IslandSpiritShop

Wildcrafted Island Products

Suva, Fiji · 7 Sales

IslandSpiritShop

Wildcrafted Island Products

Suva, Fiji 7 Sales On Etsy since 2015

Announcement   Locally sourced and Fiji island based, handmade purses, floor mats, yoga mats, Ipad cases, bracelets and much more. A guaranteed World Fair Trade Organisation.

Announcement

Last updated on Jun 20, 2018

Locally sourced and Fiji island based, handmade purses, floor mats, yoga mats, Ipad cases, bracelets and much more. A guaranteed World Fair Trade Organisation.

Kirsty Barnby

Contact shop owner

Kirsty Barnby

About

How Passion Inspires Creation.

This little shop of ours has had quite a strange beginning in life! Well, it didn't start in a usual, conventional way that's for sure.

I really believe things come together and work out if you are passionate. If you pump out good, positive energy then that's what will come back to you. Well, that's what happened to me so far...

I am passionate about the Fijian culture, people and environment here. Island life is beautiful in so many ways, I fell in love with it.

In 2011, the UK economy was really weak so I took the bull by the horns and returned to Fiji the country I volunteered in for a year as communications manager for a local NGO.

There I started Island Spirit, a small, independent eco-holiday company. I found myself becoming more and more involved in the lives of the people here. Living on a South Pacific island allows you the chance to slow down, live for the moment and concentrate on what you think is important.

So after four years on Tavenui hosting, organising and facilitating tailored and pre-designed island adventures for amazing people all over the world, a dedicated friend suggested I apply for the World Fair Trade membership. It took eight long months and a very comprehensive application process before we were finally welcomed into the WFTO fold so to speak. We are now the first world fair trade organisation in the world to trade with any Pacific island country! Wow.

The shop idea came from that same amazing friend who thought that selling handmade products made by the islanders we know so well, would both add value to their lives AND the Island Spirit brand. And so we spend our time hand picking what we think are lovely island products for you to see and buy.

The challenges faced by these remote island communities are unbelievable. Despite living in tropical paradise for the majority of the year they endure regular outbreaks of scabes from the damp humidity; obesity from the new packaged foods that are so popular; lack of medical infrastructure means people die of easily treated illnesses too. Poor reading, writing and lack continued education means many women choose to have families early - there is such lack if opportunity for them. Life can be very boring just cooking, washing looking after children and cleaning.

This is where we help. We buy in bulk every three months meaning that the women's groups know what to make and when, they can budget and learn to forecast their cash flow. I have witnessed women coming together as one to weave for Island Spirit, usually it's the men who work as teams. They get really excited and work hard, it's very inspiring. Some think outside the box and suggest new ideas which is clearly quite new to them. One group is a mixture of Indian and Fijians, others are all Fijians.

The photos attached are of the women's group we work with in a small Taveuni based village, they produce the yoga mats. We all had great fun taking the shots, work isn't always serious with us!

Around the web

Shop members

  • Kirsty Barnby

    Owner, Creator

Production partners

  • Island women of Vanua Levu, Fiji.

    Fiji

    Handmade by local Fijian women. We are a World Fair Trade Organisation. All proceeds go to the local artisans.

  • Sunila's Tailors

    Suva, Fiji

    A group of Indo-Fijian tailors who partnered with us so we can sell their products.

Shop policies

Last updated on

Accepted payment methods

  • Accepts Etsy Gift Cards and Etsy Credits