This range of northern islands is rather isolated from the rest of the world. They do some trade with the large continent to the east, but the distance is just far enough and the waters treacherous enough to make this an uncommon occurrence rather than an established trade route. The Windclaw Isles do have several mines mining precious metals though, something which is always interesting for traders (and pirates). In addition to the precious metals, which the isles export both in raw form and in the form of elaborate art objects, jewelry and other forms of decoration, there is also a lot of animals worth hunting for their pelts on the isles. Of these, the Winter Wolf is the most prized, but also the rarest and most difficult to hunt. These pelts are often made into elaborate clothing on the isles itself, but the base pelts are also often traded. In return for these attractive goods, the isles imports a lot of foodstuffs, primarily fruits since the climate on the islands is not the best for fruit orchards. Locally grown produce is generally limited to the hardier vegetables and a little grain. Some areas of the isles are better suited to growing other kinds of crops, but generally these areas are too small to provide a proper supply for the whole of the island chain.
The island chain is located a bit to the north, and very exposed to the open ocean from all sides. This makes the climate on the islands a bit harsh and cold, giving the people from the isles a reputation of being a hardy lot. Generally people from the isles are rather friendly (although some people seem intent on changing this perception all by themselves).
The demi-humans have become popular employees of several craftsmen in the cities however, due to their excellent craftsmanship skills. Items created by them often fetches double of what a similar item from a human would. Granted, they use almost 10 times as long to make the item in the first place, but then again, shortage is on materials, not man-hours, so it is generally a good deal.