Fashion For a Cause – The Elephant Collection
With the focus on global preservation, cultural awareness, and trying to live a more “green” life that most people aspire to accomplish today, a jewelry company has moved forward to try to balance beauty with accountability.
Enter Elizabeth Gilbert, popularly known worldwide as the author of “Eat,Pray, Love,” a memoir of sorts that has been highly acclaimed by critics everywhere. Her name engenders a cult following, a standing recognition on the New York Times Bestseller List, and a wildly successful movie with based on her encounters.
Now on to a new calling, Gilbert has branched out into creating jewelry-but with a purpose.
Her line is called the Elephant Collection from Shompole. Each piece is handcrafted by local artisans in Kenya, so the purchase of any of her items plays a part in enriching local jewelry makers in Africa. That fact alone would be a worthy cause to champion, but the line goes even a step farther.
Ten percent of proceeds from each of her pieces goes toward keeping parentless elephant babies alive via the David Sheldrick Wildlife Trust, one of the few charities that endorses helping small elephants. The foundation has developed a successful formula for baby elephants in need of milk through decades of trial-and-error, and monies from the jewelry purchases go toward supplies needed to keep the babies growing strong, as well as providing veterinary and psychological care.
Upon helping the babies reach maturity, each juvenile elephant is transplanted into the Tsavo National Park, an 8,000 square mile protected reserve for the elephants to spend their lives roaming.
The line is a collection of bracelets, rings, and pendants; the materials used for creating the jewelry are mostly cow bone, precious gems, and 18 karat gold. Each piece Gilbert hand-stamps with a delicate gold elephant, in homage to the creatures that helped give her inspiration for her new project.
She says that she found inspiration for doing the project when she visited the elephant orphanage on the outskirts of Nairobi, claiming the experience will “stay with her forever.”
A link to the online store can be found here:
If you would like to contribute to the cause of orphaned elephants in another way, you can foster a baby elephant via the David Sheldrick Wildlife Trust, found here: