Plowsharing Crafts, Where your purchase makes a difference!
Plowsharing Crafts has provided meaningful income to skilled artisans around the world by marketing their products in the St. Louis area since 1985. We are a ministry of the St. Louis Mennonite Fellowship, one of two Mennonite churches located in the St. Louis area. Plowsharing Crafts is a member of the Fair Trade Federation, and a 501c3 not-for-profit organization. We are largely staffed by volunteers from the community, and we always welcome new friends to join our team.
We began as an outgrowth of a committee of the church, which chose the opening of a store to sell handmade craft items from the third world as a way of doing justice ministry and raising the profile of Mennonites in the metro area. After research and fund-raising, Plowsharing Crafts opened its doors in Maplewood on Manchester Road in 1985, totally run by volunteers. After two years in Maplewood, the decision was made to move to the University City Loop area and to hire a full-time paid manager.
The original store, now at 6271 Delmar has been in the University City Loop since 1987. In 2002, we opened a second store, this one in the Kirkwood community located at 151 W. Jefferson. This site was used for two years, at which time the store moved two doors east to its current location at 137 W. Jefferson. In 2013, we expanded again, to 224 N. Main in Edwardsville, IL and hired an additional manager for our Delmar Loop location. Plowsharing Crafts also sponsors off-site sales at conventions and churches around the area, and we are always looking for more opportunities to connect with groups interested in hosting a sale.
Plowsharing Crafts is in partnership with Ten Thousand Villages, the oldest and largest Fair Trade organization in North America. A large percentage of our inventory comes from Ten Thousand Villages which works with over 60,000 artisans in 30 different countries and has a network of over 100 stores in the US. We also work with approximately 30 other Fair Trade vendors, including SERRV, Global Crafts, UPAVIM, Mountcastle International, Venus Imports, and Equal Exchange, with products from an additional 15 countries. Each of our vendors is committed to Fair Trade and conforms to the principles as laid out on our Fair Trade page.
Many of the products are made with sustainable and recycled materials.
Our food products are grown all over the world by small farmers using sustainable methods.
Two of our product lines support projects in the United States: Women’s Bean Project, Denver, CO and Lucinda Pins for Lydia’s House, St. Louis, MO.