Fair Treasure Review January 2013

Fair Treasure is a subscription service that sends out 2-3 items from fair trade makers throughout the world. I reviewed this box in December as well, and it seems most of the items are usually from India. Fair Treasure kindly sent me this box to review.

January's box had two items in it. First, I received this very pretty hand-painted cup.
Hand-Painted Cup

This cup is very pretty. I looked up the company and they have some very pretty tiffin boxes for sale as well. However, I am not sure if I can actually use it as a cup because it came with a very strong smell of incense. You can only hand wash it (no dishwasher), and even after I hand-washed it with hot water and soap, it still smelled very strongly. I put some hot coffee into it and the coffee tasted like incense. So I rinsed it again and set it off to the side to see if airing it out some will help. If I can't use it, I will be sad, but I can probably still work it into my decor somewhere. 

Last month's shipment from Fair Treasure also smelled strongly of incense, but I thought it might be because of the fabric ornaments that were included. I am not sure if the incense smell is coming from the factories where these items are made, or from the Fair Treasure place where they are packaged, but it's kind of an issue for me since I don't care for the smell of incense. 

 Second was a pretty pair of beaded earrings. 

Beaded Earrings
There is a card that explains where each of these comes from, and these earrings came from TARA Project (World Finds). The card explains the story of a young woman who quit school at age 11 to work because her father died and her family had to support themselves. She started working with TARA Project at age 18 and apparently has better pay and benefits than before, when her family worked for contractors that did not always pay them. This type of story is typical to the cards included in Fair Treasure.  I really like these earrings and will definitely wear them many times.

I'm not sure if the value is there for this month's box. I looked up the company that makes the hand-painted mug, and they are being sold for 7.95 GBP (about $13 USD). The box costs $35 a month, so to come out even, the earrings would need to be worth $22. But I checked TARA Projects earrings online and at a variety of different sellers, they seem to be sold for about $14-18. So I guess if you count shipping, it comes out just about even, but I would feel better about it if there was another small item included. 

I will say, though - there are two main reasons for getting subscription boxes, and only one of them is getting a good deal on a themed-out pack of goodies. The other is to discover new items and makers, and so far the Fair Treasure box has done that for me. 

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