Friday, February 11, 2011


Guatemala Ceramic Heart

Maybe it is the cold winter, maybe it is the news or maybe it is because Valentine's Day is just a few days away. Whatever the reason, we've been meditating about LOVE lately.

Just thinking about LOVE - all sorts of LOVE: romantic, love of family, friends, country, animals, the earth, objects .... --  warms our hearts and makes us smile.

And that leads us to our hearts:

Beautiful to look at and hold.
Hand-crafted from recycled materials and/or in ways that cherish the earth.

It is always a good time to share your LOVE and your heart!

Friday, January 21, 2011


Last night,  we braved the cold and went to a story telling evening with  friends Laurel and Annie. Laurel is a renowned anthropologist, world traveler and ardent book lover.  Having arrived early, Laurel found treasure tomes in the used bookstore. And thick, heavy tomes they were!

While we admired her keen eye for beautiful books, she reached into her small hand bag and pulled out an Original Women hand block printed Indian  eco-shopper. In the 3 seconds it took for the bag to fully unroll, she spontaneously started to list of all the reasons why she LOVES these bags. As the list lengthened and her enthusiasm mounted, her pace quickened and her eyes brightened, she illustrated her reasons with great tips on how she uses them.

We wish we had videoed the wonderful riff. So we've tried to capture the information, since we don't have her smile inducing delivery on video :

  1. They LOOK GREAT. No, they look really really great. I love the different patterns. I love that they are cotton. They look so much better than the nylon or recycled plastic bags.
  2. They are STURDY, hold a lot and heavy objects. They look deceptively small. I carry books all the time and these hold them really well. They are STRONG.
  3. They are LIGHT. I always have one with me. Look it was in this little bag ....
  4. They ROLL UP and can be carried everywhere. When I travel, I pack them in my carry on. After all the security checks, I pull it out, put in all the things I need on the long flights (or short) and don't have to reach into those over stuffed overhead bins.
  5. Since they are so light and EASY TO PACK, they are GREAT GIFTS to bring when traveling. Especially long distances requiring many flights.They've gone to Europe and Asia with me.
  6. MEN LIKE THEM !! My friends' husbands have appropriated their eco-shoppers AND USE THEM ALL THE TIME. Annie (a world traveler herself!!) piped in, yes, yes, my friends in Europe -- the men keep on taking them and using them. Every time I go, I have to bring more, just for the men!
  7. The woman at my local grocery store wouldn't let me leave without writing the web address for Original Women to buy one. And I never use any other bags when buying groceries. This bag is always with me.
  8. They are EASY TO CLEAN.  They can be washed in the washing machine.  I rotate two. And look I've had them for a few years now and look, look how good it looks!
What really warmed our "green" heart, is that these eco-shopping bags have become an integral part of Laurel's life. While we loved the other storytelling event, Laurel wins the prize!

The next time Laurel travels to do field work in Korea, Malaysia, Vietnam or the grocery store, we hope she'll send us a photo of the bags in action!

Share your story or photo with us. We could use lots of heat warming this cold winter ....

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

New beginnings

Vida Bags

The New Year is fast approaching, days will be getting longer and as we review the past year our thoughts are turning to new beginnings and the birth of the New Year.

In 2010, we strengthened our partnership with CARE. And the more we learn about CARE's key program areas, the more we support their efforts to address some of the most basic problems ... like Maternal Health. 

Here are some facts:
  • Every minute a woman dies during pregnancy and childbirth.
  • 99 percent of these deaths occur in the developing world and 80 percent are preventable.
  • Maternal mortality rates have not improved for 20 years.
  • Over half a million women die each year, 400 in the US alone, leaving more than a million children motherless and vulnerable.
  • Pregnancy and childbirth are the leading cause of death and disability for women in developing countries.

And we are so inspired by the action Katherine Schwarzenegger has taken to support CARE and the White Ribbon Alliance in addressing this issue:

After attending a meeting between her mother, Maria Shriver and activist, Sarah Brown, Katherine Schwarzenegger was inspired to help address the issue of Maternal Mortality. Having had no prior knowledge of the overwhelming number of mothers and children that die of pregnancy and birth-related causes around the world, Katherine researched the devastating statistics – every minute one woman dies in childbirth and every year over 1 million children are left motherless.

Katherine decided to take action and the VIDA bag was born. VIDA means life in Spanish and the logo on the bag represents a mother (big heart) and a child (small heart). Sales of the bag benefit CARE and the White Ribbon Alliance, organizations that work to raise awareness of and address the problem of Maternal Mortality.   And the bags were crafted in India by women survivors of abuse and homelessness.

Join us in following Katherine Schwarzenegger’s inspiring lead and help save the lives of Mothers worldwide by purchasing a VIDA bag.


Saturday, December 11, 2010

Join us for a Holiday Celebration. December 13, 2010.

Join us for a festive evening -- drinks, nibbles and shopping! Featuring a new, unique collection of hand crafted creations ... wearable, functional and decorative.

when:      Monday, December 13, 2010, 5:00 - 9:00 pm
where:      Society of Illustrators 128 East 63rd Street (map)

This holiday season, Original Women is offering gifts in all price ranges that make the world more beautiful. We've traveled the globe to bring you new artistry from Chile, Argentina, Honduras, Burkina Faso, Congo, Haiti, Laos and India. Everyone on your list will be inspired by the artistry that improves lives, families and communities.

Can't wait or can't make it to our event?
Shop online and get a 10% discount!

Coupon Code: "HOLIDAYS!"
Valid for 10% off through 12.25.2010

Join us, celebrate and spread the joy!

Become a fan of Original Women on Facebook. We will be featuring special holiday offers and gifts, just for Fans!

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

The Women's Conference

In late October we partnered with CARE at the Women's Conference in Long Beach, CA. Their mission "We empower women to be architects of change."

It was truly inspiring to hear the speakers and meet some of them.

And also to meet the women and men who attended the conference. From the speakers to the woman who recognized us from the More Reinvention Convention in NYC the week before to the women who learned about CARE and Original Women for the first time -- all made our trip to California an outstanding experience.

And the connections keep growing.
We just received and email from someone purchasing holiday gifts on our site.
She said: "... I met you at the Women's Conference... you have a wonderful organization!"

Thanks for the feedback!
It inspires us to keep going and to be the architects of an even more wonderful future.

Wednesday, November 24, 2010


Shop Original Women online from BLACK FRIDAY- November 26, on SMALL BUSINESS SATURDAY Nov. 27 through CYBER MONDAY- NOV. 30, 2010.

Use coupon code SBS11.27.10 for 10% off your purchase.
Valid November 26th through November 30th.


We are thankful for ARTISANS AND ARTISTRY and all the rich and diverse beauty in the world that human hands create.