Swap til you drop! December’s monthly challenge

6th December 2012 by

Laura and Gavin have both been to Trade School in the last month – a really interesting idea through which you can sign up for an hour’s tuition, workshopping or general learning in anything from ‘Clowning and dance’ to ‘Growing food in the city’ or ‘Accounts for non-accountants’.

The twist? You don’t pay a fee, you barter with the tutor, who provides a list of things they would accept in return for giving the class – it could be a loaf of bread, advice on decluttering, a surprise or, well, anything.

Inspired by this lovely idea – particularly in this season of wild-eyed hyperconsumerism, our challenge to you this month is to find out how the ‘gift economy’ – barter-based or generosity-fuelled moneyless means of exchange – is emerging in your area. Is there more than just the (admittedly wonderful) Freecycle? What exciting experiments near you are hacking the economic system? We’d love to hear about what you find, so do let us know!

And if you’re disappointed by a dearth of moneyless innovations in your area – why not start your own Trade School?

You buy it you draw it

8th June 2010 by

This month we’re challenging you to draw everything that you buy. “Have you gone absolutely KE-RAY-ZEE over there at Otesha?” I hear you cry. Well, maybe.

Why? Because we want to get creative, we want to think before we buy and we want to make an artistic comment on our consumer-based society (call us high-minded).

We are taking our inspiration from the uber Kate Bingaman-Burt, author of Handmade Nation and creator of blog Obsessive Consumption – What Did You Buy Today? She has been documenting her purchases since 2002 and even drew all her credit card statements from 2004 until she became debt-free in February 2010. Blimey. Read the rest of this entry »

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