This last week, our newest product launched on the Noonday Collection website. If you don’t know about Noonday Collection, you have to check them out. We met the founder, Jessica, last year through a mutual friend and have watched in amazement as their company grew by leaps and bounds. The reasons are pretty simple–Jessica and her team have impeccable taste and they work with some amazing artisans who receive a fair price for their beautiful work.
When Jessica asked us to come up with some designs for their new spring line, we were pretty ecstatic. We had two artistic crocheters who had been designing some lovely earrings and necklaces that we launched last year, like this signature piece:
And then we found out that one artisan moved to Houston almost overnight, which just left the amazing and indomitable Huang to handle all of the jewelry-making.
We asked Huang to come up with some samples and she’s worked her fingers hard all spring to design new bracelets, while she’s teaching her friends her intricate techniques as quickly as possible in order to increase our capacity to make new jewelry. The thing is, she’s a natural teacher and leader, and it’s been a joy to watch her assess her friend’s ability and assign them tasks so increase the speed at which they learn her lessons about tatting and jewelry-making. They have a pretty good time hanging out together.
I love this picture because it captures so many of their personalities. Huang’s second from the left, working hard on adding chain to a new piece.
While she was busy teaching her friends, I took the base of the bracelets, the crocheted parts, and hung them out in the sun. Huang also dries mustard for her friends, a tangy smell which seeps into the cloth. A day of drying out in the sunlight and they are perfect. As I pulled them off my make-shift clothesline, I breathed in the smell of my neighbor cutting his grass, the outdoorsy scent of my fence posts still warm with the heat of the setting sun, and the organic smell of cloth that the wind has blown through all day. We do this with all of our Hill Triber products and it reminds me of my grandmother’s stories of pulling their laundry in from the line. I love that this project has brought me back in many ways to a simpler, lovelier time.
We worked together to add the findings on the bracelets, bronze ribbon clasps and a shiny gray bead to give it a little zing, and then hand-delivered them to Jessica’s house. A few days later, they appeared in the Noonday photo shoot.
If you want some ideas about how to look good and give back this season, go to their spring/summer lookbook.
What I love about Noonday Collection is that every item they sell has a story and a maker just like Huang, an artisan whose work contributes to the livelihood of her family. Check out our bracelets and grab some earrings, or a bag, or a gorgeous belt. You’ll be glad you helped women all over the world create a better world for their families using their artistry.