{eco brand} world finds: the search for good things is over

over the summer months i have been reading three books simultaneously in addition to a slew of american + french magazines and of course, the usual fair fashion + clean beauty fare across the internet. reading remains my absolute favorite pastime, and one that is positively therapeutic for me. i never take reading for granted.

in india, 41% of children drop out of school before the 8th grade, according to the world bank group, and half of all girls 15 and older are illiterate. 64% of adolescent girls are forced to leave school early to care for younger siblings, to help run the household or for arranged marriages. 

world finds is a business using fashion + design to combat poverty + illiteracy, and this blooming company, once just a seedling, is now celebrating ten years of creating positive change, building hope + designing sustainable products. world finds is a brand born from travels across continents + across the consciousness of eco entrepreneur kelly weinberger. this is how world finds is transforming communities + providing education for girls in india:

i had the opportunity to meet kelly, the founder of world finds  while in my home state of illinois this past summer. i admit, i was a wee bit distracted while kelly chatted with me of the values she holds dear and how her germinating mind drove her to upstart this ethical fashion company. i confess to being a bit preoccupied by her jewelry. that's because each piece she wore was beautifully designed + highly covetable. 

dressed in a pair of harem pants + a simple black top which proved the perfect backdrop to a pair of shoulder-sweeping, handmade earrings along with a dainty, twisted bangle and layered, mixed-metal rings, kelly's style is remarkably easy + natural. but in this scenario, being distracted by kelly's beautiful baubles is a good thing, i promise.

kelly's story is one of perseverance, one that challenges the very order of fast fashion: kelly had journeyed across nearly 40 countries and witnessed immense poverty and eventually she came to learn of the tremendous potential to assist women's cooperatives, WTO labor organizations + small families of artisans via fair trade {fair trade is a movement that helps workers move toward economic + social self-sufficiency by providing a living wage, access to healthcare + childcare, and ongoing training + education}. 

kelly left a career in marketing to pursue her dream of creating a fair trade business that would harness the high creative power of artisans in developing countries while providing a market for the handmade wares of these talented craftswomen. 

ten years later, with a staff of seven, and with her baubles in nearly 900 retail locations, world finds has found a place in the hearts of those of us seeking insight into our forgotten connections with the workers who make our jewelry + accessories. in addition, world finds founded the girls education fund to provide additional resources + scholarships to marginalized families in artisan communities in india. this means every purchase truly makes à difference.

i listened to kelly as she shared how each piece at world findsis realized: necklaces + clutches are made from recycled kantha quilts; naturally-dyed scarves are hand sewn and unique jewelry pieces are forged by hand. when i wear these pieces, my imagination is enlarged + i feel a sense of exhilaration as well as a bond to the artisans hailing from india, indonesia + bali; i recognize that the allure of each piece lies in its conception + i'm proud to be wearing these pieces, and i'm not at all flummoxed at having been distracted by their beauty. 

to learn more about world finds, skip on over here.

{images by ev // a. smith}