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coucoudre mini

Coucoudre is a social impact organization that works with refugees in the canton of Vaud to repair clothing and create sewn products from recycled fabrics. Know-it-all passport's pop up shop, Know-it-all Marketplace, from last year was delighted to form a bond with this dynamic group. We wanted to let our readers know what they have to offer.

We talked to Katie Davis and Karen Thorsen to find out more. Coucoudre's ethos is based on three core values.

1. Supporting the human potential of refugees and creating a community commitment to them. The refugees we help are professional seamstresses in their home countries and, by working for Coucoudre, they can use this existing talent to support their families. We support their integration into the local community through these activities. They not only sew for Coucoudre but are invited to participate in the sale of the products so they can engage with the users of the products.

2. To promote a sustainable impact in the textile industry. All products created by Coucoudre are made from unwanted or damaged textiles and clothing donated to us locally. The global textile industry is one of the dirtiest and most socially irresponsible industries in the world. We want to help change that by reducing the amount of fabric that ends up in landfills.

3. Offer a repair solution to reduce the damage of the ever-growing fast fashion industry. We want to encourage people to "repair rather than buy new".

In Spring 2021 we opened our Repair Café in Nyon. We are open every Tuesday from 11h-17h. People can then bring their repairs to the tailors and buy our products. 

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Are you looking to sell some gold? We all have some pieces of jewelry that we were given as a child or teenager that we no longer need or want. Why not sell them and use the money towards an item that you really want?

If you are like me, I was skeptical of shops that claim that they will buy your gold for cash on the spot. I wasn't sure how legitimate or how generous the shops were. I'm happy to report my findings to you so you don't have to check from shop to shop for the best price. Know-it-all passport® is based on recommendations, and this is certainly one of those times. Here is how it all started:

A friend of mine went first. Here is what she reported: "I went to 3 different buyers near Cornavin in Geneva. First was Goldhaus jewelry shop just opposite Cornavin that has a sign on the door stating they buy gold. She estimated them at Fr. 150.-. 

"Another shop at 12, boulevard James-Fazy offered Fr. 98.- for the same items the same day. It sounded totally different from the first place and really so much less.

"Then I happened to go to Gold Service. The person who helped me was very pleasant and looked at the rings, weighed them, and calculated the value at Fr. 166.40. He went on to professionally explain how the method works and would I like to continue with him."

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We recently found out about John Glass' new book. His Calvin Tours, walking tours around the city of Geneva, sparked the obvious next step and to publish a book with all the amazing knowlege his has accumulated over the years. He has kindly offered a signed copy of his book to one lucky knowitall.ch reader: John Calvin’s Geneva - A Walking Guide.

Why did you start? What has been the inspiration?

I started the Calvin Tours project because I have lived in Geneva for almost 48 years and became passionate about Geneva’s astounding history that I felt should be told in a modern-day way, as many people don’t realize that the Geneva Reformer John Calvin actually changed the world in many ways! Let me explain.

I was born in Paris of American parents and raised in Geneva. My Dad was a businessman and my Mom a journalist at the UN and a radio talk show host on Radio 74 in a show called Freely Speaking with Ginna Lewis. As a kid in Geneva attending the International School, like most, I knew nothing of John Calvin and Geneva’s rich Reformation history and wasn’t even interested.

John Calvins Geneva inside

In 1976, when I was just 19, I took a 6-month solo trip that literally changed my life and redirected my interest to pastoral ministry. I first went to Israel where, through the many biblical sites, I was exposed to the person and work of Jesus-Christ. From there I backpacked overland through Turkey, Iran, Afghanistan, Pakistan and India. It is in India that I embraced Jesus-Christ as my Lord and Savior. My life would never be the same again. Upon my return to the US, I ended up attending seminary in California with goals of coming back to Geneva as a pastor. I have been pastoring Bible churches in Paris and now Geneva for the last 34 years.

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We finally got the information that some strawberries are finally available to pick at the following locations. Due to the amount of rain and cold weather, these dates are unusually late for the season. Local farms will be heaving with fresh produce soon. Opening dates for self-pick farms vary according to the availability of ripe fruits. Please check with individual sites before going. We will update this article as we get new information.

Strawberries are in season right now so take advantage of picking your own! Here are a few farms that have a u-pick strawberry system. Make sure to bring your own containers to some of the places. Some carry other seasonal items such as rhubarb, aparagus, tomatoes, and lettuce. 

** La Fraisière Feuillasse
10, rte H.-C. Forestière
1217 Meyrin (GE)
022 782 90 58
Strawberries available since 31 May 2021. Open daily 8h-18h30. Their FaceBook page is more up-to-date on daily produce.

** Self-Fruits Perroud
Rte de Rombuet 148
1616 Attalens
079 660 33 65
Early June: Basic schedule for strawberries: 8h30-11h30 and 15h-17h weather-permitting and what fruit is still available or ripe. Rhubarb is in season right now too. During the days and hours when the strawberries are open, someone from the farm will welcome you at the car park or at the cash desk. Thank you for respecting the instructions. Go to the checkout to weigh (tare) the empty containers.
The guide will show you where to pick.

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We've been following Sian Sibley's brocante sales for years. If you don't know what "brocante" is, then the best way to describe it would be between a garage sale and a fine antique shop; treasures that were previously concealed in attics and basements have been carefully found and put on glorious display. There is usually something for everyone in Sian's sales. Her prices are reasonable and she only has the best quality items. No dusty dirty or broken articles here... just amazing useful or decorative vintage items that she has sourced for you.

An upcoming sidewalk sale in Carouge, GE, peaked our interest to write an article and Sian has kindly offered up 2 vouchers for a competition! Read on to find out more about Broccoli Brocante.

Why did you start? What has been the inspiration? 

Ever since childhood I have always been fascinated by old things. I think it started at the age of 8 helping to clear out the cottage of a great aunt in Snowdonia (Wales) and coming across things like a crinoline, a stoneware water bottle and postcards of the 1916 Easter Rising in Ireland. Simple things from another era; I was hooked.

I went on in my mid-twenties to become a qualified social history curator in Wiltshire (England) for the County Council and then at Devises Museum. After my three sons were born, this career was soon abandoned. When my family moved to nearby Gex in 2001, I discovered a whole new world of vide greniers and marché aux puces and took delight in furnishing our idyllic French farmhouse. That then morphed into a hobby business where private sales at the house took off by word-of-mouth. I continued in earnest when we moved to Prangins, Switzerland.