@nicalifejewelry // Nicaragua
Our mission is to provide a livable income for talented women in Nicaragua. Some women will work for us for the foreseeable future to raise their children and grandchildren. This is their dream. Some women will work for us for a short while, to earn money so that they can attend university and achieve dreams of becoming a pharmacist, teacher, etc. We want to help all our artisans achieve their dreams, whatever it may be.
Very early on, we met a group called UPNicaragua. This organization works with at risk girls to end poverty and abuse. The girls work with mentors and arts & crafts are a big part of the mentoring relationship. The time they spend crafting together gives them time to talk… Sort of like a family would at dinner.
When we met the girls they were making beautiful paper beads, which has become sort of a signature of Granada arts & crafts. We began purchasing the paper beads to use in our designs to represent this beautiful area of Nicaragua and to support this wonderful organization. The vibrant colors of the beads have become a symbol of hope, and the uniqueness of each bead speaks to the uniqueness of each of the girls.
“We design our pieces to embody Nicaragua. It is a beautiful and diverse country.”
Our designs capture the spirit of the surf towns on the coast, blending fashion trends with the laid back surf vibe of Nicaragua. We’ve also added pieces inspired by the highlands and the Women of El Plomo. The women have been using the seeds in their work for years. This amazing group has been supporting the local school children with their jewelry. The children collect the native seeds in exchange for school supplies so that they can attend school. We collaborated with them to incorporate their design ideas into new pieces for Nica Life. This collection represents the feeling of the Nicaraguan highlands. It is vibrant and warm, just like the women!
When we travel, we always spend time experiencing the place like a local would, which opened our eyes to some of the struggles people face. We knew Nicaraguans have a lot of struggles. Wages there are very low. A lot of people work in the coffee fields for a little as $1.50 a day. This can buy a carton of milk with only a bit left over. How could they feed their families on this? We started to see what we could do. That’s when we met Santa. She made Nica Life possible. After we met, started to work with us because she had met so many wonderful women in several communities during training offered by a non-profit group, but she wanted to do more. Now that the women understand personal finances and savings, she wanted to be able to offer a job that would provide a better life. Santa took us around Nicaragua where we met the Women of El Plomo and artisans in Granada.
Much of the look of the brand was inspired by these women, as they really inspired us!