On Thursday June 7th, the staff and board members of Women With A Vision took a trip to The Bead Shop, located on Magazine Street in New Orleans. Aside from admiring the beautiful jewelry that the shop carries, we also attended a jewelry making class for beginners, a first step in launching WWAV’s new micro-enterprise program. In the class, each of us was provided with a beginner’s kit, which included wires, a set of pliers, string and beads. Co-owner of the shop Georgia, taught the class, providing us with basic techniques for jewelry making. She was full of enthusiasm and frequently offered phrases to help us remember techniques like, “Clamp before you crimp!” These simple techniques, Georgia assured, were key tools in creating beautiful jewelry.
The Jewelry making class provided an opportunity for us to learn a new skill while also partaking in the age old tradition of female bonding, a tradition that has been practiced by women for generations in order to create encouragement and self-esteem building in a safe space. The visit also served as a much needed stress-reliever after the tragic burning of our office.
By the end of the course, we had each had made a necklace, bracelet and a set of earrings. Along with teaching basic techniques, Georgia, also offered us tips for making a business out of this new skill, such as advice on how to get a jewelry making business started and finance strategies. When asked how she felt about teaching the class, Georgia exclaimed, ‘I LOVE teaching this class, making ways for women to become entrepreneurs, and I also love how WWAV stayed committed to attending this class in light of the recent tragic events.”
WWAV looks forward to scheduling another jewelry making class at the bead shop, this time for our clients in the micro-enterprise program. We are so grateful to have such an incredible partner in our work of uplifting and empowering the women in New Orleans.