Around The World: Circular Seating Styles
April 13, 2018
If you like to shop fair trade and also have that extra boho flair that brought you to Global Groove Life’s website then you probably already have an unique home design theme going on. Cheers to that - good for you!
Circular seating continues to build interest in your space and provides seating options that alter from the norm (always a good thing with the bohemian crowd).
Functional And Fun
Need additional seating? Roll in some balance balls from the office or studio instead of having your guest “pull up a chair.” This is way easier to do than carrying chairs around to move them - and it works especially well if you have multiple areas of the house that are used for socializing with people.
Red Flower of Life Cover
Gone are the days of uncomfortable office chairs. If you work from home or are otherwise spending a lot of time sitting at a table or desk then you should really try sitting on a yoga ball. They’re quite comfortable and you can easily find wheeled bases that keep them more stable beneath you if straight up sitting on a ball sounds like a bit of a challenge.
Here are three of our top reasons why we recommend using a balance ball as your new favorite chair:
1. You’ll experience a new level of comfort while sitting on a balance ball!
Say goodbye to uncomfortable wooden chairs and other unforgiving materials and hello to a flexible, responsive seat. The slight bounce that the ball provides allows you to make constant micro-adjustments instead of stagnating in the same position for hours at a time.
Although sitting in one single position may seem like it would be more comfortable, studies have proven that staying sedentary hour after hour (for example while working, watching TV, or scrolling through the internet) can lead to potentially lethal complications! Sitting on a yoga ball is a simple way to keep your body and life force energy moving.
2. It’s good for you!
We know, we know - we sound like your mother responding to child you when you asked her why you need to eat your vegetables! We’re not trying to dredge up old memories … but just like your mama we see the importance of looking out for your health and wellbeing!
Balancing on a yoga ball strengthens your core muscles. You know, the ones in your stomach, sides, and back that keep you moving around with ease (or not depending on the state of your core). Maintaining a strong core is very important to your overall balance and range of motion. So we’re big fans of anything that can be done to keep this part of the body toned.
3. A new perspective!
You probably know by now how passionate we are GGL are about gaining new perspectives - on everything from style to life. If you are desk-bound for a large part of the day then you could probably benefit from the change of perspective that replacing your desk chair with a balance ball will bring you.
Cobalt Geometric Cover
Changing your point of view can really transform your whole mindset and therefore your entire day! You can funnel your newfound energy and enthusiasm into more productivity and efficiency.
Naturally as a bohemian (i.e. individual with a strong sense of self and personal expression) you’ll want to explore the unique style opportunities that come along with using yoga balls as seating. Global Groove Life has so many options to transform your balance ball from blah to chic.
Plum Geometric Ball Cover
Want to use your ball as an accent piece? Choose a brightly colored or a boldly patterned yoga ball cover. Here are a few of our favorites below.
Tribal Sand Cover
Alternately, you may want to be able to use the balance ball as a chair in multiple rooms and as a workout tool in your studio. In that case you couldchoose a few different covers - or - go for a more neutral tone.
Black Flower of Life Cover
Olive Geometric Cover
We’re sure that you’ll find your perfect groove however you choose to use and decorate your balance balls. Send in photos of how you’re using your yoga ball in your space - we’d love to see it!
Amara Evans is a vibrational healer, collective consciousness-raiser, writer, and devotee of the Goddess. She loves to connect with her global community through writing and speaking about important topics like the environment, spirituality, and fair trade.
Transform Black Friday: Conscious Consumerism
November 24, 2017
Spreading The #LotusLove
September 06, 2017
The lotus flower is beloved by people around the world. We at Global Groove Life love the lotus so much that we’ve included it in the GGL logo! It represents growth and rising above the muck to bloom and express - the same way that fair trade and fair business rise above the dirty, exploitative practices of traditional business to expand into a better way of interacting with the world and our human family. The GGL lotus is overlaid over a map of the world that we love so much. A perfect fit to represent our intention to uplift the planet!
Purification So Sweet
Humanity has long revered the lotus as a floral representation of purification. The plant grows up through the mud and reveals the purity of its beautiful essence as it blooms. It shows us how we, too, can share our essential natures as we continue to purify ourselves and push our way beyond the sticky mud of the world.
No Mud No Lotus
You may have heard this expression shared by Vietnamese Zen Buddhist Monk and world peace advocate Thich Nhat Hanh, “No mud, no lotus.” All humans are born into a world where there is suffering - represented by the mud. And each person incarnated in this world has the potential to become fully enlightened and fully self-aware - represented by a blossoming lotus flower.
This quote reminds us that even our suffering serves us and helps us to feel gratitude for the entire experience of life. In this way the lotus is also a symbol of transcendence. What a great reminder of this powerful ability we have to overcome and rise above.
Global Groove Life is partnering with Global Party People! We’re a global community that supports respectful co-existence through peace, love, music, dance, and community. We operate on the vibration of love and trust and use art and music to make the world a better place. We believe that a smile is the same in every language. Come dance with us and join our Global Community.
Do you want to join our Global Tribe? During the month of September GGL is offering you a FREE #LotusLove decal in the color of your choice! Global Party People is offering a FREE music download, too! Just sign up here to join us on our journey and to receive these free gifts!
The #LotusLove decals are available in an assortment of colors - the chakra colors to be exact. So which color - red, orange, yellow, green, blue, or violet - are you resonating with today? Or what aspect of your life do you want to reinvigorate?
Global Groove Life chose to print the stickers in the chakra colors because often folks are attracted to colors which represent different things that are going on in their lives and/or physical bodies. Learn more about each chakra associated color below.
Choose red to empower and clear your root chakra, muladhara, which will have you feeling secure and grounded. The orange decal will assist you in balancing your sacral chakra, svadhisthana, so you can freely express yourself. Go with the yellow lotus to heal your solar plexus chakra, manipura, to be confident and feel in control with a healthy sense of self esteem.
A green lotus decal will assist you in clearing your heart chakra, anahata, and feeling compassion in loving relationships. Choose the light blue sticker to balance your throat chakra, vishuddha, which will support you in expressing yourself openly and freely. A dark blue lotus will help you with your third eye chakra, ajna, the center of intuition. Choose the purple lotus to clear and balance your crown chakra, sahasrara, so you can have a clear view of the world and your connection with it. Even if you’re not aware of what you’d like to work on just let your intuition guide you to choose whatever color lotus decal you’re drawn to.
Which #LotusLove decal are you most drawn to? Get yours today!
Amara Evans is a vibrational healer, collective consciousness-raiser, and devotee of the Goddess. She loves to connect with her global community through writing about important topics like the environment, spirituality, and fair trade.
The Life of a Burma Silk Yoga Ball Cover
October 07, 2014 1 Comment
Yoga ball covers are starting to become a really popular item here at Global Groove Life. We’ve been making them for a while now, but people are really starting to catch on to how much they can transform a room!
See, we’re big fans of sitting on yoga balls to work. We have them in our home office, and there are a couple around the house that are used for extra seating (when they’re not being used as a yoga tool).
Yoga balls (or balance balls or exercise balls, depending on what you call them) are extremely functional. They are very versatile to use around the home, and they can really improve your body mechanics over time.
There’s just one problem.
They’re so. Damn. Ugly.
And sticky. It’s one of life’s great mysteries how the things end up with that weird tacky feeling all over them, no matter how hard you try to keep them clean.
So when we started creating yoga ball covers, it was really for us. We wanted our yoga balls to look and feel lovely every time you came across one. And as it turns out, lots of other people were in the same boat.
Since we started getting so much interest, we’ve extended our line of Fair Trade yoga ball covers significantly. They range from teen-friendly prints, to whacky patterns, to subtle and subdued - all the way up to our new luxe range.
These new luxe covers are handcrafted from Burma Silk.
We head out to Wararot Kad Luang Market and meet our long-time supplier. We chat as she measures out the hand-spun silk in 2-yard sections. It takes several of these large pieces to create one cover, and there’s a long process ahead before the final product reaches us.
Once we’ve purchased yards and yards of the Burma Silk, we carefully transport them to a village just outside Chiang Mai. We arrive at our tailor’s home and hand over the huge folds of material, which she and her team members will cut by hand into small pieces a few inches in diameter.
Cutting completed, the Burma Silk is loaded into another truck and dispatched to even smaller villages that are even further out of Chiang Mai. There is no industry in these areas, so the arrival of the silk is an event. The tailors hustle around the truck, collecting their portion of the silk to whisk away to their sewing rooms. Ensconced by hundreds of yards of silk, they get to work, twisting each little piece of silk into a bow-shape.
After about two days of work shaping the silk, it’s time for the cover to take shape. The tailors sew up a ball cover, and then begin the long process of attaching each bow to the cover. The silk is delicate, so this process is handled with tender care, and will take the next two days.
Four days after they receive the raw Burma Silk, the tailors have each created one Burma Silk Yoga Ball Cover.
It’s a long, intensive process, and by the time that cover is dispatched back to us, they are due for a well-earned break before tackling the next cover.
However, the cover each tailor has produced is gorgeous. They are the very top of the line in ball covers, and they are quickly snapped up by our style-conscious customers.
Do you have a yoga ball that is ruining the look of a room in your home? We’ve got plenty of new cover options available, all Fair Trade and handcrafted, and they are so varied that there will certainly be good fit for your style and decor. Check them out here!
How Carrying Silk 1500 Miles Changed Our Lives
August 19, 2014
Travel is always such a whirlwind, isn’t it? There’s this manic scramble before you leave, packing, repacking and starting all over again, making sure you’ve got your cables and snacks and clothes and maps and lists and…. it just goes on and on.
But that’s the magic of it all, the unpredictable, unforeseeable beauty of gathering yourselves up and just going. We’ve been doing it a while now, and that is the only constant.
On our most recent trip, hauling ourselves all the way to the UK, and then bustling down into Nepal, we had some time to reflect on the process our materials and products have gone through as we grew.
Here we’d like to share some musings on that growth from a little while ago, when we rebranded from Fair Trade by HOPE to Global Groove Life:
Back in '98, after our first pop-up store, we literally travelled the length of India for interesting products to bring back to our customers in California for the following holiday season. Once we reached southern India, Mysore to be exact, we found ourselves not only high on the scent of sandalwood but intoxicated by the array of fine silks available.
Without a clue what we would do with it, we purchased yards of raw silk in just about every color imaginable.
This silk travelled on our backs via a third-class sleeper car from the southern tip of India back up and through the holy city of Varanasi. It travelled overland through a massive storm and leaky bus for three days from Varanasi to Kathmandu - over 1500 miles in total. And that's where we learned, after such a crazy journey, that Kathmandu was famous for embroidery!
Remember there was no Wifi in those days, Internet in that part of the world existed only in major cities and you could expect to wait up to three hours for your turn on the one computer. So we had no idea what we could expect to find anywhere in our travels.
So there we were with a pack full of silk surrounded on every street corner by the buzz of embroidering, and at Christmas 1998 we offered the most amazing silk cushion covers with intricate and colorful celtic knots that you have ever seen!
And now, in full knowledge of what Kathmandu has to offer, we carried fabric from afar once again. It didn't experience the authentic traveler's rite-of-passage journey as did our first go, but it did travel, albeit by jet...
From Chiang Mai to Bangkok to Delhi to London to Delhi to Kathmandu to Delhi to Bangkok and back to Chiang Mai.
Here in Chiang Mai the beautiful embroidered material is stitched into yoga mat bags, and then released out into the world to keep flowing to where it’s wanted. In keeping with Global Groove tradition, you can not get this in Kathmandu because the fabric doesn't exist there, nor can you get it in Chiang Mai, because this type of hand embroidery doesn't exist here.
It’s still amazing to us, after all these years, that travel and a small spark of inspiration led us to where we are today.
We started out with just a handful of artisans in the beginning, and now there are whole teams working to build this Global Groove Life together and to boost Fair Trade all around the world.
The History of Fair Trade
August 01, 2014
Here at Global Groove Life we’re proud of our Fair Trade certification, and we’re proud to be part of the global Fair Trade movement.
That movement has been riding a groundswell since the late 1940s, when a handful of religious and political groups, morally incensed by the horrors of World War Two, started started developing supply chains for from a small number of developing countries.
The products they started producing were largely sold into local economies - there was not enough awareness or demand at the time for department stores or chains to stock the cross-stitch and jute products.
It was not until the 1960s that Fair Trade really started to evolve into a social force.
The 60s are famous now for their political and social upheaval, and the blooming focus on social responsibility and individual ethics were one positive outcome.
At this time, students and young political players realised that boosting local economies was a much more effective way to help people than the scattershot approach to aid that most Western countries were applying.
In 1968, the UN adopted the popular slogan from the student movement - “Trade, not Aid.” That was the same year that Whole Earth Catalog, a broadsheet in the USA, started connecting producers in developing nations with the retailers and consumers who would start trading directly with them, effectively bypassing the bottlenecks of large corporate buying procedures.
By the time the early 1970s rolled around, dozens of ‘worldshops’ had opened around Europe, with volunteers running the stores to sell goods produced to fair trade standards in the developing world.
The 70s also saw a much greater proportion of individuals getting involved in Fair Trade. With many developing nations excluded from international trade on a political basis, thousands of volunteers took to selling products from their homes, churches and parks to support farmers in places like Angola and Nicaragua. This helped improved the general visibility of the fair trade movement, and exposed thousands more people to the concept of buying responsibly.
The Fair Trade movement faced a crisis point in the early 1980s. Many retailers felt that Fair Trade products often looked dated, and they were having trouble trading off the declining novelty factor. Demand for ethically sourced products plateaued, and a fall in commodity prices meant that the industry had to restructure - and quickly - to maintain any momentum.
Into the 1990s, many of these concerns were addressed, and ethical products became very successful in the Western retail markets.
Handicrafts slowly regained their popularity, maintaining the lion’s share of the Fair Trade industry. The emergence of agricultural products like coffee, tea, rice, nuts, cocoa, dried fruit, sugar and spices was key in the continuing growth of the industry.
A hugely important event in the development of Fair Trade was the introduction of certification. Up until this point, there has been no real regulation on the products being promoted as ethically sourced. In 1988, the first certification board was created in the Netherlands. This independent certification meant that Fair Trade products could be sold far beyond the confines of the little European worldshops.
At this point, Fair Trade sales really started taking off, as products started being stocked in large chains and department stores, removing the serious inconvenience consumers had previously faced in obtaining these products.
It also gave retailers and consumers alike the confidence they had previously been lacking - that they were truly paying for a product that would benefit the producer.
Soon enough, certification organizations had popped up all over the world, and in 1997, Fairtrade Labelling Organizations International (FLO) had standardized the global certification process. FLO now sets the standard all Fair Trade products must meet, how inspections are conducted, how support is provided to producers, as well as harmonizing the message over Fair Trade between participating organizations.
These days, in order to be approved to carry the Fair Trade Certified stamp, the product in question must meet some key criteria:
Crops must be grown and harvested according to FLO standards
The supply chain must be monitored by FLO to guarantee the product’s integrity
The working conditions of the producers must be safe and healthy
Producers must be paid a living wage and not face exploitation
The organization must not engage any child or slave labor
The production process must protect and conserve the local environment
The organization must facilitate social development
These days, the proportion of Fair Trade goods on the market has switched from what it was throughout the 1980s and 1990s. Agricultural products now lead the charge, with a huge variety of goods falling under Fair Trade certification: bananas, mangos and oranges; sugar, tea and coffee; cocoa beans and cocoa; honey, nuts, seeds and oils; rice, quinoa, spices and wine. Handicrafts - such as clothing, jewelry, yoga accessories and homewares - now account for about a third of the ethical goods on offer.
Why GGL Is a Fair Trade Company
July 08, 2014
Meet Pii Nee, Our Yoga Mat Bag Master
June 30, 2014