Since I work as a "crafter" (yes it says crafter on my business card) for a living, I don't get to work on art at home as much as I would like to. Knowing that there is one craft fair a year I should be participating in—the Martha Stewart Holiday Craft Fair–it gives me a reason to work on some different stuff than I do at the office. This year I approached the sale a bit differently—a bit selfishly I guess! I thought about what I wanted for Christmas and there really wasn't any "thing", except that I want to help. How can I do something to help? If I had the money I would support the organizations I believe in and promote, when I could, what they do. The only way I can help is to do what I do, make what I make, and make it for a cause—so that is what I did.
For the past six months I have been working on a three piece collection that supports three different animal institutes I feel passionate about. With each piece in the collection I sell, I will donate to the non-profit that inspired it.
I was lucky to have met the renowned primatologist Jane Goodall, when she visited the Martha Show a few years back—I have never been so "star struck" in my life. The first piece I worked on is dedicated to what Jane has worked so hard to protect, the chimpanzees. The Jane Goodall Institute contributes to the preservation of the great apes and their habitats, among many other humanitarian work. For each buyer of a Chimp Necklace, I will make a donation to enroll them as a member of the Jane Goodall Institute.
Elephants were my favorite animals as a child. Consequently, after seeing a youtube video about Shirley the elephant and her incredible life, I knew I had to make a piece to benefit the place that came to her rescue. The Elephant Sanctuary in Tennessee is a natural habitat refuge for elephants—a place where elephants can be with elephants and where there is room to roam. For each buyer of an Elephant Necklace, I will make a donation for them to become a "friend" of The Elephant Sanctuary in Tennessee.
This piece comes in a different form. I call it a mourning vial. It is a vessel to keep near to your heart a lock of hair of a lost pet or a loved companion. Although this piece may seem a bit morbid, it pays tribute to all the dogs, cats, birds, bunnies, etc. that are homeless today or have been euthanized. For each buyer of a mourning vial, I will make a donation for them to become a member of the ASPCA®. The American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals® works to end animal cruelty and aids in finding homes for so many needy animals.
I hope if you are in New York City on Saturday, December 4th, you will come by the Martha Stewart offices, 601 West 26th street, and support homemade, well made and original arts!