” To see things in the seed, that is genius” —Lao Tzu
These 3 jewelry makers create intricate, lively and elegant pieces that are as sustainable as they are beautiful. All three featured brands and organizations employ artisans from forgotten communities that use seeds to craft incredibly detailed and exotic earrings, bracelets and necklaces that echo the ornaments of rainforest dwellers.
Tagua, also known as vegetable ivory, is obtained from the seed of a palm tree nut. Practically as dense and durable as animal ivory, tagua can be dyed (it takes bright colors very well) and cut into thin discs and beads to make jewelry that brings together exotic materials and modern design. Since tagua trees produce several bushels of seed pods per year, with up to 100 tagua nuts in a pod, they are considered a sustainable and harm-free material for jewelry production. Organic Tagua Jewlery shares the creativity of the people of Ecuador, the native country of the tagua tree.
Founded in order to facilitate access to international markets for rural artisans, Chiapas Bazaar brings us the most exquisite accessories from the crafty minds of Chiapas, Mexico. The founding couple of the Bazaar established the marketplace in order to purchase pieces from these incredibly talented artisans and share them with the rest of the world. Using everyday ‘trash’ such as orange peels and guaje seeds as materials, these artisans have managed to create impressively beautiful and wearable jewelry. Who would have thought that tree resin or seeds could be turned into a pair of earrings? The seedburst earrings above are made from guaje seeds, found in the pods of the Tamarind tree, with a painted orange pea seed in the middle.
Ecuadorian Angelica Cocha founded Eco-Vogue in 2010 in an attempt to improve the lives of locals craftsmen and the local economy. All of the necklaces, bracelets, earrings and belts in the collection are handmade out of nuts and seeds, making the completely organic, eco-friendly and sustainable. The Ecuadorian artisans most often use tagua nut for their exotic creations but acai seed and pambil also appear in their work, as with the bracelet above. These seeds have been used for hundreds of years in South American communities and promoting the jewelry crafted from them helps to improve the local community and reduce rainforest destruction.
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