The sustainable lifestyle community is expanding at light speed. As we encounter other like-minded peeps, advocates and pioneers we are in grateful awe that we are not alone with our flax seeds, bamboo floors and hemp t-shirts. Yet we are not always witness to the process, the often bumpy journey from then and now - we only see what we perceive as the well-packaged end result. Here you'll find stories of city moms, diverse green families, sustainable designers and social advocates. PROFILES aims to share their stories of life and business transformation, honoring their commitment to conscious living, navigating the personal and political and keeping a sense of humor and joy.
Judith Treanor, founder and curator of TEMPLES and MARKETS. Judith is a Sydney based mum who has been holidaying, shopping and eating her way through South East Asia since 1997. What continues to lure her to the region is the buzz of the night markets, the serenity of a resort spa and the heat of the food. She loves the contrasts - a visit to an ancient peaceful temple followed by a ride in a tuk-tuk through noisy bustling streets. This addiction to the culture and respect for is traditional craftsmanship is evident as you peruse her online boutique. A UK expat, TEMPLES and MARKETS is the sustainable union of a notable career in buying and merchandising departments for the likes of House of Frasier and Harrods and a passion for exotic luxury experiences and indigenous fair-trade products. What makes her product-line and business model remarkable are her keen eye for design, commitment to ethical trade and the unique items that have been personally sourced from designers, artisans or social enterprisers. Here are her meditations on holiday shopping and the art of giving and receiving with a global-minded spirit. And remember to check out her guest style editor post in the INNOVATIONS section.
My online store Temples and Markets showcases Unique and Artisan made Gifts, ethically Sourced from Artisan Groups, Emerging Designers and Social Enterprises in S.E Asia.
I’ve also just opened a Pop Up Shop in Surry Hills, Sydney which will stay open to the public until Xmas Eve. It’s been a joy exposing my fabulous finds to the non-virtual world!
As a former “rehabilitated shopping addict” today I feel strongly that it’s time we all take a more conscious approach to our Christmas shopping and take a step back from Meaningless Gift Buying. The scourge of buying unwanted gifts that ends up in landfill in the New Year is so damaging to the environment. Furthermore, when you consider how cheap and throw away merchandise is manufactured it’s absolutely no good for humanity either.
I’m encouraging everyone this year to think more carefully before making a purchase and ask yourself if the purchase will make a difference to the recipient and in turn the person who made it?
Every product I source and include in my store has a meaning behind it; I showcase gorgeous and unique pieces that are handmade by resilient women from marginalized or impoverished areas or emerging designers who have a fascinating history that got them to where they are today. I feel fortunate to have found my life’s purpose and that is to help trade these inspirational artisans into a better life.
What excites me the most are the amazing products in my store that have been handcrafted from re-cycled materials, each with powerful stories behind them and each with a designer edge. The growing movement of no waste fashion is one we should all be getting behind.
In the same way there is a growing movement towards organic food and knowing where our food comes there is also a growing movement towards knowing where our fashion, accessories and gifts are coming from. Christmas is the perfect time to join this movement and Shop Ethically. Imagine telling the story behind the gift you bought to the gift recipient. Wouldn’t that be a Win-Win for all?
Photos © Temples and Markets, Pinterest, A Joyful Journey
Read more about ethical holiday shopping. Judith gives The Homesteadista her edits for what to buy this season for your significant other, BFF, small child and teenager with her guest curator post. There's even a perk to shopping now! As she said, "win-win"!