Thursday, January 14, 2010

Haitian Relief, New Work, New Plans

Mixed collection of the new necklaces

Detail of 3 mm oxidized sterling silver "chain"

Detail of the 2 mm oxidized sterling chain with 3 mm at each end

I've been busy finishing, photographing, and posting a new series of necklaces. It's a new, sleek design that is so light weight and smooth, you'll barely notice you're wearing it. Most of my versions of this design use a nice cluster of semi-precious stones BUT it's the way I handled the "chain" that is especially unique, both in looks and in wearability. Basically, it's a strand of sterling silver beads--sometimes 3 mm, sometimes 2 mm--that's been oxidized and carefully buffed to create a strong pattern of dark and light.

There were some good comments about donations and relief funds left yesterday (thank you!) and I agree that cash is what is desperately needed to help the earthquake survivors in Haiti. But the more I observe this situation unfolding, the more I realize that the need there in Haiti, while great now, will not be solved by just sending emergency funding today. The entire city and the lives of many people need to be rebuilt. So I've decided that for the next month (30 days,) as an experiment, I'm just going to set aside 10% of the selling price for every piece that I sell from my Etsy or Artfire shops, gather it together, and donate it to the charity most appropriate to help Haiti after a month. What I mean by appropriate is, right now, my family put cash donations together for Red Cross and for Doctors Without Borders as immediate, emergency services, including medical care, are what is most needed right now. In a month, what will the burning need be as folks struggle to rebuild their lives and their city? Time will tell, but for this first stage, time is running out to help folks trapped in collapsed structures. It's just a heart wrenching situation.

At first, I was thinking about setting aside specific pieces tagged to sell for Haitian relief, and next, I was thinking about doing a series of work just for this fund raising purpose. But I got cold feet for either of these choices when it occurred to me that I really want to help raise some money, but I am the worst person at guessing what folks like and will actually buy from my shops. So since the customer always knows best, I eventually decided that just dedicating a set percentage for charitable giving was the best way to go! And if I have good fortune in these weeks leading up to Valentine's day, like I did last year, then I may be able to pull together a decent donation. So I'll begin on Saturday, January 16 because that is my next Etsy Showcase...and eventually, I'll post my final results here. I feel a little better already....doing something: the antidote to helplessness.


Anonymous said...

I WANT THE AMETHYST ONE! Those are super nice!

Marg said...

Those are great looking necklaces. I think it is hard in any business how to tell what people will buy. Just depends on who wants what. And I think it is wonderful that you have a goal of donating some money to the Haiti people. Wish I had something I could make to help them out. Great post.

Ann said...

I really like these necklaces. That chain is awesome.

It sounds like you have an excellent plan for helping out. Best wishes in your fund raising

Amy Lilley Designs said...

Your fund raising idea is wonderful Karen..I donate 10% of every sale to The Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation...I've decided to keep that as it is and send money to Doctors Without Borders...everyone is just aching to help in any way they can...I hope you do really well...

Love the simple elegance of the new pieces...

Anonymous said...

I hear's always surprising to see what actually sells vs. what your personal favorites are. I think that will be a good choice.

The new jewelry is so clever. I love the "chain" idea.

RE Ausetkmt said...

Pretty Necklaces Karen. I donated several times already. I think you are right on waiting for further donations; as medicines sans frontiers seems to need more money. they may be my charity next giving spree. trust me, this is going to be going on for a while. I'm also thinking of going in on a solar streetlight- that the manufacturer will donate one for every one that's purchased. Light is always good.

great post Karen. so where ya been girly cause I haven't seen ya comment lately on a BadGalSays.


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