Thursday, August 14, 2008
SHIANA provides rare jewelry items and jewelry accessories to our customers. Each item is chosen because it is a masterpiece of unique quality, and has been crafted by people who put effort and care into every element of the piece. We are committed to the quality of our products and the manner in which we deliver them.
No less than one full decade confirm our expertise in Thai Karen Hill Tribe Silver. SHIANA has dedicated all our resources to popularize Karen Silver from the creation of the first Karen Silver bead. Through our close work with the Karen Silversmiths, the relationship and level of expertise we have established is unmatched. A SHIANA Expert is able to distinguish the work of our Karen silver smiths from imitations and replicas at a glance. Each piece, print, and style has been through our quality assurance process. Our experts are also trained to know all types of tribal silver including Bali, Cambodian (Khmer), and the various styles and markings of Indian silver. In 1995, as the first of today’s Karen Silver pieces were produced, SHIANA created the "Limejuice Standard" -- where we utilize the fact that the acidity in lime is strong enough to clean 100% silver to a shine while still maintaining its oxidized state. This Limejuice Standard has become the preferred way of cleaning Hill Tribe Silver.
Between 2003-2004, SHIANA has also created a method of plating Karen Silver with 24K Gold. This vermeil standard for Karen silver is based on our knowledge of old Thai gold plating methods and the chemical compositions of pure silver. SHIANA is committed to educating the public. If a question arises, please do not hesitate to contact a SHIANA Expert.
SHIANA is dedicated to preserving the culture of our craftsman and artisans. In making our jewelry, we will never compromise their safety or lifestyle. As our business grows, we also hope to increase funding to our many planned projects for the Karen Hill Tribe Villagers of northern Thailand.
Take a moment to visit the Shiana Blog - Karen Village http://karenvillage.blogspot.com/
Karen Village is a Shiana blog about a very special group of hill tribe silversmiths.
Shiana's Mission Statement
The World and Us: Community Mission Statement
The Hill Tribe Silver Program Local Karen artisans who are directly employed by SHIANA make SHIANA Silver. This is standardized silver and is guaranteed to be made from 99.9% pure silver. It has also passed our strict quality assurance and is unique to only SHIANA. Our artisans receive more than the average minimum wage. Through respect and dialog, we ensure not only the survival of this magnificent art, but also the long term welfare and health of our artisans and their families. When buying Karen Hill Tribe Silver or SHIANA Silver, you are ensuring that the next generation of artisans will survive to preserve the works of their forefathers.
Making silver has become a profitable advantage for the Hill Tribe families and an invaluable alternative to growing illicit crops or slash-and-burn farming. SHIANA funds education programs. In association with other charity organizations in Thailand, we wish to see an end to the exploitation of the villagers. Often times, entire villages can be seduced into growing illicit drugs in order to survive. There are also cases of individual families allowing their children to be sent away to large cities for factory work. Many times, they are deceived by the employer, and girls are set to work for the prostitution industry.
As part of our community goal, SHIANA continues to fund the building of schools and training facilities for the villagers. Schools allow us to educate the children closer to their homes. In many cases, children walk miles to the schoolhouse, if there is one available at all. Training facilities are aimed at helping older villagers. Through these facilities, we hope to help the Karen gain experience and employment. The courses range from simple education such as better farming techniques and chicken rearing to mechanic work and tourism hospitality. SHIANA seeks to improve our business in outstanding ways, but we will never compromise the lifestyle or safety of our artisans.
Your Role in Our Mission
SHIANA focuses on sustainability. However, that sustainability also comes from reliability. No man is an island. Every purchase you make is a vote of confidence. Your continued support gives us motivation to fight for the rights of our artisans, as well as our own rights to remain competitive in an industry that does not always welcome fair trade producers.
Monday, August 11, 2008
GALATEA - Jewelry By Artist
Just a quick tutorial for those of you who aren't sure what a “cultured” pearl is...
- most pearls are cultured – even Tahitians & South Seas
- culturing occurs when a mollusk is “seeded”
- most Ocean farms use beads made of shell
- most Freshwater farms use a piece of mantle tissue
- the bead or tissue is “planted” under the mantle – next to the shell
- the mollusk – sensing a foreign object – immediately starts coating the irritant with nacre...rolling it around and coating it until it is smooth
By far the most outstanding addition to the gem world was premiered at JCK Las Vegas 2007. Chi Huynh of Galatea (Jewelry by Artist), located in San Dimas, California, is best known for his Diamond in a Pearl, in addition to his carved Akoya and Tahitian pearls. This year, Chi introduced carved black pearls, exposing the pearl's nucleus. The surprise is that the nucleus is NOT Mother-of-Pearl.
Chi took that idea to Tahitian pearl farmers who told him that this kind of pearl could not be grown in the French Polynesian Islands. Undaunted by this turn of events, he took the black lipped oyster to waters off the shores of Vietnam. After persuading experts in implantation that his idea could actually work, he attempted to grow black pearls using citrine, amethyst, and turquoise bead nuclei.
Just imagine a carved black pearl over a citrine, amethyst or turquoise nucleus! ....OR... a diamond in a pearl!
ABOUT GALATEA USA – THE COMPANY
Galatea is Chi Galatea Huynh
My inspiration comes from nature. I toss a pebble into a pond and watch the ripples gently and pleasantly hypnotize me for hours. I pick up a shell and watch the spiral design travel into my eyes. I watch a child hold a flower innocently in her hands as she watches a butterfly dance in the garden. At these moments nature shares and reveals to us the secret of natural beauty. To me, art is like music, the musician understands key, melody, composition, etc. This enables him to create music rather than noise. Likewise, I have come to understand line, light, shape, color, texture, and the mystic harmony of their relationship in creating music for the eyes. I believe natural beauty is not just based on culture, intellect, or the conditions of life alone. Universal beauty does exist and you can find it in your smile.
Craftsmanship Each design is hand sketched, sculpted, detailed and finished to the highest standard of an old world Artisan, combined with new inventive techniques developed at Galatea.
Metal We formulate our metal to ensure its purity. All jewelry designs are available in 14 karat yellow or white gold . 18 karat and Platinum are available for The Yes Collection only.
Philosophy See the leaves on the vines Seasons changes like life What is truth and pure Will endure the test of time.Galatea carefully chooses is authorized retailers, based in part on their location and clientele. We expect our authorized retailers to use their best efforts to preserve and enhance the image of our originality, artistry and the good will associated with our name and philosophy. “GALATEA” was a statue that came to life, which arrived from Greek Mythology. As an artist, I want my work to come to life.
Trademark Patent #7062940 All Diamond in a Pearl designs come with a certificate to ensure its craftsmanship and authenticity and packaged in a cherry wood jewelry box.
Galatea USA - http://www.diamondinapearl.com