Sunday, March 25, 2007
Found: "Egyptian Cotton" in Egypt
The coveted "Egyptian cotton" is hard hard to find in Egypt because the good stuff is exported. While I was registering for baby clothes and recently, looking for cloth diapers, I saw tons of overpriced items that were "100% Egyptian Organic cotton, made in Egypt". The nicest things that I have that were made in Egypt, I bought in the States. I wondered where I could get quality things here.
Yesterday, I went to a store called The Bio Shop and found some items by Sckoon and Under the Nile for reasonable prices. I think some of these items might be factory seconds or discontinued items or patterns. You do have to be careful because size mean nothing in Egypt. Clothing often has sizes, but they aren't standardized. Even within this store, I found two of the same item, with the same European size which is the child's height given in centimeters (ex. 68 cm), that were drastically different sizes.
I bought a very soft, "organic" cotton hooded towel, two cotton menstrual pads with inserts (that I have been thinking about trying), an "organic" cotton diaper and insert, a shirt for Ian and a natural colored "organic" cotton blanket with a light brown edge to coordinate with his brown-toned clothing for a grand total of 144 LE or about $25. Then, for fun, I checked out the same items on the Sckoon and Under the Nile websites and what I bought would have been over $100, not including shipping costs and using the lowest sale prices I found and assuming that liners were included. If, I add in shipping, regular prices and buy liners seperately it would be much more.
After I got home, I did a little research and found that the manufacturer is the Sekem Group. Supposedly, the farming and cultivation practices are certified organic by DEMETER. The Sekem Group provides schooling, healthcare and other benefits to their workers and operate through "fair trade". I found a list of stores in Egypt that carry their products. Good to know. The summer clothes are coming in this week, so I hope to find some good deals.