Tuesday, March 3, 2015

MOM Elizabeth: Trusting God in the Delay, Part 4

During the month of February, we've learned about Elizabeth and her story of being blessed with twins after trying to conceive for two years.  You can catch up here:

Part 1
Part 2
Part 3 

Today is the first "Momster Monday" of March, and I would typically be introducing a new Momster of the Month.  Instead, due to several unforeseen circumstances, I am going to use today to share more about Elizabeth. 

For our last installment of Elizabeth's interview, we will learn more about her passion for social justice and what she is doing to make lasting change for lives around the world, using fashion and design as a vehicle for poverty alleviation. She has also offered Momster Mash readers s giveaway, so read on to learn more!


Elizabeth has a huge heart and sincere love for people, and has made some very intentional changes in her life in order to bless others. Elizabeth's passion for social justice stems back to the first time she visited a brothel.  You read that correctly.  In 2007, she spent four months volunteering in Bolivia and this is when she truly realized that slavery still exists.
"...I met women and very young girls who were bought and sold for sex and money...I ate lunch with women and transvestites who prostituted. Some were physically forced or coerced, though many found themselves in poverty's grip and no way to feed their families without working the strip."
In 2013, Elizabeth was "dismayed" to realize a completely different type of slavery also still existed, while "bragging about bargains and relishing in my comfortable consumerism for far too long." To further explain, Elizabeth shares why Forever 21 is among the worst places to shop.
"On a grading scale of A (the best) to F (the worst), [Forever 21] consistently received a "D" grade on worker rights, traceability, monitoring, and use of excessive overtime. They don't guarantee their workers a living wage, and they have not taken steps toward responsible purchasing."
Did you know that Forever 21 prints John 3:16 on their bags?
"For God so loved the world, that he gave His one and only Son, 
that whoever believes in Him shall not perish but have eternal life."

I agree with Elizabeth when she says "the last time I checked, the "world" refers to ALL people, from every tribe, nation and tongue, from every economic status, with every job title. The "world" means those living and working in desperate, horrific conditions like Forever 21's cotton growers, cotton pickers, fabric dyers and garment sewers...those exploited by the company's cheap and fast fashion."
If you're like me, and admittedly Elizabeth, you find pleasure in how inexpensive you were able to snag those cute new shoes, You share with your friends the low shopping spree tally from your favorite store. You are quick to blurt out the amazingly low price of the necklace which brings such regular compliments. 

However, Elizabeth urges you to consider this:
"Think about it. If an accessory costs less than $4, someone in the supply chain isn't getting paid appropriately (or at all). Considering Forever 21 has a net income of $135 MILLION, one would hope they would invest a little more money into the humane treatment of their workers all over the world today."
Over the years, the tension Elizabeth faced continued to grow, "...I can NOT keep buying what I've been buying without knowing it was ethically produced." So she took action and changed her buying habits from low-cost Target finds to intentional purchases from fair-trade companies who empower artisans across the globe, pay living wages, source local textiles and give back to the communities from which the goods come.

Enter Noonday Collection!  In February 2013, Elizabeth made the decision to become an Ambassador for Noonday Collection, a company that trains and employs artisans from across the globe to create beautiful hand-crafted jewelry and accessories from locally sourced materials; alpaca from Peru, recycled artillery from wars of conflict in Ethiopia, scraps of paper in Uganda, and up-cycled VHS cassette ribbon in India.  Each artisan is paid a fair, live-able wage according to fair trade standards, work realistic hours, in comfortable and sanitary conditions.

Each piece is on-target with current fashion trends and colors, similar to what you might find at Nordstrom or Anthropologie. Check out some of my favorites:
La Vela Bracelet
Glass beads
~ Guatemala ~
Here I am wearing the Tushabe Layered Necklace
Handcrafted paper beads, seed beads, ethically harvested horn.
~ Uganda ~
Monaco Necklace
Ethically harvested cow bone and brass.
~ India ~

Minted Cowl
Alpaca and wool
~ Peru ~
Isn't it all so lovely?! Elizabeth says that her goal is to "empower you to take action." We have the opportunity every day to caste our vote with the dollars we spend. As the saying goes, "you can't eat an elephant in one bite".  The problem may seem too large an overwhelming, but one by one bite at a time, we CAN make a difference. Here's what you can do to take action today:

1. Purchase from Elizabeth's website.
2. Host a Trunk Show - style your friends, change the world.
3. Become a Noonday Ambassador by contacting Elizabeth via her website.
4. Read more about Elizabeth and follow along on her mission of using fashion and design as a vehicle for poverty alleviation via her blog El-Town.

"Together, we are building a flourishing world where children are cherished, 
women are empowered, people have jobs and we are connected."
- Elizabeth Bricknell -

Elizabeth has graciously offered a $25 Noonday Collection gift card to one Momster Mash reader! Follow the prompts below to enter.  Winner will be announced this Friday, March 6th, 2015.

4 comments:

  1. I had the privilege of meeting Elizabeth in January 2014. She is a gem! I've loved reading her story here!
    LOVE Noonday Collection! Two of my favorite pieces this season are the Metallic Teardrop Earrings and the Waterway Necklace.

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  2. Alexandria NicholsMarch 04, 2015

    I love all the necklaces in the new spring line! Especially the Rachel Necklace!

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  3. The cowl is my favorite! I actually own it!

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  4. I love the Angelica Infinity Scarf! Love!

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I'd love to hear your thoughts!