Welcome to day two in my twelve-day celebration of North Vancouver’s Green Market, a wonderful artisan collective featuring handmade, local goods. Visit the store (7A Lonsdale ave, North Vancouver, behind Raglan’s) for tons of gift ideas for everyone on your list (including yourself, of course!) It’s so important to shop local and support your community, and you’ll be giving thoughtful, special gifts as opposed to mass manufactured, dime-a-dozen trinkets. These are gifts people will treasure.
(photo- Green Market)
For Day 2, I’m zeroing in on North Vancouver’s Shine Makes. Where to start with Shine Makes? I’ve known founder/artisan Carman Ho for nearly two years now, and I count her as one of my favourite people. When we first met, at the North Shore Shipyards Night Market on a balmy Summer evening, it was her clean skincare line that caught my eye. (I’ll be talking about that in another post, so stay tuned!).
I quizzed her about the ingredients in her deodorant (being the skeptic that I am, I wasn’t convinced that the formula would REALLY be natural, and if it was, I wasn’t convinced that it would work.)
Well, Carman stood up to my line of questioning without missing a beat, and she impressed me with her knowledge. I took a (confirmed natural) deodorant home and have since turned many a friend, follower, and family member into forever customers!
Since that time, Carman and I have gotten to be close friends, and I’ve become equally smitten with her whimsical, handmade jewelry. Locally sourced gemstones, charms, and hand-stamped coins are at the heart of Shine Makes‘ jewelry creations. Carman is a “firm believer that gemstones carry energy and healing power.” This, coupled with the obvious beauty of gemstones, is why she incorporates them into her radiant pieces. She’s been creating jewelry for quite some time, and she notes that part of what she loves about owning her own business is the quality time she gets to spend with her two young children.
Shine Makes’ jewelry is certainly beautiful and unique, with a wide range of gold-dipped raw crystals, hand-stamped treasures, gemstone pendants, and more, and this busy, tireless artisan is constantly at markets, in stores and online promoting her brand and her fellow artisans (have a five-minute conversation with her and you’ll see just how passionate she is about supporting local and handmade.) But aside from the beauty, what makes Carman’s work special is the heart and soul she puts into it.
Take, for example, this piece, which she calls ‘Jacky’, after her beloved late black lab. The night Jacky passed away, Carman let the grief, love and energy flow through her and come out in the form of this gorgeous necklace. She says it “just felt so right”, and she wears hers all the time.
*All photos in this post from this point on by Stephanie Edmonds/She’s So Eco*)
Necklace available at Green Market, $35.
With its carved been charm and clear quartz on a rustic gold ring, dangling from a fine gold chain, this piece is definitely stunning. But when you know the story behind it, what it means to the maker, it becomes that much more special, doesn’t it? This is why I love handmade, and local artisans. I think these stories really add to the charm and beauty of the work, they go beyond the look and materials and into something deeper, a connection you can only get when you look the maker in the eye and have a conversation with them. When you own (or give) a piece that you know came from someone’s hands, not a factory, that’s something meaningful. Carman and Shine Makes are the true embodiment of this philosophy.
Here’s another, equally lovely version of Jacky: (Click photos to enlarge)
What other jewelry finds are in the Shine Makes treasure box? Glad you asked. My personal favourites (and Carman’s best sellers) are her uniquely beautiful terrarium/wishflower necklaces. Rustic-looking glass orbs are filled with hand-picked moss and a gemstone (such as citrine and amethyst) and dandelion messed harvested from Carman’s own backyard with help from her children. The glass orbs are topped with decorative brass caps, making for a winning combo that spells pure magic. $25 at Green Market. (Click photos to enlarge)
Last but not least, these gorgeous and totally on-trend double terminated gemstone pendants are sure to please. You can’t go wrong with this pretty style- it can be dressed up or down. These pendants look amazing with a long t-shirt and leggings or as an accessory to a dress for a night on the town. I LOVE them. $25, Green Market.
I hope you’ve enjoyed your taste of Shine Makes‘ beautiful jewelry creations, and that you will support this gifted and deserving artisan. Carman is amazing and her work is simply radiant. I own several of her pieces, and they have really stood up. I’m always impressed by how versatile they are and how many compliments I get when I wear them!
Stop by Green Market, and grab some of these necklaces to tick off the ladies on your list! (And don’t forget YOU!). Not local? Click HERE to visit the Shine Makes Etsy shop.
With local love,