A jewellery purchase with purpose
Put on a little feel-good factor everytime you wear Alexis Kate Jewellery
I know that jewellery can often feel like a treat, but buying from Alexis Kate is not just about looking good and feeling good, but also about doing good.
Produced under ethical work conditions, with acceptable hours and fair pay, each piece is handcrafted with care and certified by expert jewellers from around the world.
This initiative is in partnership with National Geographic, who ensures the proceeds go back into further supporting and developing the communities these artists are a part of.
I created Alexis Kate Jewellery to inspire a more conscious choice when it comes to choosing gifts or purchasing jewellery for yourself. You can buy Alexis Kate jewellery knowing it's:
Alexis Kate isn’t just about me (although every purchase does make me do a happy dance!), it’s about making a difference to communities around the world.
And while jewellery will always have a unique significance to the wearer, knowing that you’ve helped support an artist, like the ones below, also makes your jewellery purchase all the more meaningful.
Meet some of the Artists
Congratulations go to Khun Boom for receiving the 2015 Chiang Mai Creative City Design Award!
"I have a passion for life, art and jewelry. I was born in 1979 and grew up in Chiang Mai. I am trained in design and art, and earned a degree in fine art from the Chiang Mai Institute of Technology. From there I moved into the world of design. I used to work for a company that exported fine silver and jewelry from 1998 to 2004. I gained international experience and a greater inspirational base for my design from working there.
In 2004, I was hired by a major UK design house to produce elegant and unique designs to accompany their line of high-fashion clothing and accessories. While working in the UK, a number of design houses picked up my jewelry collections. I am very appreciative of this opportunity for I gained in experience and saw the world.
I never hesitate to take the opportunities that life offers, as I believe that an opportunity is like a lucky bird: it might come just once in your life or maybe a few times and when it does, I am going to do my best to take it. I also believe in honesty. I live my life my life based on being honest; I am honest about my feelings. I am honest to people as I do believe that if you do good things, you will get that back in return."
"My inspiration comes from the natural world around me, such as the texture of tree bark, the fluid lines of a flowing river, flowers, and leaves."
"My full name is Sainamphung Chuntakowsol, but everyone calls me by my nickname, Ying. I'm the second of four siblings, born and raised in Bangkok but always pining for Chiang Mai, where my father and uncle worked. When I finished college, I didn't think twice and moved to Chiang Mai, making my dream come true.
At first I started working as a designer of decorative items, but after a while I fell in love with Lanna, symbol of northern Thailand's culture and way of life. I studied all I could, and absorbed their way of thinking. Now I feel as if I've always lived in Chiang Mai.
After a few years' experience in my family's silk venture, I asked my other siblings, who still worked in Bangkok, to move up to Chiang Mai so we could start on our own. That was in 2001, and I was again working as a designer.
In 2006, we decided to diversify and explore the realm of silver jewelry, because we believe in preserving the silversmith traditions of northern Thailand. I was positively certain that we had the potential to develop great and unique designs that were based on different textures and shapes, and that we could combine them with the beauty of Thai silk."
"Although I majored in business administration and management, I'm a sensitive girl. I love my freedom and I love art. I enjoy working in the garden where the air is fresh and where I can relax and come up with new ideas for my jewelry. I love to travel, and this helps me get ideas for new designs. Sharing with my friends also helps me think creatively.
Leaving Chiangrai and moving in with my aunt was the biggest change in my life. I experienced the big city, studied in a good school, made great friends and learned all about jewelry. It had made my life so much better, and my parents are happy and proud of me. I want to say thank you to my aunt for her kindness.
I would like to thank you, the shoppers, for helping me continue in the work I love. I'll keep on creating new jewelry designs for you"
"I currently work with more than 100 families, including Karen silversmiths, who help me to create handcrafted jewelry."
"When I turned 18, I decided to leave home to seek better opportunities and start a career. It was a difficult period of adjustment because I was outside of my comfort zone, with only a little money to pay for the bus and food for a few days. I was lucky enough to quickly find a job as a maid. I earned very little but it was enough for me to begin saving.
"Once I had enough money to start my own venture, my mother introduced me to one of her friends from the Karen hill tribe who taught me about Karen silver jewelry. I fell in love with the craftsmanship, tradition and the story behind each piece.
"I've immersed myself in silver jewelry since 1986 and people tell me they love my designs. I currently work with more than 100 families, including Karen silversmiths, who help me create handcrafted jewelry. I'm proud to have helped create jobs for them to earn a better living and always thank them for their efforts. Our designs now include contemporary jewelry as well as macramé pieces with beads and silver. All of our jewelry is crafted by hand, and many of the silver beads show traditional Karen flower, fish and geometric motifs.
"I've learned that people have different tastes and this has challenged me to create a variety of designs ranging from modern to minimal to favorites for everyday use."
"Now that our parents have retired, they have more time to visit us. They are so happy that we are carrying on their silver jewelry tradition!"
"My name is Jantana, but people usually shorten it to Na. I'm the youngest of five children. When my brother and sister married, each moved to stay with their new families, but continued to work with jewelry by setting up workshops in their new locations. I visited my sister and her husband in Northern Thailand where they produce silverware in their home. She invited me to help her. Because I really like the region, I resigned at work and moved to Chiang Mai to live with my sister's family.
"She and her husband have 12 silversmiths who collaborate with them. It is a small workshop and they all work together happily like brothers and sisters. One of the women cannot speak, however she is learning to assemble simple pieces, clean the silver, etc. She's been much happier since she started working with us and I'm proud to help her achieve a better life.
"While assisting my sister, I've also been able to develop designs of my own. Every time a shopper admires my work, this makes me very happy and gives me greater motivation. My designs are crafted by hand – almost every step of the process. Sometimes I create a piece of jewelry designed by an artist to display in museums, both inside and outside Thailand. I also create jewelry for new generation designers who want to test their market with small quantities.
"I'm so happy to be living in Northern Thailand and to work at something I enjoy. My sister's family is warm and lovely, and I'm pleased to help her take care of her daughter and son. Now that our parents have retired, they have more time to visit us. They are so happy that we are carrying on their silver jewelry tradition!"
“My medical condition affected me emotionally as well as physically, to a certain extent. Because I was bed-ridden for a long time, my work suffered; and this really depressed me. But I never lost hope. So as soon as I was able to move around, I started working again. I wish to re-establish my work and move ahead in life.
“When I started designing jewelry, encouraged and supported by my husband, my jewelry designs were crafted by other artisans. Previously, I did not have a workshop. Now I have my own workshop where I have a team of 25 people working with me on a full-time basis. Around 10 artisans work part-time for me, especially women from the rural areas of Rajasthan. They work from their own houses on their own schedules. These women usually craft the beaded jewelry. Beads and other necessary materials are supplied to them, along with the designs and combination of beads to be used. They in turn complete the work, and then we collect it. In this way, they work securely in their homes, and it gives them a chance to show their work, their skills and talents. This gives them confidence and brings smiles to their faces, with an opportunity to earn money as well.
“My workshop is divided into two parts. In one part of the workshop, the silver crafting is done; while in the other part, the crafting of beaded jewelry is done. We use traditional methods of crafting silver jewelry like melting, wire work, beading, studded gemstones, etc. My husband and only son assist me in my workshop. The best part about my designs is that they are very pretty, traditional yet stylish and comfortable for everyday use. At times it is really challenging to keep pace with the ever-changing fashion trends, but I certainly look up to this challenge as it gives me new opportunities to learn and design more.
“I have also dedicated some of my time to an NGO in Rajasthan that works with school children and provides medical facilities to elderly people. The NGO is connected with a school where we provide education, books, uniforms and other necessities to the school children. We are also connected with an eye hospital in Jaipur, where we take care of all the expenses required for any cataract operations. We also take care of the post-operative medical requirements of the elderly people who have undergone the operation. I have received the prestigious Bhamashah Award, which is given to individuals/ NGOs for their contributions to society. I hope that I will keep designing new jewelry with even more dedication and get appreciated by everyone,