Introducing: Roozt & Brika

If you’re a regular reader of this blog you know that Robyn and I are big fans of the e-commerce website, Etsy, the handmade/vintage equivalent of the better known Ebay. Recent Etsy purchases for us include wedding invitations and a vintage bridesmaid dress but have historically included jewelry (LOTS of jewelry), home decor items, art pieces, and custom designed gifts.

Although I will be faithful to Etsy until my dying days, two similar new sites have recently popped up that have my attention.  The first, Roozt, is a platform for socially conscious consumers and mission-oriented brands.  The second, Brika, is a Toronto based online shopping destination offering a carefully curated selection (rather than an open marketplace) of handmade goods by primarily female artisans.  Both sites are beautifully designed, easy to navigate, and are full of inspiring stories and handmade treasures.

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In the words of founder Brent Freeman, Roozt is about “giving sexy back to giving back.” The site showcases cutting edge brands (primarily fashion and accessory lines) whose production and/or sale makes a positive contribution (or avoids a negative impact) on our earth and/or the people who live here.  An added bonus?  For every member who joins the site, Roozt donates a meal to an American in need.  It is free to sign up and members collect “Changemaker” points and credits that can be used towards future purchases.  I’m loving the “Buy One, Give One” section, that functions on the TOMS model: for every featured item you purchase, one is donated to a person in need.  Bonus points for the unique yoga gear and selection of natural beauty products.
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Unlike the fashion focused Roozt, Brika features a wide array of gifts and decor as well as accessories.  Started by two incredibly bright and talented young women, the site highlights and honours its Makers, sharing their stories to help connect purchasers to products and to inspire future makers. I’m particularly loving the Made in Canada category and the curated gift boxes, but I’d be thrilled to be gifted almost anything featured on the site.  Lucky Torontonian’s can check out Brika in person at the newly opened pop-up shop at the Bay, Queen street.  Open now through the holidays.

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