As the shopping season approaches, we begin our hunt for meaningful gifts. If you are looking for beautiful, unique gifts that are handmade, sustainable and support women around the world, look no further than Nina Nest.
Ten years ago, Aidah Wanjiku emigrated to the United States from Kenya. She and her husband are raising their three children in Massachusetts and bringing a piece of their home to the States. Her daughter Nina is the inspiration behind the name Nina Nest. Aidah started Nina Nest as a way to reconnect her young daughter with a part of her culture and heritage.
Nina Nest focuses on bringing quality, ethically-made gifts to the marketplace, handmade by women artisans from marginalized communities. I visited with Aidah in her home and instantly fell in love with the colorful hand woven baskets. While I have been fortunate enough to visit Africa, I couldn’t fit these larger items in my suitcase so was not able to bring them home. I was so happy to finally purchase them.
“Our mission here at Nina Nest is to empower women artisans from Africa, who often have to support their families and educate their children through their hand-weaving and soap-stone carving skills. Having grown up in this society and environment myself, I understand too well how poverty in these under-served communities impacts families. We focus on bringing quality, ethically made goods to the marketplace, and by doing business with these artisans, we help to support and grow the economy in these villages.”
The small Bolga baskets make a perfect gift for children. Lizzie carries all her little treasures around the house with it. They also make great Easter baskets.
There were baskets that I loved, but wasn’t really sure how to use them in my home. Aidah was so good at demonstrating different uses for the baskets. I would have never thought to use them as a planter cover or to hold medicine but once she showed me a few examples, the ideas were endless. The neutral colors and natural grasses used could fit into any home decor.
Any of the baskets would make a perfect gift basket for a baby or bridal shower. They look so pretty when they are packed up and then the receiver has a beautiful basket in the end.
Nina Nest sells so much more than just baskets. There were salad servers, condiment bowls, cheese boards and serving bowls. I love that her gifts are unique and beautiful but also very practical and can be used in day to day life.
The gifts and home decor at Nina Nest are high quality items that are ethical and sustainable. By purchasing from her, you won’t only walk away with beautiful things, but you will be helping marginalized communities generate much needed income and by doing so, helping their families to thrive. It is a win-win for everyone. To purchase, visit her Etsy store by clicking here.