I have not posted about my most recent trip to the DR in April. What an amazing trip! Project I See you and Freedom Collective International traveled together to meet a new artisan partner in Barahona, a region of the DR known for mines that contain Larimar. Larimar is a blue stone only found in the Dominican Republic. It is beautiful and rare and used in many jewelry designs in the Dominican.
On our journey to this region of the country, we met two local artisans Manolo and Oscar. Manolo sources the larimar and also cuts the stones and polishes them. He then sends them to Oscar, a silversmith, who sets them into beautiful sterling silver rings and sterling silver earring studs. We were able to watch him make rings for us. It will always be one of my favorite pieces of jewelry!
We also sourced round larimar beads to be used in our Te Veo line jewelry which is made by the women of La Canita, DR. They currently make the rest of the Te Veo Dominican line along with Miguel who is our cow horn artisan. Securing this pipeline of materials was a huge accomplishment for us! To find local larimar artisans we can support directly was our goal, and we found a great partnership!
My favorite part of the trip was exploring more of the country and sleeping in 6 different beds in 7 nights! Wow, what a whirlwind. It allowed me to dream, brainstorm, research, see the beauty of the country and continue to build new partnerships both for the women we work with as well as for Freedom Collective.