Artist: Kathy Pine
Website: World Wise Jewelry
I have designed and created jewelry as a hobby for more than 15 years. A few years ago, friend introduced me to the growing fair trade movement, which seeks to support craftspeople and their communities in developing nations through higher pay, improved labor conditions, and development support. It was a natural fit with my desire to create ethical jewelry. I was an early champion of using reclaimed precious metals to avoid the environmental damage caused by new mining. In 2009, I became a member of the Responsible Jewellery Council, whose mission is "To advance responsible ethical, social and environmental practices, which respect human rights, throughout the diamond and gold jewellery supply chain, from mine to retail." I'm currently a member of its Standards Committee.
I recently launched a distinctive line of elegant handmade jewelry that incorporates socially and environmentally responsible practices. My signature is using textile techniques to shape and weave precious metal wire, creating intricate jewelry designs that incorporate organic fair trade beads, charms, and semiprecious stones. I'm now offering a broad selection of eco-friendly necklaces, earrings and bracelets for sale on my newly-redesigned Web site, World Wise Jewelry. Many feature dyed tagua nut beads, or colorful ceramic beads from Kazuri, a fair trade company in Kenya that employs over 350 people.
I also am committed to contributing 10% of my profits to Women for Women International, which provides women survivors of conflicts and crises with tools and resources to move toward stability. Their approach combines microlending with direct aid. They have helped more than 150,000 women and their families since 1993.
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