SHOP FOR GOOD: Skirball’s Pop-Up Helps Empower Women

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Last week, with plenty of time to get into the spirit of giving, a “Holiday Pop-Up” opened shop in Audrey’s Museum Store at the Skirball Cultural Center, as part of the current Women Hold Up Half the Sky exhibit. The pop up will offer a selection of handmade crafts by women’s co-ops and female artisans from developing countries through December 31st.  Proceeds from sales of these items will go to more than seventy-five organizations that promote gender equality around the globe.

These stylish handcrafted items include baskets, jewelry, handbags, hats, gloves, scarves and more. Can’t make it to the museum? You can purchase items online here. Photos of my faves above (hint, hint Santa): Charcoal Messenger Bag from the JADE Tribe, Laos, $170; Chunky Knit Scarf, $42, and Diamond Beret, $62,  from Emilime, Peru.

The exhibit, inspired by the book Half the Sky: Turning Oppression into Opportunity for Women Worldwide by Pulitzer Prize– winning journalists Nicholas D. Kristof and Sheryl WuDunn, addresses the worldwide oppression of women and girls through photos, visual art, and sound installations. Through these mediums women tell their stories of overcoming gender-based abuse like sex trafficking (Did you know Los Angeles is one of the top entry points in the U.S.?), sex slavery and domestic violence to discover economic freedom through education and self-determination.

In addition to the pop up shop sales, the Skirball has also teamed up with joinFITE (Financial Independence through Entrepreneurship, a program powered by Kiva.org), Dermalogica and the DNA Foundation to enable museum visitors to give a $1 loan to a female entrepreneur of their choice through the use of gallery-stationed computers.

The multi-faceted and interactive exhibit runs through March 11, 2012 at the Skirball (skirball.org) but visitors can continue to affect change in women’s lives long after, click halftheskymovement.org for more information.