Small business owner spreads a little love

Dwelling. Style. Compassion. Three words that define a small clothing boutique in Bryson City, N.C.


Humanité opened in March 2010 as the result of one young woman’s journey. In 2009, Erin Smith packed her bags and traveled to one of the last remaining kingdoms in the world: Swaziland, just north of South Africa. She went with Heart for Africa, a Christian non-profit charity that works closely with local churches and orphanages in the area.

Photo of Erin in Humanité

This life-changing experience inspired Erin to combine her passion for helping others with her love of fashion. From stylish clothing and shoes, to unique jewelry and home decor; every item in the store is hand-picked by Erin from markets across the United States. She stocks her store full of organic, reclaimed, local, and Fair Trade clothing labels that allow customers to make a difference while they shop. Ten percent of all Humanité’s profits are donated to Heart for Africa and local academic program, New Centuary Scholars.

Handmade display that showcases the store’s jewelry

Every time I talk to Erin I love to pick her brain. She is so passionate about what she is doing. I can’t seem to grasp the concept of leaving her store without buying something. It might be because the items are so stylish and affordable, or because I feel like I can make a little bit of a difference for someone else.

Some of the coolest products in the store right now are the beautiful scarves from fashionABLE. This non-profit organization helps to create sustainable businesses for the women of Africa. Every time these scarves are purchased, more jobs can be created for these women.

Check out this video to learn more!

Video from the fashionABLE website.

Humanité has redefined fashion. Kindness. Giving. These are the ideals behind Erin’s business. It’s more than a clothing boutique, it’s making a difference.

Learn more about Humanité on their website, blog, or Facebook page.

Photos taken by Alisha Lambert



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