Born in a canoe.

December 13th, 2012

A $100 giveaway from Novica, a fair trade artisan market

Ceramic Nativity scene, “Born in a Canoe” by Alberto Aparicio Canchari

Maybe Novica didn’t have me at hello when I first opened their email last week, but they had me at “fair trade,” “artisan,”  and “micro-finance.”

Also, at “Elizabeth Gilbert is our BFF.” Okay, they didn’t say that, but I found it out later.

“We would like to send you a $150 gift certificate,” they suggested. “Perhaps you would like to split that amount into two $75 gift certificates to use one as a giveaway.”

“Ha!” I wrote back, “I don’t get dressed for less than $1000.”

Nice try, they said. You’re a blogger. You don’t have to get dressed.

They had me there. Still, I didn’t want to seem easy.

“How about $50 for me, and $100 for one of my readers?”

It seemed like the thing to do at the time, but after spending a couple of hours window shopping the site, I’m thinking maybe we should have split it $145 for me, $5 for you. Because this stuff is really beautiful, and so is the mission behind it.

I’m going to make this as easy as possible for you, so just leave a comment to enter the giveaway, but I hope you’ll check out the Pinterest-like curation feature that invites you to be the window dresser for artisans all over the world.

I’m not even very Pinterest-y, and I created a gallery of gorgeous collections, mainly revolving around my rich-hippie-in-Goa fantasies. But then I wondered if they had any Nativity sets, and oh, my.

I love how people around the world embed the Nativity story into their own culture.


I guess we kind of do the same thing here at home.


Maybe in a canoe, the Holy Family will be safely out of reach of Vikings and the Knights Templar.

If you’d like some more ideas about where to spend your gift card, Novica has these suggestions:

Womens Shawls from India 
Black Scarves
Womens Accessories from Thailand
Mens Crew Neck Sweaters
Silver Wristband Bracelets
Turquoise Chandelier Earrings
Winner will be drawn randomly, from commenters to this post, at noon CST, Monday, December 17. Good luck!

UPDATE: Congratulations to lucky commenter #25, Amy!

34 Responses to “Born in a canoe.”

  1. Anna Barker says:

    Sadly, I had to retire our Nativity after last Christmas because someone dropped Joseph and broke his fingers. It looked like he was flying the bird. Maybe this is a sign? And I just saw a shooting star!

  2. Elizabeth Connery says:

    I like the carved wood nativity…pretty!

  3. Stephanie says:

    Hey! 😉

  4. I love their jewelry selections.

  5. Joanna says:

    Nativity in a canoe. Brilliant!

  6. Olivia says:

    I could spend forever browsing through all the beautiful things at Novica. 🙂

  7. Gini Freemyer says:


  8. Lee Cockrum says:

    You make me laugh so hard sometimes: “Maybe in a canoe, the Holy Family will be safely out of reach of Vikings and the Knights Templar.” I just love the way you look at things!

  9. Cid says:

    Glad your Christmas scenes look like mine – traditional with a strong Lego influence and as a fellow Canadian “Born in a Canoe” would be perfect.

  10. Martha says:

    So many beautiful things!

  11. Tina says:

    I LOVE THAT SITE! I got my sister’s Christmas gift there, and made myself step away before I got too deep into looking for myself! 🙂 Off to make a wish list for ME! (And yea, if I won the card, it’d totally be for me. I also love nativity sets from around the world. So far my collection includes Kenya and Spain, and I’d love to add more.)

  12. My nativity scene collection is beginning this year!

  13. Asha says:

    Love! I’ll carry your luggage in Goa if the position’s open

  14. erniebufflo says:

    I needed the name of this place when I was shopping for a nativity! The only recs I got were 10,000 Villages and SERRV, but I am *always* happy to have another great place to shop fair trade.

  15. Ellen says:

    I love that Peruvian one! I need it for my office.

  16. Susan says:

    Beautiful nativity sets!

  17. joan says:

    Ha Your boys make me laugh.
    My sister collects Nativity sets and she would love these. I browsed through too and oh my, the area rugs are beautiful. The turquoise earrings are stunning. I will definitely bookmark this site.

  18. Very lovely and unique Nativities.

  19. sara l says:

    I love Novica – such a great place for gifts!

  20. Cindy Bemis says:

    Lovely. Just lovely.

  21. Shari says:

    Beautiful! I love nativity scenes. I bought a very simple set made of bare wood & twigs this year to go along with my Willow Tree nativity set. I’m keeping an eye out for other simple, rustic sets.

  22. Kelly D says:

    I love the hand crafted jewelry at Novica. Thank you!

  23. manda kay says:

    Great giveaway!

  24. Amy says:

    How lovely! And your post about the empty creche touched my heart. Let’s all be counted amongst the helpers.

  25. Dang it. I was counting on using the “I don’t get dressed” line in my next pitch. NOW what am I going to do?

  26. Meg says:

    Even though I’m not all that religious, I love nativity scenes. These are fantastic!

  27. Susan says:

    I would love this! Thanks for posting.

  28. Laurie says:

    These are really, really cool. I’ve been stressing about what to get my sister and brother-in-law on my tight budget, because they are champion gift-givers and I love them. They would love so many things from this site. (And thanks for pointing it out for when I have a little bit of extra cash again.)

  29. Jennifer says:

    I’m lost in their selection of gorgeous rings… Oh, my.

  30. Nativity, canoes, and vikings…sounds like my life with boys.
    Written while in my pajamas.

  31. andrea wills says:


  32. Beautiful things with such great meaning and purpose. Thanks for offering this up, Kyran!

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