They alway say its not what you know, it’s who you know. I say most often it’s both, and this is true for some talented Native American women in New Mexico whose jewelry making craftsmanship is celebrated and shared by a group of super supporters at Etkie.
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Founder Sydney Alfonso grew up in rural New Mexico, and founded Etkie for the financial and social empowerment of Native American jewelry artisans there. And you know how much we love businesses that empower women. Etkie partners with Kiva to offer the women micro-loans and business resources to fund their jewelry making loom work, a skill passed down from generation to generation in that region, and the Etkie online shop let’s us all get access to their spectacular works, at a fair price to them.
In other words, this is not the beaded jewelry you see on the streets of New York. This is fine art and craftsmanship.
You can just tell from the colors and designs that the beads are so carefully selected and set on the deerskin lining. Any one makes a perfect summer accent piece, and although they are not inexpensive, with some topping out close to $200, when you consider the work, skill and materials required, it makes perfect sense.
And that’s the point.
Etkie’s recent successful Indiegogo campaign will allow them to hire five more Native American women to help keep their beautiful traditions alive and to launch their new summer line of wrap bracelets (shown above) to help the rest of us to look fabulous. We are so happy to have discovered them, and definitely look forward to seeing–and wearing–more of their designs.