Ithaca Fair Trade Rug Event
ITHACA, N.Y.(WENY)-- The One World Trade Market is hosting their annual Fair Trade Rug Event at the church of Saint Catherine of Sienna this weekend. The annual fair trade market happens only once a year for one full weekend, and all of the 400 or so rugs brought for sale are completely hand dyed and knotted. The money goes back to the cooperative group who gave the makers of these rugs fair prices for them all up front.
"The predominant amount of the sales goes to the Bunyaad cooperative group that these artists work for and it provides them with a living wage, it gives them money for education, medical care, schooling for their children and of course housing," says Ingrid McWilliams, President of the One World Market.
Fair trade means that there is not an exact system the artisan has to go through to sell the rugs, they have complete control over when their product is done, and how much it will go for.
"It's the artisan who benefits from this program. Artisan directly gets the benefits because artisan sets the price. Their fully paid before the rugs leaves their home so the artisan doesn't have to think well how will i get my money," says Yousad Chaman, Director of the Bunyaad Cooperative.
What is truly unique about the rugs is that they are not only hand made, it is a family tradition which has been passed down through centuries, so each rug is made with complete quality and passion. All of the products that the rugs are made with are local to their communities and even the dyes are products of every day life such as onion skins, orange peels, and other natural occurring products.
"So these rugs are done by individual families, that means they are not cutting any corners for materials, they are not cutting any corners for dyes, they are making these rugs just like the way they have produced for centuries," says Chaman.