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Behind The Scenes

How Flutter Does Fair-Trade

For Jill Golden, one of the most awesome things about having her own (rockin’) jewelry line Flutter is being a part of a larger network of female-owned businesses. “I really wanted to find a situation where I could help make a difference in other women business-owner’s lives,” she explains. The solution: a partnership with the Rwanda-based non-profit Indego Africa, which helped her create a crazy-colorful collection called Isaro, employing women from the cooperative Ejo Hazaza. Here’s how everyone came together. “I wasn’t looking to buy crafts that were designed by local artisans—I was looking for an organization that would help me find highly skilled artisans who would craft my designs.  The team at Indego Africa was excited about the designs I’d created and helped me find a group of artisans that were interested in learning a new skill.”   “I love that Indego Africa’s mission is to give 100% of their proceeds back to the artisans in training, literacy, education, and business skills. The long-term goal is to make these women so self-sufficient that Indego Africa is no longer necessary. Also, on a purely logistical side, they have a wonderful team here and in Rwanda to facilitate the importing of materials and exporting of the woven pieces. The cooperative—which is basically just another word for ‘business’—I’m working with is Ejo Hazaza, which means beads of tomorrow. It’s located outside of Kigali, and it includes 29 women, all of whom come from refugee camps.” “We taught the women, who are HIV-positive and receive healthcare, a fair wage, and free training through our partnership of Indego Africa, how to weave beads. We sent the looms and spent a lot of time training.  I think just finding a process that works for everyone has been the most challenging, but there is such dedication.” “This is Epiphanie Murekatete, the president of the cooperative. Their mission is to improve their lives and the lives of their families—and to have fun together and support one another while working. Unfortunately, I haven’t been able to travel to Rwanda yet, but I hope to go there soon and meet them all.” Jill’s back with an Alumni Sunday edition! Get this bracelet while you can!
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Jill Golden Goes to Seventies London (in her Mind)

You know the Christian the lion viral video? Well, that whole saga was the totally unexpected jumping-off point of what soon became Jill Golden’s obsession with London in the seventies—the fashion, homes, music, all of it. Turns out, her parents had visited the city during that period and dug up old travel slides from their time there, sealing the deal: She had to dedicate pieces of her glossy, easy-to-wear jewelry line Flutter to the era. Here’s what fueled the Jubilee collection—which includes her Of a Kind editions! —and how it came together. “1977 was the Queen’s Silver Jubilee, which was a huge celebration. But it was also a time of economic distress, which coincided with—or maybe sparked—the punk-rock movement. Perhaps the pinnacle of punk was the Sex Pistols’s controversial song ‘God Save the Queen’ and their performance on the Thames just days before the Jubilee.” “The rise of the punk-rock movement also extended into fashion, with Vivienne Westwood and her partner Malcolm McLaren, who was the manager of the Sex Pistols.“ “There was also a large presence by Biba in London at that time, with Barbara Hulanicki opening of her large department store—which had an Art Deco style—on Kensington High Street. I think all of these forces together made my collection a real mix of industrial and jeweled aesthetics, with colorful accents and a variety of materials and shapes.” “The first piece I did was the Rendall necklace—it has a bit of an industrial-slash-vintage vibe. The lions on the ends are a nod to that original documentary that started the whole adventure.” (And those are her parents’ images in the background!) Get Jill’s second Of a Kind edition now! This leather-woven gold bracelet will go fast…
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