In Organic Jewelry by Allie we create eco jewels with good karma giving back to the community. Our customers feel empower with statement and colorful jewels and knowing 10% percent of the sales give back in education to orphan girls in Ecuador. We truly believe a girl who grows with love and education will become and successful and useful woman for her community.
More important, the artisan women who work in our designs in Ecuador have the freedom to work from home and raise their families with economic independence. With our jewelry we feel fortunate and blessed to empower women from all origins, ages and backgrounds.
Our inspiration does not come from trends born in fashion capitals like New York or Paris to create contemporary jewels, but from the natural world surrounding us , its shapes, colors and seasons. Our designs are nature inspired and nature ethically sourced. We create designs with natural symbolism resembling rainforest flowers and animals and our colorful palette is inspired in the color explosion found in thriving ecosystems.
All our media is organic and come either from sustainable harvested Amazon rainforest seeds, and nuts, or are recycled repurposed materials like wood coming from wine barrels from CA wine country where Alessandra Thornton, the creative, has her residence. The media we selected for our jewelry is promoting sustainability and preservation of rainforest trees for their economic value in producing seeds for jewelry.
For threading and weaving we prefer to use cotton, raffia, hemp, straw and other organic fabrics or hypoallergenic mediums over metal chains .
For leather we use either leatherette or ethical leather, recycling the skin of the tilapia fish farmed for food production in Ecuador and Brazil instead of the skin of exotic animals like lizard, crocodiles, caimans and snakes unfairly killed for their skin. Tilapia leather is soft, not fishy, have beautiful texture, resembling snake scales and have the resilience of the suede.
We are cruelty free, the tagua nut used in our jewelry is the alternative against animal ivory due its ivory milky color, so we can said that the vegan ivory grows in the trees, and our jewels create awareness about elephant protections.
The dies that give color to our ivory nut and produce our characteristic colorful jewels are also organic from earth and plant dies, and when dying the environment and the rivers are preserved against chromium contaminant like is the case of the Italian dies that contaminate the water sources in many villages in India.
The metals we used are ethically sourced and we use only Canada of American vendors who have commitment with clean mining practices free of mercury and respecting the well being of the miners taking out the metals from the mines.
OUR INMIGRANT ORIGINS AND MISSION:
Allie Thornton was a successful T.V. and magazines journalist in Ecuador with a degree in Archeology, she worked for the Anthropological Museum of the Central Bank in Ecuador and in the Public relations office of a presidential candidate, when moved to America in 2005, besides volunteering at the Archaeological Center in San Diego, she started a small business showing in the local farmers markets around San Diego, CA, the artisan handicrafts from her country.
In 2009 the live presented her with a trip that changed her mission and vision in life and gave her a sense of purpose , a meaning to her life.
She was doing a acquisitions in a small village of tagua artisans in Manabi, Ecuador. It was a time also of one of the most destructive “El Nino” rainy seasons, during a photo shooting of the tagua rainforest trees , she have to drive around rural agricultural towns and discovered that everything was under water, entire villages, rice crops, potato farms, cows and ranch animals where also floating in surreal lakes caused by the flood of rivers and the roads connecting to the city centers where cut with water. She have to ask heaven in a small town that night until the water from a flooded river dries or get away from a main road connecting to the closest big city.
In sadness of the environmental and social disaster and the bad luck of the villagers, she realized like in the case of banana , fruit that is an Ecuador exportation staple, which grows in trees, the tagua nut also grows in tall palm trees and under a heavy rainy season, these are the few crops that can be safe and if people have other income like the crafting of tagua jewels, they can survive the lost of their harvest during bad EL NINO seasons.
In that specific moment she decided to commit her live to the mission of creating awareness about organic jewelry and its important role in the preservation of rainforest and the creation of alternative Eco jobs that can provide income to families totally dependent on solely agriculture.
OUR CORE VALUES AND BUSINESS MODEL:
Our fair price model give independence to the artisans who does not work in sweat shops , but from their own workshops located in their own home and receive for each piece the fair value they want to receive for their work. We are not fair trade certified but our business model is totally fair value and respecting the wellbeing of the makers.
From university training, Allie Thornton went to artisan training, learning with humble spirit from artisan women, the ancient beading techniques she uses in her jewelry, weaving, macramé, knotting, hand crocheting . For that reason she value and pays fair value to each person who works in her designs, because she is not only a designer , she is a true artisan , and knows how much time and effort and skills and actually love , takes another artisan to work in her creations.
We believe business is not divorced from ethics, integrity , fairness, generosity, environmentalism and community involvement and this business model makes a difference not only for the makers but for the customers who appreciate and enjoy our jewels.
We have been creating slow jewelry before the slow fashion movement became a trend. The process or dry, die, harden and polish a raw nut harvested from a tree is not fast, it takes up to 6 months for a nut to dry, 2 weeks to dry the colors, days and countless hours of beading, carving , polishing and finally treating the nuts so they get curated like wood and protected against bugs and humidity changes. We don’t cut roads or steps in our artisan production, and because we warranty our jewelry will last to the next generations our prices are not cheap, are fair because they take in accounts the time we expend in this slow and fair jewels.
OUR CHARITY WORK AND VISION FOR THE FUTURE:
We release every year meaningful collections, who create awareness, about climate change, ocean conservation and try to denounce with beautiful art, environmental issues that involves us all, giving our customers the power to create a powerful impact with their fashion choices.
We are currently active donors and members of Defenders of Wildlife, The Nature Conservancy, Ocean Conservancy, Center of Biological Diversity and National Wildlife Federation because these ONGs share our commitment for nature conservation and protection of rainforest bio diversities.
We believe the future for the fashion is in uniqueness over mass production, because massive cheap fashion is an unsustainable model and creates an use today and discard tomorrow mentality. Our jewels are produced in small batches and we can warranty a piece you select today, you will not see in the neck or hands of another woman in a wedding party or social event.
Also the uniqueness and natural veins and size of the nuts and seeds can not me molded, like in acrylic production, the natural medium personality, warranties there will not 2 pieces exact to each other, you can see that specially in our raw nut rings.
Recently with the pandemic , we have started to create truly OOAK earrings collections made of straw, tagua, and mixed media where you will find each time, different colors and designs put together with our sensibility and the natural materials we have on hand in our USA studio.
In the future we see us leaving a legacy for others. At the end of our lives the value of a person is not in how much money that person left in the bank or in the stock market, but in the lives that person touched in a positive way.
We will continue with our Operation Girl Empowerment work, giving Barbie dolls and educational tools to orphan girls in Ecuador, but we want to give also scholarships to those girls. We create every year more designs for our charity line “You rescued Me” which promotes animal rescue and donates 30% of the sales to provide food to our local rescue places , but we want to be able to pay large veterinary bills to save an abandoned or abused pet’s life when is needed.
Our brand vision is to continue promoting with passion and love our Nature inspired, Organic jewels until Organic Jewelry by Allie, becomes known , not by social media paid advertising but by a word of mouth promoted by our loyal customers, our best ambassadors, and we became the best jewelry statement between people living an organic, sustainable lifestyle and between those conscious shoppers who love ethical, unique and mission driven jewelry.
The woman that wears our jewels, like us love, statement, colorful, unique and happy jewels, is not shy to call attention with beautiful pieces that have a story behind and are great conversation openers. The tropical, vacation resort feeling of our jewels will transport you to a special moment in your life, a visit to the Amazon or that paradise island where you did tons of exploration, and adventures. Even in a rainy dark day, our jewelry have the power to bright your day.
You have the power to empower you, while empowering other women, and empowering environment renovation with Organic Jewelry by Allie.