y'all! - Holstee

cause conscious, conservation, ethical, gifts, reclaimed wood, upcyclededen tirlComment
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How about displaying pics, art, inspirational memes or quotes in this absolutely delicious alternative to a classic frame.  Reclaimed wood, simple, elegant...stylish.

Holstee met the team from Urban Ashes, a company that creates with reclaimed wood, and also works and trains formerly incarcerated individuals.

The frames are handcrafted using wood taken from deconstructed homes and buildings in the Detroit Metro Area...excellent!! (The frames themselves are put together in Ann Arbor, MI.)

"We are proud that through our work with Urban Ashes, we are able to give both the wood of these frames, and the craftsman and women who assemble them, a second chance." ~ Holstee

Holstee also creates outstandingly dynamic letterpress stationary, cards and paper goods made from 50% elephant poo and 50% recycled paper! Handmade, acid free and 100% natural.

Reclaimed wood...elephant poo?

Totally Smitten!

breaking a cycle through craftsmanship - Lamon Luther

cause conscious, conservation, ethical, reclaimed wood, upcyclededen tirlComment
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Lamon Luther is a furniture company who, in their own words, “turn brokenness into beauty”. Brian Preston founded Lamon Luther in 2007 after meeting a group of homeless men living in a tent village in the woods of suburban Georgia.  After learning that many of the men were skilled construction workers and laborers who lost jobs after the economic crisis, Preston realized that meaningful employment was the key to transitioning out of addiction and homelessness. He started first by picking up men each day to take odd jobs, and slowly grew into a furniture company.  Providing hope, pride, and a source of income has made all the difference in the lives of Lamon Luther’s craftsmen.

Brian Preston

Brian Preston

Today, partnering with huge companies like West Elm has allowed Lamon Luther to grow into a steady and reliable employment source for skilled laborers who strive to break their cycle of poverty.  Using over 240,000 lbs of reclaimed materials and hiring only homeless or transitioning craftsmen, Lamon Luther has built thousands of beautiful tables, cabinets, bookshelves and benches in Douglasville, GA.  

Strong, hopeful and Smitten.

release your Love - Unlock Hope, Africa key necklace

cause conscious, ethical, girls, jewelry, necklaces, neckwear, upcyclededen tirlComment
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Unlock Hope’s Africa Key Necklace is a beautiful gift  with a very serious mission as it’s namesake.  A relatively new organization with an ambitious focus, Unlock Hope works hard to fully fund the Think Humanity Hostel in Uganda solely through their sales!

Too often, girls in small villages do not advance past primary school, often leading to early marriages and large families that are difficult to care for without any education or skills.  In 2012, the Think Humanity Hostel began in Uganda as a place for 30 orphaned girls to break the cycle of poverty with an education, basic life skills, and entrepreneurial training in a yearly “Girls' Leadership Summit”.  Think Humanity believes that “patience pains, but later pays”, and the success of the girls living in their hostel is proof of that being true. Unlock Hope has an exclusive partnership with Think Humanity, and because of their sales were able to 100% fund the hostel’s budget last year!  

Unlock Hope’s Africa Key necklace is a great reminder of how much has already been achieved, as well as how much more is still needed globally.

Hopeful and Smitten.

good girl gifts - Anekdot

cause conscious, conservation, ethical, fashion, girls, loungewear, panties, upcyclededen tirlComment
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Beautiful designs and an innovative approach to creation make Anekdot a notablySmitten favorite!

Pictured here is the Cherry Blossom Set. Sheer, pink and perfect.

Anekdot is an innovative and unique company that approaches fashion and creativity in a totally revolutionary way.  Rather than designing undergarments and seeking textiles to fulfill those visions, they focus first on the fabrics and allow those vintage and reclaimed textiles to dictate the designs and collections.  

The result of this process is a beautiful collection of bras, knickers and loungewear that leaves a significantly smaller ecological footprint by minimizing waste and shifting the fashion industry’s level of responsibility. 

Anekdot turns left-behinds and leftovers into beautiful, wearable collections!  

Forward-thinking...We're Smitten.

the perfect gift = Wello WaterWheel

cause conscious, conservation, ethical, upcycled, watereden tirlComment
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Cynthia Koenig has spent the last two years creating an extremely innovative solution to a very real problem in Rajathsan: the gathering and storing of clean water.  Simply put, water collecting eats up a large portion of the day for many women and is very taxing on the body.  The Wello WaterWheel is a deceptively simple tool that allows up to 45liters of water at a time to be gathered and safely stored by simply pushing the wheel like a cart. 

Wello claims that 1 in 7 people globally lives more than a kilometer from the nearest water source, and most women carry 20 liters on average (weighing around 45lbs) at a time.  It is also estimated that 75% of the girls between the ages of 15-17 in Rajathsan drop out of school to help with the household.  Water gathering is a slow, tiring process and almost exclusively a woman’s job.  

With the WaterWheel, women are able to dramatically improve their daily life with an estimated 35 hours a week saved by no longer gathering water in a traditional method!  They have time to work a job and produce income, have more water each day to keep their home clean, are able to properly hydrate their families, and can create better irrigation for their crops.  All of these factors are key elements to breaking the poverty cycle.

Interested in donating.

We’re so excited to see Wello reach their full potential as they begin distributing WaterWheels this year.  

Inspired and Smitten.

recycled rubber bangles - Made With Love Project

bangles, bracelets, cause conscious, fair trade, fashion, gifts, girls, jewelry, upcyclededen tirlComment
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These vivid, recycled, wrapped, rubber bangles are so well constructed and hip, they make me happy!

Made With Love bracelets are made by a Women's Cooperative in Djenne', Mali, West Africa.

In 2007 designer Mary Jane Marcasiano formed MADE WITH LOVE. MWL is a global call to action, dedicated to raising funds and awareness for NGOs aiding women and children. Through the production and sale of products that provide a fair income for women in Brazil and Africa, Made With Love is addressing the need for aid.

Made With Love works in tandem with the Cygnet Foundation, which through the proceeds realized from art-related programs, seeks to help those in need: women and children, the homeless, the hungry as well as abandoned and endangered animals. 

The women are paid a fair price for their work, so the money the bracelets provide create a means of support, and are sold to raise funds for L'Empire des Enfants.

L'Empire des Enfants is a center for homeless children from the streets of Dakar, Senegal. L'Empire grants shelter, meals, education and training programs. They also work with local organizations to return homeless children to their families.

Smitten.

a touch of cream and gold, ethical neck-lace - 31 Bits

beads, cause conscious, ethical, fair trade, fashion, jewelry, necklaces, pretty, upcyclededen tirlComment
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Gracefully wrapped beads, delicately strung together to create dazzling neckwear. I couldn't love 31 Bits more!!

Perfectly named The Romantic...it is whimsical, hip and pretty. A simple strand of gold accent beads adorned by a row of marble shaped paper beads, here shown in Cream and Gold.

The Romantic is also available in: Cream, Black, Multi and Mint.

- Handmade in Uganda

- Beads are made from recycled paper

- Approximately 29" when laid flat

- Single strand

- Fastens with a button clasp

All their beads are made from recycled paper. "All accessories are handmade in Uganda with exceptional quality and sophisticated design."

More information on 31 Bits from notablySmitten.

Always and forever...Smitten. 

upcycled neckwear - Article 22

cause conscious, fashion, gifts, jewelry, necklaces, neckwear, upcyclededen tirlComment
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This Talisman necklace is a magnificent, elegant piece of jewelry...with an extraordinary story.

I introduced Article 22 to notablySmitten last year...and I am thrilled to continue to write about this unprecedented company.

Made by artisans in Laos. These jewelry pieces are made from a combination of Vietnam War era bombs, plane parts, and other aluminum scrap. Each Peacebomb is hand poured and cast in wood and ash molds.

This gorgeous neckpiece comes complete with story card and hand-woven cotton pouch.

Your choice of chain: rose gold, yellow gold or sterling silver.

Forever Smitten.

upcycling residuals - supporting notablySmitten!

cause conscious, upcyclededen tirlComment
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In August I came forward to speak about my experiences while working on the "The Cosby Show" back in 1989.

Though the show has been dropped from many networks that were still airing re-runs, I am still receiving residual checks.

I recently received my first couple of checks since coming forward.

This post is to share that these most recent checks, as well as any that come to me in the future, will be entirely donated to notablySmitten.com. The money will go to the running, the advertising and the support of all of the companies and organizations that notablySmitten...is Smitten by!

I am grateful to be able to use this money for the growth of this (joy generating for me) seed that is notablySmitten, to help it fully bloom.

Thank you for shopping through us! I am Smitten!

random acts of flowers

cause conscious, charity, conservation, flowers, girls, upcyclededen tirlComment
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It's so simple, so loving...I'm crazy about Random Acts of Flowers!

RAF recycles and repurposes flowers and distributes them to individuals in healthcare facilities across the country...so cool!!

Random Acts of Flowers’ mission is driven by floral recipients, and strives to be a 100% recycling organization.

With more than 500 volunteers making up the core of the operations and mission fulfillment around the country, if you've got the time, they would love to include you in the volunteer team at a branch near you.

Please check out their story here.

Totally Smitten!

vegan goodness - Matt & Nat

100% vegan, bags, cause conscious, conservation, ethical, fashion, upcyclededen tirlComment
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I would be totally remiss to not include Matt & Nat (Vegan handbags) on my shopping blog at this stage! I've recently been looking for a new summer bag...I truly have found nothing I feel good about purchasing. Then I came across this red cross body from Matt & Nat...sold!

Founded by Montreal-based designer Inder Bedi in 1997, Matt & Nat offer sophisticated styles, a delicious palette of colors, and environmentally conscious, well-designed vegan handbags to the world of fashion.

The name is inspired by MAT(T)erial and NATure, and “means exploring the synergy between the two, the reflection of one on the other."

“At Matt & Nat, we live by a simple motto, ‘Live beautifully’. Living beautifully means appreciating the humanity, creativity and positivity found in all of us. Our values include social responsibility, excellence, inclusiveness, integrity, learning, authenticity, and, of course, love. We are inspired by the textures and hues of nature, and to better protect it, we aim to constantly better our ways.”

Crafted from smooth Vegan leather and lined with 100% recycled plastic bottles, the entire Matt & Nat line is good for animals, the planet, and us two legged creatures as well.

The concern for sustainability is evident in their manufacturing process and their usage of sustainable materials such as rubber and cork. You can read about their ethics & sustainability practices here.

I am entirely Smitten with Matt & Nat's genius craftsmanship and inspirational business practices!!

Check them out on social media...they've got a lot to share! 

paper triangle drop earrings - Global Goods Partners

cause conscious, earrings, ethical, fair trade, fashion, gifts, jewelry, upcyclededen tirlComment
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These entirely chic, lightweight, geometric lovelies are made from stacked, glued, cut and sanded recycled magazine pages! Totally modern, totally original, swank, sustainable, everyday accessories.

These beautiful earrings are:

~ Made from 100% recycled magazines

~ 3/4"W x 3/4"L, hangs 3"

~ Choose from Aqua, Black, Pink, Orange and Green

Both professionals in International Development, it was part of Catherine Lieber Shimony and Joan Shifrin's job to travel to impoverished areas around the world to see what could be improved. What they began to witness over and over again, were creative, energized women producing magnifient handmade goods...yet, they lacked any access to sustainable markets in which to sell their products.

Catherine and Joan had witnessed women in marginalized communities throughout Asia, Africa, and the US being able to advance the wellness of their families when their income was stabilized. In 2005, the friends founded Global Goods Partners to create a practical pathway for women to generate income opportunities and gain access into the consumer marketplace for handmade, fair trade merchandise.

Global Goods Partners (GGP) is a nonprofit social enterprise dedicated to alleviating poverty and promoting social justice and empowers women to create sustainable change.

Once again, Smitten!