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Lauren_B

Johannesburg, South Africa

Program and Operations Manager

Member since November 05, 2007


  • Green_design_177_

    February 2008

    Green was the theme at the February New York International Gift Fair and sustainability was the trend. Aid to Artisans' eco products from projects in El Salvador, Colombia and South Africa were right in step.

    Vendors at the recent New York International Gift Fair reported that business was indeed off, on an average between 10-15% but, they said, not as bad as might have been expected with the stock market headlines and the general countrywide economic jitters. The aisles were often crowded, as even in worrisome times retailers need something enticing to sell. (Pictured are Artecnica's green recycled bottles from Guatemala).

    GREEN was the clear market trend along with the now widely adopted Fair Trade emphasis. Throughout the show from Handmade to Accent on Design the emphasis was sustainability. Widespread concern for our planet's renewable resources meant that some vendors even took the trouble to list every material used in a product, the source, and the process employed in production.

    Eco-Chic from El Salvador, Colombia and South Africa

    ATA has been working "green" for years and we had many green products in our booth. Magazine editors looking for eco-chic - and they all were - could choose from El Salvador's eco-products: recycled leather bags (from leftover factory leather bits and pieces, softened, much like paper pulp and reconstituted into leather again); lace-like wicker baskets and trunks from Fibras Naturales; natural indigo t...

  • Green_design_177_

    February 2008

    Green was the theme at the February New York International Gift Fair and sustainability was the trend. Aid to Artisans' eco products from projects in El Salvador, Colombia and South Africa were right in step.

    Vendors at the recent New York International Gift Fair reported that business was indeed off, on an average between 10-15% but, they said, not as bad as might have been expected with the stock market headlines and the general countrywide economic jitters. The aisles were often crowded, as even in worrisome times retailers need something enticing to sell. (Pictured are Artecnica's green recycled bottles from Guatemala).

    GREEN was the clear market trend along with the now widely adopted Fair Trade emphasis. Throughout the show from Handmade to Accent on Design the emphasis was sustainability. Widespread concern for our planet's renewable resources meant that some vendors even took the trouble to list every material used in a product, the source, and the process employed in production.

    Eco-Chic from El Salvador, Colombia and South Africa

    ATA has been working "green" for years and we had many green products in our booth. Magazine editors looking for eco-chic - and they all were - could choose from El Salvador's eco-products: recycled leather bags (from leftover factory leather bits and pieces, softened, much like paper pulp and reconstituted into leather again); lace-like wicker baskets and trunks from Fibras Naturales; natural indigo t...

  • Mexico_potter_177_

    Read the original Chicago Tribune article here, which talks about the life changing efforts of Aid to Artisans recent program in Mexico.

    "Changing deadly artisan customs" Mexican artisans giving up lead -- for the sake of families and consumers By Oscar Avila | Chicago Tribune correspondent January 20, 2008 Copyright © 2008, Chicago Tribune

    SANTA FE DE LA LAGUNA, Mexico - As Nicolas Fermin tends to the clay vases and pots in his kiln, he is keeping alive the artisan traditions that the Purepecha Indians have built for generations along the shores of Lake Patzcuaro.

    But about a decade ago, Fermin's family inherited another legacy of this art form.

    Pregnant with their second child, Fermin's wife, Maria del Rosario Lucas, suffered a miscarriage like so many women in her community. Warned that the lead glaze of their pottery might be to blame, they tested their toddler, Dulce. Her lead levels were off the charts.

    As U.S. consumers worry about lead in imports from China and elsewhere, some communities just beyond America's borders struggle with the dangers of lead in the products they create. Here in this picturesque corner of Mexico, a non-profit group called Barro Sin Plomo (Clay Without Lead) is trying to persuade the Purepecha people and other Mexican producers to undo their deadly customs.

    In tandem with a separate Mexican government effort, the program has helped Fermin and hundreds of artisans, mainly in western Michoacan, start the process of switching fro...

  • HAND/EYE magazine hits the press

    Communication, Fashion Design

    Handeye_v4_132_

    Aid to Artisans' magazine HAND/EYE, Volume 4, Spring 2008, is out. Published twice a year, it is available to ATA supporters. This issue features collaborations between designers and artisans; industry leader, Artecnica's Stephen Burks with Willard Musaruwa, a wire artist in Cape town; Mimi Robinson's research and rapport with Cajamarca potters and Docey Lewis with world textiles. Don't miss Michael Benanav's portfolio of intimate photographs in the life of India's Maldhari people.

    HAND/EYE celebrates talented members of the design community and the artisan sector, many, but not all actively connected to Aid to Artisans.

    Download an e-copy of ATA's latest Hand/Eye Magazine

My Interests

  • Industrial Design
  • Environmental Design
  • Communication Design
  • Fashion Design
  • Audio/Visual Design