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About Us

Kumy and I started Gilden Tree in Omaha, Nebraska in 1990, with a commitment to doing things the right way, for the environment and for the people who make, sell and buy our products.  We started with a remarkable terra-cotta tool called the Foot Scrubber®.

The truth is, I've always had bad feet, probably because I hated wearing shoes as a kid. When Kumy and I were living in Pakistan, I found a terra-cotta pumice stone that was pretty amazing - even on my terrible feet, and  I wondered if it could help other people.

We began working with two groups of women in Pakistan to make our Foot Scrubbers and I was right - people loved them!

Even in those very early days, we were passionate about being environmentally and socially responsible. Some of our early efforts seem crazy now (packing in air-popped popcorn?), but we were on the right track.   

Within a year or two, we began paying for the education of the children of the women who made our Foot Scrubbers, and later the women themselves, as a way to try to give something back.  

One of our proudest moments was when one girl's father said with mock irritation, "Oh that daughter of mine, she's always got her nose in a book!"  We now support The Citizens Foundation, an amazing local group that helps build schools and educate children in poor rural and urban areas.  

We were honored to be featured in a TIME Magazine article in December of 2005, focused on companies that work with artisan groups around the world, with a focus on giving something back

We've always been committed to making mindful decisions - from recycling paper and reusing “packing peanuts” and boxes in the warehouse, to choosing easily recyclable containers, and only working with natural, traditional, healing ingredients.

Wanting to do more to encourage environmentally-responsible manufacturing in Pakistan, we connected with an old friend who was willing to try making cotton robes for us without harsh dyes, chemicals or bleaches. 

It took a couple of years to perfect the process, but in the end we came up with beautiful, comfortable high-quality robes, gowns and bath towels, made with low-impact eco-friendly dyes and without chemicals or chlorine bleach.

Starting in 2003 we started switching to using primarily Certified Organic or Wild-crafted ingredients, while keeping products effective and a pleasure to use. 

We’ve stayed in Omaha, close to family and friends and have been blessed with wonderful, caring employees, responsible, ethical suppliers, and customers who make every day a great day.  

Our biggest thrill is when we know we've helped someone, so if our products have made your life easier in any way, we'd love to have you share your story with us!     

Several years ago, we asked our dear friend and gifted writer Suzanne Kehm to help us tell our story, and this is what she wrote:

Quite simply, our products work and, our products work simply.

We and the people who value our products are engaged in making, selling
and using products that simply make the world a little better.

Here’s how:

We see to it that the women of Pakistan who make our products 
go to school. So do their sons and daughters.

We hold a deep respect for beauty that is reflected in
our simple, thoughtful packaging, and we use resources mindfully.

Our ingredients are earths’ time-honored healers, her plants and minerals.

We mingle them conscientiously, matching the best
care traditions of elders and wise ones around the world,
with the most straightforward care practices available today.

The result?

Quite Simply
Gilden Tree

If you’d like to know how you can help make a difference, please see Helping Others.  Thanks for becoming a part of the Gilden Tree family!  

Ann and Kumy Thariani
Owners & Founders