Wednesday, December 5, 2007

Featured Artist: Samantha of JoyaVerde

Joya Verde --a beautiful name for a beautiful Etsy shop! The shop owner is Samantha, who lives in Minneapolis (yay, EtsyMN!). The shop stands out not only for its fine handcrafted jewelry but also for its generous spirit: With each purchase, Samantha makes a donation to help save the rainforests.

Samantha explains, "My mission is to create stunning beaded pieces while also giving something back to the world. With each purchase, I will donate $1 to Sustainable Harvest International, an amazing charity that is dedicated to restoring the rainforests and creating sustainability in the communities around the rainforest. They have received a 4 star rating on Charity Navigator. According to the Sustainable Harvest website,, a $25 donation plants 100 trees. So, each time you purchase a beautiful piece of jewelry, it's like you are planting 4 trees!"

Isn't that awesome? Samantha took time to answer our questions about her work and shop:

Creative Sundries: What inspires you in your jewelry making?

JoyaVerde: Simple elegance is what I strive for in all my pieces. I love clean lines, with a bit of sparkle. I’m inspired by the idea that the jewelry I create is dancing around on someone’s ear, or gracing someone’s neckline. It’s exciting to think that someone is selecting a piece I’ve made to compliment their outfit. I’m also inspired by donating a bit from each piece to a wonderful charity like Sustainable Harvest. Although $1 doesn’t seem like much, every little bit adds up, and knowing that I can do my own small part is a good feeling.

Creative Sundries: How did you get involved with Etsy?

Joya Verde: I heard about Etsy from a magazine article and thought it would be a fun place to sell the kind of jewelry that, in the past, I’ve made for friends and family.2.

Creative Sundries: Do you take custom orders?

JoyaVerde: I love taking custom orders! It thrills me to know that I’m making a piece specifically for someone based on their request. Knowing that a piece has a home waiting, as it is being created, gives the piece a special purpose. It is also so rewarding when someone gives me a vague idea of what they want and is then excited when I create something that they love!

Creative Sundries: What are your favorite materials to work with?

JoyaVerde: My absolute favorites are Swarovski crystals! The range of colors is spectacular and the way the light reflects off of them makes them an elegant choice, yet they are also versatile enough to look great with a classic pair of jeans. I also like working with stones like onyx, agate and jade. They make great additions to simple necklaces.

Creative Sundries: What do you love most about your work?

JoyaVerde: Spending time in the bead store and finding inspiration in the wonderful colors, and then getting home and putting all my ideas together is the most fun!

Creative Sundries: What have you found most challenging?

JoyaVerde: The most challenging part is trying to venture out from the kinds of pieces I normally create to make something completely different.

Be sure to visit JoyaVerde on Etsy!

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