Heart Jewelry for Valentines Day!

Spiral Heart Jewelry Pendant by K Robins Designs.Hearts, Hearts, and More Hearts — Designed and Crafted by Women Jewelers!  Share the beautiful and loving inspiration of Heart-Inspired, Heart-Infused pendants to show the love you feel!

Loving Kindness Heart Jewelry Pendant by K Robins Designs.Whether your passion is sterling silver or bronze, the energy of the Earth encircles every piece of our beautiful heart jewelry and accessories.  Each piece contains the loving wisdom and passion of women jewelry designers and crafters from around the country.

Infinite Love Heart Jewelry Pendant by K Robins Designs. K Robins Designs: Many of my jewelry designs come from my fascination with the language of symbols and how the art of different cultures and times echoes around the world. All cultures surround themselves with symbols and naturally pass them reverently from generation to generation. These symbols lift up and guide us through life’s interwoven cycles of birth, life, death and rebirth.

Forget-Me-Not Heart Jewelry Pendant by Jane Iris Designs.Jane Iris Designs: From the subconscious to design, you will find a part of yourself in our  Jewelry Collection. Jane Iris jewelry is proudly made by four women casters in America, and finished by Patti Ann Sansome, owner of Jane Iris Desgns. Woman owned and operated for 19 years!

Forget-Me-Not Heart Jewelry Necklace with Amethyst Drop by Jane Iris Designs.Divinity is based on mysteries. The Ancients conceived of divinity based on the important mysteries of their time: cycles of birth, life & death, fertility & survival. Our desire for self-awareness makes our emotions, dreams and intuitions the mysteries of our lives; it is a basis for the mythologies of our time.

See our Video on Heart Jewelry. Click on the Heart Jewelry images above  to learn more about our Woman Made and Crafted Jewelry.  Thank you for shopping Fair Trade, Green, and Woman Made!

Women are a Sustainable Economic Development Solution!

We women are a Sustainable Economic Development Solution, as reported in this  article in The Daily Beast, by Melanne Verveer and Kim Azzarelli on Jan 25, 2013. Article copied below:

“At Davos Investing in Women Emerges as a Business Strategy: Companies are learning that when they support women—as customers, employees, leaders, future investors, and partners—both their businesses and communities win.

Here in Davos, Switzerland, at the World Economic Forum, much of the discussion is about economic growth. The International Monetary Fund’s Christine Lagarde inspired those attending to focus on the power of what she termed “inclusive growth”: “the evidence is clear, as is the message: when women do better, economies do better.” Today, visionary companies that initially embraced this notion through corporate philanthropy are now making investments in women a pillar of their business strategies.

Christine Lagarde at Devos, Switzerland, World Economic Forum 1/25/13

Christine Lagarde, Managing Director of the International Monetary Fund speaking at the annuall meeting in Davos, Switzerland 1-23-13.

In recent years, investing in women has become more than inspiring rhetoric or good PR for a company. It’s now becoming a core business strategy yielding quantifiable returns. As Secretary of State Hillary Clinton explained at an Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation meeting in 2011, to “achieve the economic expansion we all seek, we need to unlock a vital source of growth that can power our economies in the decades to come.” By “increasing women’s participation in the economy and enhancing their efficiency and productivity,” the secretary said, “we can have a dramatic impact on the competitiveness and growth of our economies.”

These dividends come in part as a result of the growing economic influence wielded by women. In the United States, women control or influence more than 80 percent of purchasing decisions. Globally they are responsible for $20 trillion in spending, a figure expected to rise to $28 trillion by 2014. Goldman Sachs has found that it is women who are redefining markets and creating growth by focusing their spending power on purchases such as food, health care, education, clothing, consumer durables, and financial services. And, according to a Deloitte study, women’s earning power is growing faster than men’s in the developing world, where their earned incomes have increased by 8.1 percent compared with men’s 5.8 percent. As Muhtar Kent, the CEO of Coca-Cola, recently stated, “The truth is that women are already the most dynamic and fastest-growing economic force in the world today.”

Top books for women by women.

Top Books by Women for Women. Support Your Women Owned Bookstores!

More and more companies are doing the math and investing in what Booz & Co. has dubbed the Third Billion—women globally—a market segment large enough to rival China or India. The early corporate leaders focused on philanthropic and corporate social-responsibility (CSR) initiatives and have been in industries that market specifically to women: consumer packaged goods and retail and fashion-related companies. The Body Shop and Aveda created significant philanthropies for women and girls, and the Nike Foundation launched its Girl Effect movement, while Liz Claiborne focused on violence-prevention efforts. Many companies donated heavily to breast-cancer research and prevention.

Women Eco Fashion Designers for Apparel and Accessories.

Women Eco Fashion Designers for Apparel and Accessories.

Now, even industries traditionally considered men’s—automotive, oil, investment banking—are finding common cause with women and girls. Encouraged in part by the microfinance movement, their efforts often focus on women’s empowerment through entrepreneurship. For instance, Goldman Sachs’s 10,000 Women initiative has given more than 7,000 women across the globe economic opportunity through training and mentoring, resulting in growth for a significant number of women-owned businesses. ExxonMobil’s Women’s Economic Opportunity Initiative also supports female entrepreneurs by helping to facilitate the networks they need to grow their businesses.

The rewards are becoming demonstrable. Significant research from the World Bank to the public and private sectors has shown how investments in women yield a “double dividend”: women are more likely than men to invest their incomes in their families and communities, driving GDP up and illiteracy and mortality rates down. This double benefit, combined with pure market forces, now presents Wall Street and women with a unique and mutually beneficial opportunity.

So how can more of the world’s global economic leaders take advantage of this convergence of trends and harness the power of women for business growth and progress?

“Women are already the most dynamic and fastest-growing economic force in the world today.”

First, embrace a broader definition of corporate citizenship, one that goes beyond traditional notions of CSR. Instead of treating women solely as recipients of philanthropy, companies should see them as partners critical to every part of the value chain—marketing, sales, distribution, research and development, and management. For example, Coca-Cola recently launched a $500 million program to include 5 million women across its entire business structure, or corporate value chain, by 2020. Funded by the for-profit business, not the foundation, the program aims to include more women in every area of operations, including training them as business owners to market and sell products. Direct-selling companies such as Avon, Mary Kay, and Tupperware have long understood the value of women entrepreneurs as a distribution channel—and drivers of the bottom line. The direct-selling model gives women the training, credit, and support to start their own businesses by selling company products. It has been particularly successful in developing world markets with infrastructure challenges. Indeed, women have been known to paddle down the Amazon to sell products in remote communities.

Handwoven by Women's Cooperatives around the world. Buy Fair Trade, Green, and Woman Made!

Handwoven by Women’s Cooperatives around the world. Buy Fair Trade, Green, and Woman Made!

Second, commit to greater diversity in management and corporate governance. There is no question that too many executive women today are still only tapping at that proverbial glass ceiling. As a result, corporations continue to deprive themselves of the very talents, energies, and insights that can propel growth and market opportunities. A recent Catalyst survey found a strong correlation between gender diversity in the leadership ranks of a business and that company’s performance. For instance, according to a Deloitte report, when women were given a significant role in product development at Campbell Soup, they came up with a new line that became a $200 million business almost overnight.

Third, aggressively integrate women-run small and medium-size businesses into the supply chain. By seeking out and working with women-owned firms, companies can not only diversify their supply chains and mitigate risk, but also support women entrepreneurs and expand small and medium-size enterprises (SMEs), which are known engines of GDP growth. Walmart is one example of a company using its enormous scale to drive business to women-owned sources. And organizations such as WEConnect that focus on the value of women in the supply chain are linking large companies like Pfizer, Microsoft, and Marriott with women vendors.

Fourth, eliminate the barriers women face in accessing finance and credit. Around the world, women face greater hurdles than their male counterparts in receiving financial services. As a result, women are less able to make the investments that can maximize profits and ensure their businesses reach their full potential. More financial institutions should recognize that women are a proven low-risk, high-yield investment and create products to better serve women as a market segment. Companies working to integrate women entrepreneurs into their supply chains could establish relationships with banks to encourage them to use purchase order agreements with their companies as collateral. Companies can also invest in women’s entrepreneurship funds or venture capital firms that specifically serve women-owned businesses.

Natural Body Products by Women Owned Businesses.

Natural Body Products by Women Owned Businesses. Safe for the Environment, and Safe for Our Families.

Finally, take the lead in making the evidence-based case to governments that women are valuable—crucial—economic actors. In an era when governments around the world are trying to make do with less, it is essential that businesses and potential investors make national and local governments understand that investments in women’s education, health, and economic security and are important factors in big businesses’ decisions to expand into local markets are also investments that will create new jobs and lift economies.

Clearly, women are good for business, but is business good for women? Aligning the bottom line with women’s advancement is not a panacea for the plight of women worldwide. Critical human-rights issues must be addressed before women can truly advance. In many parts of the world, laws and customs still stand in the way of women’s empowerment—and we all must support efforts to reform these systems. At the same time, we must acknowledge that economic independence is critical to advancing those rights. The two are inseparable.

Art and Culture, Shop Woman Made Green and Fair Trade Products.

Art and Culture, Shop Woman Made Green and Fair Trade Products.

Ultimately, converting women’s fast-growing economic influence into real social, economic, and political power will take time and perseverance. But the momentum of the global marketplace, should we choose to sustain it, can provide us a way forward. As corporate leaders look for resilient dynamism and growth in 2013, there are no better partners poised to deliver profits and progress across geographies than the Third Billion [women!].”

This informative and inspiring article was written by Melanne Verveer,  U.S ambassador for global women’s issues, and Kim Azzarelli, President of the Women in the World Foundation and the 2012 recipient of the NY State Bar Association Ruth G. Schapiro Award.

Thank you, Melanne and Kim, for a great article inspiring women and Market Access for Women as a Sustainable Development Solution!

Handcrafted Fashion Feeds Ethiopia at Fresh and Green Academy

Fashion Feeds Ethiopia, handwoven scarves by the Mothers Cooperative at Fresh And Green Academy

The Mothers Coop at Fresh And Green Academy

Fashion that Feeds! Handwoven scarves by members of the Mothers Cooperative at Fresh and Green Academy, a school for impoverished children in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia. Every item sold helps the women provide food for their families.

Some Fun Facts About Ethiopia!  Did you know:

Ethiopia is nearly twice the size of Texas.
Ethiopia is the birthplace of coffee, and they have official coffee ceremonies in family homes. If you are offered coffee, it is rude to decline.
Ethiopia claims the final resting place of the Ark of the covenant at a chapel in the holy city of Aksum, which used to be the capital of Ethiopia.
Ethiopia has 63 airports. Only 17 of them have a paved runway. 
In the Ethiopian Calendar there are 13 months. Each month has 30 days and the last month has only 5 or 6. The New Year is celebrated on September 11th and they are almost eight years behind our western calendar.
Fashion Feeds EthiopiaEthiopian homes are a traditionally a round hut called a Tukul. Families like to use magazines or newspapers as “wallpaper” in their homes. The floor is dirt, the walls are either sticks and/or mud, and the roof is made out of a long grass called Tef, a gluten free grain that is also eaten.  I have enjoyed Tef “bread” at our local Ethiopian restraurant many times. 
A large portion of the Ethiopian population claims descent from King Solomon of Jerusalem, and Makeda, the queen of Sheba?

Buying these beautiful handwoven scarves add Eco-Fashion to your wardrobe, while helping Ethiopian women and their families out of poverty. Thank you for shopping Fair Trade, Green, and Woman Made!

 

Jane Iris Designs – 20 Years of Woman Made Women’s Jewelry

Spirit Healer Sterling Silver Pendant with choice of garnet, opal, ruby and more.

Spirit Healer

I just added more of Jane Iris Designs beautiful jewelry to the Apparel & Accessories on GreenWomanStore.com. Pendants, rings and earrings, Goddesses, Labrys, Ankhs, and Conga Drums in bronze and sterling, with garnets and opals, citrine and lapis, rubies and more. Jane Iris is one of the great designers of women’s jewelry in our time.

I remember discovering Jane Iris jewelry when I lived in Berkeley, California, in the l990’s. Hers was some of the first dramatic, spiritual and woman-identified jewelry that mirrored my growing interest in ancient and sustainable cultures, environmentalism and spirituality. Her women’s jewelry makes tangible the strength, truth and integrity of women’s culture anciently and today.

When I sell Jane Iris jewelry at the Michigan Women’s Festival, women tell me, “I have that piece, and that one too.  And I gave that piece to a dear friend.”  I love that we women share our sacred possessions, and that we keep supporting the craftswomen who inspired us when they, and we, were much younger.

Today, I am delighted to have added some of my favorite pieces, and hopefully some of your favorites too!  Surely, we will be adding more in the future.  I created a video sharing some of the new beautiful woman made Jane Iris Designs women’s jewelry pieces: Spirit Healer, Sardinian Goddess, Ankh, Labrys, Conga Drums, Truth Ring, and many more.  Enjoy!

Going Green: What it takes

Brickenmore Fire Starters by Eagle Valley Eco Fuel

Brickenmore FireStarters made of natural field straw, horse manure, hay mixture, straw dust and paraffin by Eagle Valley Eco Fuel in Connecticut.

What it takes to “Go Green” is a lot of dedication!  Dedication to our children and future generations so that they will have the resources they need to thrive.  This is the concept Indigenous Peoples call, “Taking into consideration the next seven generations.”

Women's Power DVD by Max Dashu

A panoramic view of female leadership, creativity, wisdom, and courage, around the world and over thousands of years. Female spheres of power in politics, economics, religion, medicine, arts and letters. Women’s Power DVD by Max Dashu.

Going green requires dedication to the earth and her living, thriving resources that make our lives possible and equitable.  Dedication to our Self, for when we do what is truly right for our Self, it is right for everyone and the earth.  This is living in balance and we have done it in pre-history for thousands of years, everywhere on this planet, all cultures and in all traditions if we look back far enough.  This is the evidence of today’s  archeology and anthropology.

Ashley Urth Bag created from recycled juice boxes

Eco-Chic Handbags and Totes made from recycled juice boxes, magazines and shells by Urth Bags.

Today, we are fortunate to have lots of opportunities and alternatives.  Sustainable alternatives to restrictive ways of commerce and corporate greed.  We have many new small businesses starting up, growing right out of the soil of unemployment and the necessity of working where our passion leads us.

My favorite part of GreenWomanStore.com is hearing the stories of women entrepreneurs, and learning of the ways they act out their passions.  All ways that benefit consumers, families, women and the Earth.  Women are manufacturing products that inspire more products, inspiring more women around the world to live and consume sustainably.

Fashion Feeds Ethiopia Copper Beige Handmade Scarf

Handmade Scarves by Fashion Feeds Ethiopia

This is the best of capitalism.  These are the social dynamics that drive sustainable capitalism, the way we want it to be realized.  Products that enrich our lives and that make us feel proud we are making a contribution to healthy living, for the artists and manufacturers (Fair Trade), and our own families.

“Market Access” began in my mind twenty years ago when I learned of a study asking African village women what they needed most.  They cried out for “Market Access.” We all need market access for our goods and services.  I am proud and passionate about GreenWomanStore.com.  Every day, we empower consumers and women entrepreneurs, solving everyday problems and wishes for a greening public that cares where it’s products come from.