Who are we? In case you missed out on our Spring, 2021 introduction and our very first Roots Revival Box launch, here’s a recapture of the creative talents behind our collective.
RISE UP: THE ROOTS COLLABORATIVE
A WOMEN’S COLLECTIVE
Curated around the central theme of eco-consciousness, sustainability and women-based small business, each of the businesses and products in our Roots Collaborative are carefully chosen because they, in some way, bring into focus the question of how things that we use are made and where they’re from sourced from, and raise awareness of the importance of conscious consumerism and ethical consumption. The concepts highlight our fragile ecosystems (both natural and social). The physical retail box formed around the idea of collectively working to enhance the relationships and conscientious business models that need our support right now more than ever.
I think all of us have a better and truer understanding of how important the work we do collectively really is, now more than ever. Borderland has always been a model I’ve admired, ever since Jen Brazill pitched shop in the empty studio space at Redfish that I, coincidentally, now call my own. Jen’s drive to promote sustainability as a “this is just the way it should be done and that’s that” is a concept that captured me instantly. That’s why when the opportunity came to work together to grow last Christmas’ little Ruminant Love Box, affectionately known as “The Goat Box,” into something larger that could truly be of value, I was hooked. We both grabbed on and rode the wave.
We worked over the winter to bring The Spring 2021 Collaborative Box: Rise Up: The Roots Revival project to fruition, and it was a source of joy and connection. While I can’t speak for Jen, it kept me rooted to something hopeful and full of light through what was a very dark and difficult winter season. Forming relationships with the other women involved in this project as we worked to bring everyone together was a truly uplifting experience, and only validated (for me, anyway) how important the messaging behind this project really is.
Composed of products produced exclusively by small, local, female-driven businesses, we chose to launch our Spring Box on Earth Day to help drive home the message that our small choices matter to Mother Earth.
We launched our current installment, the Fall “Drawn In” Box, this past week at Borderland, where the Roots Collaborative was on hand to share in community. What an amazing day!
Our Roots Revival Box included earth-friendly products such as fresh local lavender plants from Wild Blossom Hollow, organic goats’ milk soap from Alpine Made, local honey, beeswax candles from Hahn’s Honeybee Haven, and a collection of seeds and pollinators from Masterson’s Garden. Local artists like myself and Jenny Licata included fine art that features subjects or processes that highlight the natural world and our consumption of it. The central focus of the spring box was regrowth and pollinator awareness.
Our Fall Box turns the focus towards individual self-care and as we draw in for fall and start turning our own focus inwards. What ways are the products we choose to invest in for self-care or beauty supportive to the environment, and how can we direct our dollars away from larger mainstream products to smaller models, made by women right here in our communities, gathering flowers, distilling at home while managing child care, thoughtfully engaging in the act of making without petroleum based or chemically based agents? What would that look like?
Individual acts, when taken up collectively, have an impact that go beyond just the benefit to ourselves.
Our Fall box includes Organic Hand Poured candles made by a small batch maker here in Buffalo, who mixes her own scents using essential oils and botanicals. She created a scent just for me using Provence Lavender and local harvested lavender buds. It includes a selection of natural Gua Sha stones and a bottle of hand distilled lymphatic health body oil, made from hand harvested herbs selected for their role in supporting lymph health, made by a woman in Hamburg. A loofa dry brush exfoliator is my own contribution this time, for use with the oil, made from single flock origin domestic wool, and utterly compostable. Alpine Made is back with her Lovely Lady bar, and Let’s Goat is again contributing a H.E.R.D. sponsorship to assit in re-outiftting the herd after their devastating fire earlier this month. If you don’t know about this, I’d encourage you to check out Jen’s feed here. Every box purchase counts as direct support to her and our four legged friends. And our friends at Borderland are contributing a piece of Borderland merch. A full listing of the contributions to the box can be found in the listing on our store.
The box is available as a pre-order now until October 25 for pick-up on November 7 out of our building on Elm Street in East Aurora. Inquiries for special orders for Christmas gifting can be made by sending an email through the website. Each one of the products in this box are a perfect way to gift conscientiously this year, either collectively or singly. Amazon’s going to be fine; our small maker and artist communities need our support.
Ten percent of the proceeds from sales of our Roots Boxes this year will be donated to Buffalo Niagara Waterkeepers, to help support the work they do to preserve and protect our local water tables, a critical piece of environmental work right here in WNY.
In addition to the obvious purchase, the larger messaging of this project will continue, involving each participant, with highlights designed to raise conversations and awareness about the real results that their work accomplishes, and how those who are on the consumer side of this relationship can share, and take positive steps to bring that work into their own communities. Those interested in participating can send an inquiry through the contact form.
This is not just a box. It is a movement by a group of very driven and dedicated women.
We have so much work to do, and compassionate, conscious small business models like these are the future. I’m so in love with everything about this project, and the response we’ve gotten so far from this project has been so validating – seeing that so many care about this work has been revitalizing for us as well. So, Thank you…from the bottom of our wild little hearts, for supporting this, either with a purchase or sharing on platforms that help promote awareness.
Please consider purchasing a box to help support the goals of the project and subscribe to the email list to keep abreast of new developments in the project.
You can also follow along on social media at The Roots Collaborative.
Thank you for being a part of this! Rise Up, and Give Green a Chance.