Momentum, the quaint little shop on the east side of the Pearl Street Mall, is more than a place to buy bright, interesting, idealistic décor for the home or a gift. It’s a place that knows the creativity and persistence it takes to produce high quality goods, and values those that construct the products sold in the store.M
Of course they are proud of what they sell, but the real pride comes from their mission. Momentum only sells products that they get through fair trade. Fair trade is a mode of business where the person who makes the product a fair price in return for the work put into the finished product. It secures that people living in poverty get paid what they deserve, provide for the ethical treatment of workers and farmers, and promote environmentally sustainable practices.
“The purpose of Momentum was to bring everyday products to people that are fairly traded,” manager Chelsea Cook said. “We wanted them to be products for socially minded people. Also, for people to learn about fair trade, and that they could get everyday food products, or jewelry or anything really through fair trade. That was the whole mission.”
Momentum has been imbedded on the east side of Pearl Street for eight years. Although owners have changed, the store is still sticking by the original mission. The mission is admirable, but it’s the products that stand out. Walking into the store, customers are welcomed by a display of colorful pillows with different animals printed on the front. It’s only one of many displays strewn through the store. There are bags packed away in cupboards, pots and pans on a small table towards the back and handmade animated clocks lining the back walls. That’s only a portion of what they have to offer.
Another stand out for the store is the constantly evolving merchandise. The store is always looking for more fair trade items to integrate into the store. It keeps regular costumers coming back. But the staples are the biggest draws.
“Our biggest seller is the elephant dung paper,” Cook said. “It stems from this beautiful story about people killing elephants for trampling their lands, but some people showed them how to make paper out of their dung to make money. For whatever reason people love to write on elephant dung.”
If the poo paper didn’t sell you, we’re not sure what would.