Saturday, 22 June 2013

Kazuri jewellery - Supporting Fair Trade

Aside from supporting British manufacture, I also like supporting Fair Trade. Fair trade is important to countries where exploitation takes place because farmers and workers are being underpaid for their work. The Fair Trade organisation provides farmers and workers with a respectable salary so they can provide for their families, send their children to school or pay for child care. There are many books about Fair Trade, two of my favourites are Green is the New Black and Eco Chic.

One of the Fair Trade companies I buy from is Kazuri. Kazuri means small and beautiful in Swahili. Kazuri make jewellery and pottery in Nairobi and was set up in 1975. Kazuri is now sold in many independent boutiques in England and also in the department store John Lewis. Each Kazuri piece is made by hand so each one is truly unique.

I have three Kazuri necklaces now. There are many different designs and sizes to suit everybody who loves unique things. The first two necklaces are the Pita Pat style which is quite bold and makes an impact. When I wear one of these I never wear any other jewellery as the necklace is enough.

The first one is Antique Gold 18" Pita Pat and the second is Midnight (almost black) 18" Pita Pat these were purchased from a boutique in Kelso called Zantik.



This one is the tiny smartie Sarah summer ceramic necklace in Nougat/Neutrals. I first saw this in John Lewis and ordered it from their website when I realised I really wanted it a week later.


Kazuri jewellery is well made, lovely and cool to the touch being made from ceramic. I thought I'd share a group shot of my necklace collection. I hope to add more soon.


You can purchase the Kazuri jewellery from www.kazuribeads.co.uk and www.johnlewis.com 

There are other retailers online and you can find them by doing a google search.  You can also find pieces on eBay. The independent retailers I buy Kazuri from are Zantik in Kelso, Scottish Borders and Sorella in Hexham, Northumberland.

- Louise


Sunday, 16 June 2013

When the high street just won't do....There's always Etsy

Brit Boutique goes shopping to Etsy.....

Not only do I love supporting independent shops, I also love supporting crafts people too. When I purchase anything from Etsy I always look for things made in the United Kingdom first and then do a World Wide search too.

These past few months I have been purchasing accessories for my bedroom. I found this beautiful cushion made by Hilly Horton Home. The cushion is a linen mix with lace detail trim which is professionally made and would have cost double on the high street or in a home interiors shop. In my opinion the cushion is worth more than I paid for it.

I have also purchased a couple of things from Love to Hold. The wash bag and make-up bag are made from Liberty Emily Bowyer fabric in a navy and white colour way. I love natural materials and with these being machine washable they are practical as well as beautiful.


I was so thrilled with Merope's skills that I requested a tote bag made from the same fabric. After some conversations and some money later, this arrived.


The tote bag is the perfect size and so practical for jaunting around. I use the bag organiser by Tintamar (VIP liner) as this helps keep things together. 

I plan on doing more of these posts as I purchase more things from Etsy or Folksy.

The two shops I mentioned can be found here



- Louise

Monday, 10 June 2013

The true price of beauty - A love/hate relationship

In my skincare post I mentioned the fact that I like to use "certified organic skincare products". The reason I purchase skincare with the soil association stamp of approval is because the ingredients in them are not harmful and have no hidden nasties.

You can find the soil association here www.soilassociation.org

As the weather is heating up here in the United Kingdom, and we are exposing our feet in open toed shoes and sandals, we like to start grooming our feet. One thing we like to do is paint our toe nails which I have a love/hate relationship with. The reason it's a love/hate relationship is because it goes against everything I believe in when it comes to organic or natural beauty.

There isn't a completely natural nail polish out there as they still contain a host of chemicals that chemists believe to be harmful. Which is why it is recommend to only use nail polish occasionally and if at all avoid it completely. There are nail brands out there that offer 3 free (formaldehyde, DBP and toulene free) and some even offer 5 free  nail polish (same as 3 free but without camphor and formaldehyde resin) but it would appear that they are still bad for us. A quick search on Google and a whole host of beauty blogs come up with results about this.

So I have decided as of today I am now only allowing myself to look after my hands and feet naturally. No more applying nail polish and no more breathing in the harmful chemicals. I plan on using the money I would normally have used to purchase nail polish and related nail polish things towards products to keep my nails strong, cuticles soft and hands and feet nourished. This way I can have the smoothest feet regardless of season and I will never have to worry about chips or if I have enough remover in the house ever again.

The reason I thought I would dedicate this blog post to my love hate relationship is because I have tried this a couple of times before and I have failed. So I thought if I made it public here it would give me an incentive to carry on with my own beliefs. So I hereby sign this official document Brit Boutique x

The things I will need for my new natural hand and foot care routines are

Hand and Foot products
  • crystal nail file
  • nail buffer
  • cuticle nipper to cut back loose bits of skin down side of nail (not to cut cuticles)
  • hand wash
  • exfoliator
  • nail brush
  • nail clippers 
  • pumice stone
  • oil (either shea butter, almond oil, argan oil or coconut oil)
I am still trying to put together a routine and will upload this when I have figured one out with the products I will use. I am taking before and after pictures to see if my new routines are making a difference. Whether I will post them on here I don't know.

- Louise