Thursday, November 4, 2010

Giving Back with NOVICA {GIVEAWAY}

This time of year, you often hear the phrase "It's better to give than to receive" but let's be honest - sometimes it's nice to receive too.  Luckily, by shopping with NOVICA, you can do both simultaneously!

NOVICA was started to help the artists and artisans of the world display their work to a global audience and it really does exactly that.  In conjunction with National Geographic, NOVICA sells products - home decor, jewelry, apparel, gifts and more - made by the citizens of Asia, Africa and Latin America.  What's great is that they let the artists list their products for free and allow them to remain fully independent - each seller is free to raise or lower his or her prices at any time - and I really like that they've set up a microfinance program to help the artisans finance their businesses by providing 0%-interest loans to those unable to obtain them from a traditional bank.  Just by buying, you're helping to change someone's life.  Now that's something I can get behind!

And while it's great to bean artisan on NOVICA, it's even better to be a shopper.  The site is filled with unique and beautiful pieces from all over the globe that you probably wouldn't find anywhere else.  You can read each artist's story while you browse their merchandise and it really personalizes the shopping experience.  Their products would make terrific presents for your friends and family - or even as a little splurge on yourself!  I love this gorgeous Turquoise Dazzle clutch from Radhika in India.

And the colorful Cat's Paradise bag from Brigida in Brazil looks like something you'd find at Anthropologie!

Gulam from India sculpts beautiful pieces out of soapstone, like this Moonlight Jasmine vase.

And the stunning Golden Garden Painted Glass Tray from Asunta in Peru would brighten up any party.

In addition to great gift ideas, NOVICA has a wonderful assortment of holiday decorations and accessories too.  This Ceramic Nativity Scene created by Feriburto in Peru would surely become a family keepsake.

As would the Christmas Dream Serving Tray from Luis in Mexico.

And I know the girls would enjoy hanging these Wooden Santa Ornaments from Made in Bali on the tree!

But my favorite section of NOVICA's site to browse has to be the jewelry.  There are so many amazing pieces that it's hard not to get overwhelmed.  Some of my favorites are the Midnight Express Necklace from Kalyani in India.

The Jasmine in Bloom Bracelet from Ploy in Thailand.

And the Free Spirit Cocktail Ring from Jenny in Indonesia.

When NOVICA offered me a $75 credit to use to try out their site, I added that ring to my cart immediately!  I was pleasantly surprised when it arrived within a week since I had no idea how long it would take to ship from Indonesia.  I opened the package and was so impressed with what I found!  There was a letter from Jenny with more of her story and this perfectly wrapped box.  The paper flower was so pretty.

And the ring inside the box was even prettier!

The stones are lovely and the quality of the ring is fabulous.  I wear it almost every day and always get compliments on it.

Excuse the pictures of my man hands but I love showing the ring off!

I enjoy a piece of jewelry as much as the next girl, but knowing that a local artisan like Jenny created my ring and actually received all of the money for it (as opposed to a middleman retailer) makes it that much more special to me.  So when you're doing your holiday shopping, consider visiting NOVICA and give a gift to more than just the people on your holiday list.

NOVICA is giving one lucky AFOMFT reader a gift as well, in the form of a $75 credit to their site!  To enter, visit NOVICA and post a comment here telling me what you'll put the credit toward if you win (this is mandatory).  For additional entries:
  • Subscribe to AFOMFT or let us know you are a subscriber.
  • Sign up for to the NOVICA newsletter (it's on the bottom right of their site).
  • "Like" AFOMFT on Facebook
  • "Like" NOVICA on Facebook and leave a comment on their wall telling them that A FEW OF MY FAVORITE THINGS sent you. 
  • Ask your friends to "like" AFOMFT on Facebook by sending them this link - - and post a comment here with the names of each one who does.  You'll earn one entry per new friend who "likes" our page and names will be cross-checked.  
  • Follow NOVICA & AFOMFT on Twitter (@novica & @AFOMFT or click the birdie icon on the sidebar) and tweet this post by clicking the graphic above or this giveaway:  It's the Holiday Happening on @AFOMFT with a giveaway-a-day all month! #Win a $75 credit to @novica now -
  • Click here to vote for AFOMFT on Top Baby Blogs and post a comment here that you did - Vote For Us @ Top Baby Blogs.  You can vote once per day per computer so if you vote every day or on different computers, be sure to post one comment for each one.
  • Grab our button and put it on your blog or website and post a link here showing us.
  • Grab our HOLIDAY HAPPENING button and put it on your blog or website and post a link here showing us.
  • Blog or post on Facebook about this giveaway with a link to this post (worth 2 entries so please post two comments) and make sure your comments include a link to your status or blog post.
Please leave a separate comment for each entry (two if you've blogged about the giveaway) and make sure to include a link to your tweet, blog post, etc. All entries must be posted on AFOMFT as a direct comment to this post.  Comments on Facebook will not count as entries.  This giveaway is open to residents of the U.S. only and ends November 11th at 11:59 pm EST. The winners will be selected by and announced on AFOMFT on November 12th. If the winners don't contact AFOMFT within 48 hours, a new drawing will be held so be sure to check back to see if you've won!

Please note that NOVICA provided me with a $75 credit to try out their site for the purpose of this review.  No other compensation was received.  The opinions I've shared of their products are my own and yours may differ.


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