FROM BULLETS TO BEADS
The artillery collection represents redemption. Giving something that had the power to cause pain and destruction, and using it to empower positive change.
The artillery collection comes from Ethiopian women who specialize in working with recycled bullet casings left over from the war between Ethiopia and Eritrea over a decade ago. These bullets have been stockpiled and crafted into beads you can see in our bracelets, earrings, and necklaces from Ethiopia.
The cooperative who makes the jewelry consists of a group of 35 women on the outskirts of Addis Ababa Ethiopia. Formerly prostituted, these women now make more money creating fair trade jewelry than they did on the streets, so they're able to escape their former situations. They start with a year-long rehabilitation program, paid for by the profits the artisan cooperative makes through sales of jewelry. The women receive stipends for housing, food, and education through the rehab program, and they spend the last 6 months of the year in skills training, where they get to pick between about 6 trades, one being jewelry-making.