When I spend my hard-earned dough I’d like to know where it’s going. Who is it benefiting (or harming)? What kinds of resources were used? Is it really worth the price (in terms of labor, effort, materials, etc)?
So in recent years, I’ve become really selective about where I shop. As I’ve said before, I avoid the big box and big name retailers (whenever possible) in favor of local, indie biz. Think Etsy vs Banana Republic, eBay vs Crate and Barrel. Of course there are times when it’s really difficult to completely ignore the big boys, like when you need a paper towel holder or new toilet seat.
Thankfully it’s getting easier and easier to find alternative sources for goods. Like the new responsible marketplace by eBay, World of Good. They’ve got a pretty big range of fair trade and/or eco-friendly stuff, from clothing and jewelry to furniture and toys. What’s really great is that they break it down in terms of the impact your purchase has. They call this a Goodprint and these are the categories: people positive, eco positive, animal friendly, and supports a cause.
It’s feel-good shopping, certified by third parties with their Trustology verification system. Many of their verifiers and sellers have been in the fair trade game for years, including Co-op America and Ten Thousand Villages.
Here’s a random selection of fun things you can get from World of Good:
Where does your hard-earned dough go?