An Ethical Purchase – pjs of all things

A Tibetan tailor is hand-making my son’s PJ’s. As I type.

I’m in Sydney. She’s in Dharamsala (Dalai Lama country) and she and the little company she tailors for has given me the most heart-lifting, warm and fuzzy online purchasing experience ever.  So inspired am I that I want to share it with you.

Engaged in a spot of online shopping the other night, I scoured the net for a pair of jarmies for my son. My criteria was good quality, non-sweat-shop made if possible. I knew they might cost a little more. But what price do you put on ethics and fairly paid happy people?

Here’s what I found!  ”Ethical fashion from the Himalayas” says the tag line.

Intrigued, I paged through the catalogue. Cute PJs. Cute clothes too. I read on. Turns out this company was set up by Aussie designer Frances Carrington who fell in love with Tibetan and Indian culture while travelling there in the 90s. She set up “Eternal Creations” in Dharamsala with just 3 tailors, all political refugees from Tibet. She designs the full range and now employs about 9 people from what I can see.

I ended up ordering 2 lovely pairs of PJs (on sale) and sat back feeling good about my ethical, quality, hand-made purchase.

But here’s the bit that really wowed me.

An hour after my order was sent, I received an email from Kalsang, one of the tailors who is a 24yr old refugee from a yak herding family in Tibet, thanking me for my order and telling me that they will “start working on my lovely selection and despatch them shortly.”  Oh WOW!  I can’t tell you how warm and fuzzy and wonderful I felt receiving that. I’m sure I glowed.

So why am I sharing this with you?

As founder and owner of Sala Verde, I am someone who aspires to offer unique products and a friendly, more informed purchasing experience through my own business. Eternal Creations has done for me what I hope to do for you.

The fundamental aims of Sala Verde are very similar to those of Eternal Creations. We both reject sweat-shop-made mass produced products. Embrace fair trade and a sense of community. Support the talents and skills of traditional artisans and craftsmen. And in Sala Verde’s case, encourage and promote the use of sustainable materials in the furnishings we source and design. No rainforest wood for us.

Have a look at the Eternal Creations website – and glow a little. And please visit the Sala Verde site again too.

I will let you know when I receive the PJs (couple of weeks they told me) and what I think of them. I may share my warm and fuzzies with you again.


Showroom: 81 Dickson Ave., Artarmon, Sydney
Copyright 2013 Sala Verde Design