I have become addicted to YouTube. Second only to The Guardian and The BBC website. How come the internet can become so addictive? I am reasonably confident that in the future I will not look back, sigh fondly and think “I’m so pleased I looked at the news incessantly”. However……YouTube is the new thing for me. We are developing our own channel and while meandering around the eclectic, sprawling, enlightening, frightening, unpleasant, inspiring range of videos, I came across this one – Change Your Shoes.
There is an app to support it so that I could go on a virtual march to Brussels. At the end of the campaign there will be a petition asking EU policy makers to prioritise regulating the shoe industry. When we purchase clothing, shoes, food, anything really, it is so easy to just not even think about how they were made and who made them. Sometimes we want to close our eyes and shut down our curiosity because the whole world seems such a crazy, barbaric, place and it can feel overwhelming. Especially if you watch as much news channels as I do – the bad stuff gets all the headlines.
But I can make a difference. Watching this video made me feel positive. Because it reminded me – if I ask a few questions when I buy things, is this local produce when I eat in a restaurant? Who made these shoes and what do you know about them? How were these handbags made, who made them? Its not enough that they look or taste beautiful – who made them, how they were treated, what they are made of, has an influence on how beautiful they really are.
What Daisy Did is a local company who really do know who make their handbags. I have a bag and a purse and two of my friends following Christmas have bags and my niece a purse. These bags really are beautiful inside and out – whenever someone says “I love your bag Susan” I immediately launch into the sustainable, ethical, story behind each of them.
Here at Cotton Roots our range of Fairtrade clothing and textiles is also beautiful and fascinating to me. I adore knowing where the cotton came from – Pratima Organic Growers Group in Odisha India, that Sreeranga has organised our order for us, that Armstrong Knitting Mills spun the cotton for us, that Suvastra made the items for us.
Our new delivery of Fairtrade tea towels and Fairtrade shopping bags thrill me.
Sign up for the virtual march to Brussels on the app here