Wednesday, May 4, 2011

Ever Wondered What Jewelry People Recycle?

The source of my inspiration is my jewelry recycling service - Canadians can visit my recycle page to order a prepaid envelope for recycling your old, broken, unwanted jewelry. When someone talks to me in person about recycling jewelry, they often confess that they wonder if I will even like what they send - will I be able to do anything with it?

I always reassure my customers that any donation
of recycled jewelry is a good one - when something is reduced to its parts there is often beauty found in the beads or components. Even if your recycled jewelry isn't directly used in the ecocessories jewelry line, it is being collected for future educational projects. I opened 4 Jewelry Recyclers' envelopes yesterday and was so pleasantly surprised by what was in each one. I spread out the contents to show you a few examples of what arrives in my jewelry recycling service:

{Donation from Jewelry Recycler 1}

Jewelry Recycler 1 sent me this baggie of recycled jewelry along with another baggie of a brooch and beads (not shown) to be used in a custom design. I am excited to work on this custom piece, as the brooch is gorgeous and its clasp is broken so otherwise it wouldn't be worn! I love the leaves in the recycled necklace, and the cute discs in these recycled earrings. The sterling silver seagull is attractive too, and I'm sure will make for a beautiful new simple statement piece!

{Donation from Jewelry Recycler 2}

Jewelry Recycler 2 definitely has more of a geometric and tribal influence to the jewelry she recycled. Turquoise and blue stones are nestled amongst intricate wire work and mixed metal squares and earrings will be perfect to repurpose. The metal needs a bit of cleaning, and then I will probably sort like coloured metals together. There is also a great strand of pink stones that will be ideal for making my Everyday Earrings style!

{Donation from Jewelry Recycler 3}

Jewelry Recycler 3 included a detailed note of most pieces in the envelope. This is not very common so I was pleasantly surprised and appreciated knowing the stories behind each piece. Much of this jewelry is handmade designer pieces that were purchase at the St. Lawrence market in Toronto, Ontario. The red square garnet stones and blue freshwater pearls will be inspiring to work with! I also appreciate the silver chains which will be great mixed with some old and new chain in a bracelet.

{Donation from Jewelry Recycler 4}

Jewelry Recycler 4 sent many pieces including some watches! I am saving watches and hope to get all the non-working ones repaired in preparation for some custom ecocessories watches! I love the beads in the bracelets that were recycled here - many of them are broken after years of love, so I'm happy the jewelry recycler decided to give these pieces a new life with ecocessories, as opposed to throwing them out.

Now what happens? Well I will disassemble all of these recycled pieces and sort the beads and components by colour. I will clean up the metal and put everything away in resealable bags and mason jars. The mason jars are organized by colour in my studio, and when I create my new ecocessories designs, this I where I draw my inspiration! If you are interested in recycling jewelry, visit my recycle page here. Do you recognize your recycled jewelry? Comment below!


Visit ecocessories to shop for recycled bead & sterling silver one-of-a-kind designs.

Monday, April 11, 2011

Take advantage of this week's Ethical Deal!

Have you heard of EthicalDeal? This eco-friendly group buying site features only companies with the environment at the top of their mind! I am excited to share that ecocessories has a coupon being featured as this week's national deal - get $50 of ecocessories jewelry for just $25!

Mother's Day is coming up on Sunday, May 8th and a piece of eco-friendly jewelry would make the perfect gift for mom. This deal is timed so you can shop and take advantage of free shipping in Canada with guaranteed arrival in time for Mother's Day! Buy your coupon now and spend it by April 26th to guarantee that your piece will arrive in time for Mom's special day.

{Get 50% ecocessories jewelry this week only with ethicalDeal! Visit the deal and purchase your coupon here}

Or, treat yourself to a new pair of feather earrings, or a sexy bracelet for Spring!

Visit ecocessories™ to shop for recycled bead & sterling silver one-of-a-kind designs.

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Visit ecocessories at the Green Living Show 2011

In just a little over 3 weeks ecocessories will be participating for the second year in the Green Living Show in Toronto, Ontario! I loved being a part of this show last year - I got a chance to connect with so many like-minded individuals and introduce my designs to Toronto! This year ecocessories will be participating as a part of the Fashion Takes Action boutique. Fashion Takes Action is a local organization that represents eco designers from across North America. The organization provides information, opportunities, and a community for eco-fashionistas like myself and has the collective goal of incorporating sustainability into every aspect of the fashion industry.

At the Green Living Show - happening from Friday, April 15th to Sunday, April 17th - there will be a Fashion Takes Action boutique featuring 20 eco fashion designers, and on Sunday afternoon at 1:30pm don't miss the fashion show!

I hope to see you there!


Visit ecocessories to shop for recycled bead & sterling silver one-of-a-kind designs.

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

International Women's Day

Today, Tuesday March 8th is International Women's Day. All over the world there are events happening that celebrate women, and their accomplishments. This is pretty amazing when you think about it - there will be one day where women across the globe will be devoting their energy towards this single celebration! That is a very powerful thing.

{Some amazing women in my life - my Nana, my mother, and my Grandma - thank you all for being such strong role models, and for all the love & support you've shown me!}

ecocessories is proud to supporting Ethik BGC's Women Day Event - retailer of ecocessories jewelry in Montreal, Quebec - with the donation of a door prize. This amazing event will feature an eco fashion show by the designers of Ethik BGC - a collective of over 40 women entrepreneurs from around the world.

{Top - donation to Ethik BGC in support of International Women's Day, Bottom - Arlene Dickinson, telling her story in support of Women's Resources in Lindsay, Ontario}

As for me, I will be spending International Women's Day with one of the strongest women I know, my best friend Ashley. Tonight, we're going to see one of my business idol's speak - Arlene Dickinson of Dragon's Den. Arlene is one of Canada's top business leaders, and she comes from humble beginnings. I can't wait to hear her story and be inspired by her path to success.

How are you spending International Women's Day? If you don't have a specific plan, maybe just take a minute to reflect on and appreciate the accomplishments of women in your life
! Happy International Women's Day!


Visit ecocessories to shop for recycled bead & sterling silver one-of-a-kind designs.

Thursday, March 3, 2011

Eco-friendly Upcycled Bangles for Spring

For ecocessories Spring/Summer 2011 collection "Tell a Story" I've been working with some recycled jewelry that I haven't reinvented before! In my collection of old, broken, unwanted jewelry, I've been saving brooches, stud earrings, and bangles, waiting for the perfect inspiration to strike.

Introducing wire-wrapped upcycled bangles! In my jewelry recycling service I received this set of tired bangles. These simple base metal bangles are painted, and their once vibrant finish has been somewhat muted with time. I found charm in the various shades of the bangles and selected an assortment of recycled beads to go with each bangle.

{Upcycled bangles, wrapped with recycled beads and 14K gold fill wire. Shop bracelets here!}

I cut pieces of 14K gold fill wire, and hammered a swirl in each end after threading on the bead. Each wire is tightly wrapped around the bangles, giving each piece a new artistic life! These bangles look great on their own, or with a few layered together! At only $24, these unique bangles are a great deal! Shop bracelets online now - but hurry, this set is one of a kind.

Hey - do you have any bangles that you'd like me to reinvent? I'd love to give your old jewelry a custom redesign - contact me to discuss your project today! Let me know what you think of the bangles... comment below.


Visit ecocessories to shop for recycled bead & sterling silver one-of-a-kind designs.

Monday, February 28, 2011

Spring/Summer 2011: Tell a Story

For the month of February, I tucked myself away in the ecocessories studio and have been designing the first pieces of the Spring/Summer 2011 collection - Tell a Story. I was inspired to create this collection by thinking about the very nature of ecocessories jewelry. Every piece features recycled beads that have a history and that come from very different pieces of recycled jewelry in the beginning. Every recycled bead in my eco jewelry pieces has been somewhere before, and those beads carry the stories of the world they've traveled and the lives they've touched before now.

{Clockwise: Mason jars of recycled jewelry, heart brooches being reinvented, recycled chain}

In the studio recycled jewelry is disassembled and sorted by colour in glass Mason jars full of history. Beads, brooches, chain and other components mix and mingle in rainbows of colour. While I was sorting through my recycled jewelry I started thinking about how great this mix of stories is. When someone has a piece of jewelry that doesn't suit their style or life any more, then can recycle it with ecocessories. Or, if a piece is broken or missing something, there is an opportunity for it to have a new life. Its story carries on.

{Clockwise: Caymen Island Fringe Necklace, Dew Drop Leaf Brooch, Wire-Wrapped Bangles - brooches and bangles are new for Spring!}

New ecocessories jewelry designs are hand crafted using precious metals (sterling silver & 14K gold fill) and the recycled beads. I hand forge all the clasps, earring wires, circles and other metal components in my designs. Most pieces that I design are one-of-a-kind, and have a unique vintage modern style. So often I hear from customers that they chose a piece just because it spoke to them. I believe that is the piece's story being revealed once it is ready to go to a new home.

The ecocessories jewelry collection features both simple, everyday jewelry and statement pieces that are sure to start a conversation! In this way the story carries on for all the recycled jewelry that went into creating your unique piece. So "Tell a Story" with your jewelry today, and shop the Spring/Summer 2011 collection online, and at a store near you.

Visit ecocessories™ to shop for recycled bead & sterling silver one-of-a-kind designs.

Monday, January 31, 2011

Reworked Vintage Brooches

Last week I was excited to come up with a new product! In my collection of recycled jewelry I have a number of brooches. Some come to me with minor defects so they need reinventing, or modification. Others arrive in perfect shape, but perhaps need a bit of modernization! In honor of the upcoming Valentine's Day I played with a few heart brooches in the ecocessories studio on Friday and came up with these 3 new pieces.

{Royal Love Golden Brooch, $44, Shop Now}

Continuing with the theme of hearts, these brooches feature recycled heart beads and draping recycled chain. The golden brooches are hand wrapped with 14K Gold Fill wire, and each piece is one-of-a-kind.

{Blue Crush Golden Brooch, $44, Shop Now}

For the past year I've been setting aside all of the hearts that came in through ecocessories' jewelry recycling service. I made these pieces in celebration of Valentine's Day coming up soon! These lovely, unique brooches would make a thoughtful gift for a girlfriend, best friend, mom or sister. Order by tomorrow, Feb. 1st to enjoy free shipping in Canada with guaranteed Valentine's Day arrival! Feb 8th is the deadline if you upgrade to Xpresspost shipping.

{Silver Heart Draping Brooch, $39, Shop Now}

I would love to hear what you think of the brooches. As this is a new product, I'll rely on your feedback to decide what direction to take this line! Comment below. Thank you!

Visit ecocessories to shop for recycled bead & sterling silver one-of-a-kind designs.

Monday, January 17, 2011

Jewelry Photography Tent

For Christmas this year, my husband got me this incredible photography tent to take pictures of my jewelry pieces! He certainly knows how to romance a jewelry designer. I am thrilled and excited to get to know this beautiful tent and the great photos it will produce. Photography has always been a challenge for me - but a necessary one to overcome so I can bring more great pieces to you here at the online shop.

{EZ Cube Light Box for taking shots of my jewelry}

Gone are the days where I pray for a sunny afternoon to take pictures by the window! Photography now has it's own dedicated corner in the ecocessories studio.

{Purple Pearl Ribbon Necklace - recycled faux pearls, purple glass, hand forged sterling silver circles & clasp - more details}

I still have to work on the lighting a bit more, but for a first shot it is pretty good! What do you think?

Visit ecocessories™ to shop for recycled bead & sterling silver one-of-a-kind designs.