If eco-friendly home design mecca GOODEARTH isn’t on your radar yet, there’s probably good reason: It’s located in India. But with plans to launch an online store by fall, we thought we’d give you the scoop on their new baby and kids line, GOODEARTH gumdrops, which combines playful, colorful, contemporary Indian aesthetics with carefully selected eco-friendly fabrics and materials. GOODEARTH gumdrops covers all the traditional baby and kid territories: toys, bedding, clothes, and bath accessories, all with an eclectic, chic vibe that speaks of gumdrops’ South Asian roots. There’s a lot to love in the line: button-down, organic cotton shirts printed with parrots and elephants, super absorbent organic bamboo bath towels, and sweet patchwork stuffed animals like hippos and giraffes. We fell head over heels for the magical indoor tents that create a kids’ hideaway within your own home. Read on to learn more about the sustainable line from our interview with GOODEARTH’s director Simran Lal.
Continuing GOODEARTH’s mission of being socially responsible, a portion of gumdrops sales will go to the GOODEARTH Foundation, which sets up schools in poverty-stricken areas in rural India. So far, the Foundation’s efforts have aided in providing free education to more than 4,000 children.
For those of you who can’t wait for the official website to go live, you can always email [email protected] with what you are looking for: linens, girls clothes, etc, and the experienced staff at GOODEARTH will send photo options as well as coordinate payment and delivery. Read on for our Q&A with the gumdrops creator.
Q&A with gumdrops Creator and GOODEARTH Director Simran Lal
Q: Can you tell us a little bit about the store and its environmental commitments?
A: GOODEARTH, as the name implies, is an Indian design house and a retail company based on values of sustainability. Sustaining tradition and the ecology is a core value. Encouraging quality craftsmanship and the revival of lost Indian traditions that are beneficial to the environment and to society are what we constantly work towards.
Q: Buying eco-friendly and organic products has become much more mainstream in the US in the past few years. Can you comment on the situation in India?
A: India has always had a very strong tradition of recycling, of minimizing waste, and of revering nature. Unfortunately, over time these values have given way to the all-pervasive consumerism that is now prevalent around the world. I find that it is the young parents now who are more concerned about the environment – what we are leaving behind for our children and what we are feeding our children. Organic products are not so easily available in India yet, but there are signs that people are interested, and once the demand is there, the products will arrive. As a young mom, I was very aware of the gap in organic, responsible, environmentally-conscious products and decided to launch GOODEARTH gumdrops with that as the core philosophy. Our clothes are all organic cotton, we have beautiful bamboo towels, and I am planning to work more and more with bamboo and other environmentally-friendly materials.
Q: Can you tell us about the gumdrops design process-the dyes that you use, how materials are sourced and whether they are fair-trade?
A: We use ONLY azo-free dyes, which are eco-friendly. Wherever possible we use natural dyes, and we work with organizations that are making the process more environmentally friendly. We mostly source our materials through organizations working with rural workers, and we work with many non-profit organizations on the assumption that the materials are fairly traded.
Q: We love the use of traditional Indian elements in the line. Could you share any of the stories and inspirations with our readers?
A: India has been a big inspiration for us at GOODEARTH and certainly it carries on in gumdrops. One of our collections is called “Miya Mithoo”, which loosely translates as “Mr. Parrot”. “Mr. Parrot” was a character that I loved from my childhood days when the story of “Miya Mithoo” was read to me. We see parrots everywhere in India , and my kids love them. We thought it would be a good way for us to re-tell the story of the much loved bird to the younger generations through our products. We have just launched GOODEARTH gumdrops, and there is a lot more to do and work towards – we are taking lots of inspiration from Indian fables, mythological characters, storybook characters. We will continue working towards being more and more environmentally conscious over time as we develop products. We are pushing the boundaries as we go along.