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Our Choices, Our Path, Our Future

Our Choices, Our Path, Our Future

Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world; indeed, it's the only thing that ever has.  

Margaret Mead

Those of us who already subscribe to a plant-based lifestyle know the feeling of stepping foot in a grocery store and making a beeline to that familiar section with the animal-free products. There is obviously large and growing demand for vegan products. New ones appear on the shelves on a seemingly daily basis. At the same time, I often find many of our favorite foods sold out, a clear sign that supply is outstripping demand. I wish that supermarkets would see the light and allocate more space for the “meat alternatives” and “non-dairy” and “egg substitutes” and suchlike.

Of course, we also shop in other sections of the grocery store for common products like bread, cereal, baking mixes and sweets. We read the labels carefully to make sure the ingredients don’t include dairy and/or eggs. Even wine and beer, it turns out, need to be checked. It would be nice to someday walk into a major supermarket (as opposed to small neighborhood specialty store) where everything on the shelves was free of animal products. It would be nice if we didn’t need to read labels and screen for which products can go into the cart.

When it comes to shopping for clothes, furnishings and virtually any household item, the experience is similar. We may not need to go through the process as often because, after all, no one buys nice carpets for the living room or high-end bean bags for that fast-growing tween on a daily basis. But we still would want to check the materials used in the manufacturing process to make sure that there is no leather, wool, silk, feather fill, gelatin glue, etc.

That is why we decided to launch Warm Fuzzies Place as a shopping destination for home decor that celebrates the best in comfort and design while being 100% free of animal products. At Warm Fuzzies Place, no one has to research manufacturing processes or filter “by material” to avoid merchandise that may, in fact, have been someone else’s skin or coat.

Not all our customers are dedicated to a plant-based lifestyle. We don’t expect them to be. Becoming vegan can be journey. Honestly, it took me some time to get here. I am envious of my children, who made the switch at an early age. They will not have to look back on their lives with a feeling of regret for their actions towards other sentient beings. Most of us are not so fortunate, even though we may have always considered ourselves to be good, sensitive, and sensible people. I have friends who espouse the mantra “live and let live”. Yet they continue to buy products that cause animal suffering and death, not to mention health risks and environmental pollution. Sometimes habits are needs, especially if they are deeply ingrained in society.

It is perfectly understandable that people wish for their own lives to be as comfortable as possible. We want to surround ourselves with lovely and cozy possessions -- warm blankets, plush pillows, soft carpets, chairs we can sink in. These have often been made of animal products. Today, however, modern synthetic materials as well as age-old natural materials allow you to have all those luxuries without being part of a system that inflicts unimaginable cruelty on billions of animals.

The truth of the matter is that faux fur and shag rugs are more durable, softer and easier to clean than animal-based sources, not to mention that they come in a broad range of colors and sizes. Natural fiber jute, sisal and seagrass rugs are chic, timeless and look equally great in the urban flat or traditional country house. Materials made from recycled plastic bottles are used to create amazingly soft rugs that are both beautiful and durable enough to be used indoors and outdoors.

If we are fortunate enough to live in a prosperous society where we can afford to buy beautiful home decor, it would be great if we could also find it in ourselves to think of others in the world we share. It would be great if we could choose items that make us happy while sparing them unnecessary pain and suffering. Maybe it would set us on a path to a better future for all.

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  • paulina hubli
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