Thursday, November 4, 2021

November is for Thanks. Our Small Fair Trade Business Thanks You.

And like that, it's November. And November is for thanks. It's been a tough time for so many small fair trade businesses like ours. The trials and tribulations presented by Covid did not fall lightly on Dunitz & Company. And I know it's been a tough go for so many others. I thought this was the perfect time to prove the glass is always half full, not half empty. In no particular order, and on behalf of Dunitz & Company, here is a bunch of thanks. [And if you want to know why this pic to the right is so special, you'll need to read to the end!]



We're thankful for our customers, many who keep coming back time and time again. Clearly they wouldn't be reordering if our fair trade jewelry didn't sell. We also know there are so many choices out there. And we're thankful they do keep coming back. When brick & mortar stores began opening up again earlier this year, we were overjoyed that so many of our existing customers restocked with our designs. (This collage was made in 2015. It certain shows how much we appreciate you all!.)


We're thankful for our clients who have collaborated with us to create custom designs for their stores. There are too many to name. We did write a blog post not too long ago, where we singled out many projects. Click to check it out here. You might get some good ideas for your store! The earrings featured to the right are offered by ZeeBee Market in Saint Louis.





We're thankful for our artisan colleagues in Guatemala who continue to produce high quality jewelry that our customers want. Even with Covid, we've managed to keep things going and people working. (You can see I put together this collage before I stopped coloring my hair.) These are some of the folks I work with in Guatemala. We make a difference for them. They make a difference for us.




We're thankful for the Small Business Administration and the loans and in some cases forgiveness they provided for some of that loan money during Covid times. The extra slush has helped Dunitz & Company as we say "keep our head above water."






We're thankful for our supportive fair trade colleagues. There are those that share ideas instead of hiding them. Ones that give you shout-outs from time to time, just because. This year we've collaborated on several projects with HoonArts, Sevya and Baskets of Africa. Our most recent collaboration was a joint gift to Fair Trade Federation for their virtual auction fundraiser.




We're thankful for our newest company mascot that brings love and humor to our office daily. We're speaking of Bella the weimaraner. She joined us in March from the Los Angeles Shelter.






We're thankful for our often messy office, which allows us to get our work done in a safe place.








We're thankful for our office landlord who reduced our monthly rent during these crazy times.







We're thankful for our neighbors who pawn off their used boxes and packing materials on us. We love not spending money on packing materials when we don't have to. And we also like knowing by recycling, we are saving our planet just a little bit. Our neighbors run a small vegan grocery.





We're thankful for the support organizations we're part of that continue to educate the masses about the merits of fair trade. Fair Trade Federation, Fair Trade Los Angeles, Green America.




We're thankful for our museum store clients and our membership at Museum Store Association. (My love of fine art, my art history studies and my new found love as a portrait artist feed my love of working with museum stores even more.)



We're thankful for the new "wholesale rep" websites (in the absence of trade shows,) that have sprung up and grown in recent times. FAIRE and ABOUND have allowed us to find and connect with new retail stores. This new way of connecting with retailers may mean we won't have to travel to trade shows as they now become available again.


We're thankful that some of our customers are now selling Dunitz & Company jewelry online. We always knew they'd have success. I think the downtime from Covid allowed many of our clients to grease up their websites. Did you know we have a store locator function on our websites? If we don't have a retailer in any given area, these websites will pop up as options to purchase our designs. [Note: To be listed on our store locator, you need to have purchased from us within 6 months.]


We're thankful for Etsy. Our sales on Etsy wouldn't support us. However, the retail business we've garnered during Covid lock down on this site has allowed us to cover some of those bills that never stopped coming in. If you have an Etsy shop and you're looking for expert help on how to boost your sales, we highly recommend Dave DeNard. Watch his YouTube videos and consider some of his virtual classes. Thank you, Dave.





We're thankful that more buyers are finding our retail site we fondly call Shop Dunitz. Seriously, we don't drive that much traffic to our retail site. And when we do, it makes us dance a little happy dance.



We're thankful for the colleagues and friends that allowed us to interview them during these crazy Covid times for our blog. It's hard to believe just how long this pandemic has been going on. It was way back in June 2020 that I interviewed Lindsay Woodruff of Pachamama Market. In February 2021 I featured designers that work in Guatemala including Anne Kelly (Mayan Hands), Caryn Maxim and Jennifer Webster (Mayamam Weavers) and Alison Havens (Yabal.) Yes, I shared my own stories too. In June 2021, I interviewed Elisha Chan, Executive Director of Fair Trade LA. Please check out these posts. Everyone had something worthwhile to say. If you think I should interview you, let me know know.

We're thankful for our fans and followers on Facebook and Instagram. We don't always know if you're watching.We definitely appreciate your likes and comments. Keep them coming. And post pics wearing your jewelry. We love being featured in Stories. We do have a few super fans. So to all of you, thank you.


Did I say November is for thank yous? I'm sure Dunitz & Company owes a bunch more thanks to a bunch more people than what I've shared above. In any case this is definitely a good start. These definitely have been tough times. And, I'm thankful for all the good I've shared and encountered during them. Stay well my friends and Thank You! 

The morning after completing this post, I was driving to meet a friend for breakfast. The car in front had the perfect license plate. It was as if the universe was speaking back at me. The light changed. I got stuck behind the red light as the perfect plate sped ahead. Phew, I was catching up again. And then a car scooted in front of me. Needless to say I was disappointed I didn't capture a photo. A bit later down the road, I was caught by another light. And there in the left turn lane was the car, with the perfect plate. Snap. Snap. It gets better. The reason I sometimes snap plates is because my niece posts a lot of "good ones" on her Instagram. You know, It's a way to connect with her. I didn't realize until I was actually texting her a pic of this plate later in the day, that the car ended up being under the sign "Rocco's." And then I knew the universe was also speaking to her. Rocco was her much beloved pit pull who passed away very recently. He was sending Thank yous from heaven. -ND