Monday, October 3, 2011

Don’t know what to do with your old, unwanted jewelry?

How about Radical Jewelry Makeover!

Several Santa Fe area institutions are seeking donations of old, unwanted jewelry for Radical Jewelry Makeover, the community jewelry mining and recycling project happening in Santa Fe, NM this October. Radical Jewelry Makeover has been traveling nationally and internationally to communities since 2007 educating jewelers of all levels about mining and material sourcing issues involved in jewelry making through a fun, fast paced, week-long project. Jewelry students at the Institute of American Indian Arts, Santa Fe Community College, New Mexico State University – Las Cruces and University of Texas – El Paso as well as professional jewelers from the regional community will be transforming donations into radically fresh and responsible jewelry. The project will culminate in an exhibition of these wearable creations displayed at the Wheelwright Museum of the American Indian.

Those tangled chains, unmatched earrings and banged up bracelets sitting at the bottom of jewelry boxes around the Santa Fe area are exactly what jewelry artists participating in Radical Jewelry Makeover – Santa Fe want to get their creative hands on. Until October 15th the non-profit, Ethical Metalsmiths is accepting donations of old, unwanted jewelry at several Santa Fe area locations (see complete list below) for its acclaimed Radical Jewelry Makeover project. Donors will receive discount coupons to apply toward the purchase of a new piece and sales will benefit Ethical Metalsmiths' ongoing efforts to educate and connect people with responsibly sourced materials.

RJM draws attention to the creativity and skills of local jewelry designers, reveals the stories behind our personal collections and encourages re-consideration of our habits of consumption. Currently, materials used in jewelry production are sourced from some of the poorest countries in the world, sacred lands and disputed territories. Often this sourcing comes at a great cost to the environment. Radical Jewelry Makeover VI will offer an informed and creative alternative to traditional mining practices and jewelry production. You can help by donating some of the smallest items in your home, jewelry, for reuse and recycling.

New Mexico has a rich history of jewelry production. Native Americans have been mining turquoise in parts of southwestern North America for up to 1500 years. While turquoise and lead deposits were the focus early on, gold, silver, copper, and zinc have all played major roles in shaping the state of NM as well as the region of Santa Fe. Today, the EPA estimates that hard rock mining is the most toxic industry in the United States. Additionally, Earthworks reports that an estimated 80% of the gold mined each year is used for jewelry, and that a single gold ring leaves behind 20 tons of mine waste. Ethical Metalsmiths seeks to galvanize mining reform efforts by staging an "alternative supply chain."

To donate jewelry of any quality, quantity or material type please download and submit the official project donation form with your jewelry. Donation forms are also available in print at the various drop-off locations.

  • Drop-off Donations will be accepted NOW through Oct. 15 (drop of locations and mail in sites listed below).
  • Jewelry students and professionals will transform the donations between Oct. 23 and Oct. 27, 2011
  • The exhibition at the Wheelwright Museum of the American Indian will take place Oct. 28-Nov. 27, 2011. There will be an opening reception Friday, October 28 from 5-7 PM.


  • Santa Fe Community College, School of Arts & Design, Jewelry Studio (Room 720), 6401 Richards Ave, Santa Fe, NM 87608
  • Institute of American Indian Arts Museum of Contemporary Native Arts, Museum Store, 108 Cathedral Place Santa Fe, NM
  • IAIA, The College of Contemporary Native Arts, Academic and Administration Building Ticket Window, 83 Avan Nu Po Rd. Santa Fe NM, 87508
  • New Mexico State University, Department of Art. DW Williams Hall, Room 100, 1390 East University. Las Cruces, NM 88003-0001
  • University of Texas El Paso, Department of Art, Fox Fine Arts Room 350, El Paso, TX 7996
  • Case Trading Post at the Wheelwright Museum, 704 Camino Lejo, Santa Fe, NM 87505, hours: Mon.-Sat. 10am-5pm, Sun. 1-5pm, 505-982-4636


  • Mail to: Cheri Falkenstien-Doyle, curator, Wheelwright Museum of the American Indian, P.O. Box 5153 / 704 Camino Lejo, Santa Fe, NM 87502


  • Santa Fe Community College, School of Arts & Design - Diane Tintor, Assistant Professor. 6401 Richards Avenue, Santa Fe, New Mexico 87508, 505 428 1446.,
  • Institute of American Indian Arts - Mark Herndon, Faculty Jewelry/Metalsmithing
. 83 Avan Nu Po Road, Santa Fe, NM 87508, 940.453.9449.,
  • Wheelwright Museum of the American Indian - Cheri Falkenstien-Doyle, Curator
 704 Camino Lejo, Santa Fe, NM 87505, 505.982.4636 ext. 104.,
  • Ethical Metalsmiths / Radical Jewelry Makeover - Christina Miller, Director, Ethical Metalsmiths. PO Box 156, College Corner, OH 45003, 513.551.0559.,,
  • Susie Ganch, Co-Project Director, Radical Jewelry Makeover, 415.706.0576.,

For more information about Ethical Metalsmiths visit:

Thursday, June 9, 2011

Thank you for supporting RJM with a donation during the USA - Project Site fundraiser

Susie Ganch and Christina Miller, Radical Jewelry Makeover designers, would like to thank all the generous individuals who gave a donation to our USA Project Site fundraiser. With this support we are enthusiastically preparing for our upcoming installment of RJM that will take place in Santa Fe, NM this fall.

Your support is helping this project to happen! Funds will be applied toward necessary research time for developing informational materials related to the project, securing photo and video documentation that will allow this installment to resonate beyond New Mexico, and traveling expenses for 3 volunteers who previously worked on a Radical Jewelry Makeover and the rental of an apartment for the RJM – Team to live in and work from during the project. You are helping us to build a community of jewelers informed about the issues surrounding our material use and who will continue to search for solutions in the studio to make our jewelry part of a strategy that creates a better world.

Thank you to:

Neal Anderson, Christine Clark, Sonya Clark, G Harker, Nick Tucci, HYART Gallery, Ann Lovell, Sarah Holden, ProVisions Productions, Sandra C Close, Sylvia Richardson, Dennis and Naomi Bahcall, Agnes Ganch, Jennifer Bueno, Amy Tavern, Tracy Featherstone, Ardis Bartle, Erika Miller, Lois Boardman, Gail M Brown, Tom Spleth, Anna, Hepler, Sarah Filzen, Amy Bacon, Tim McCreight, Liz Clark, Caitie Sellers, Tom Joyce, Peggy Jo Donahue, Quirk, Kelly Nedderman, Kathleen W Kennedy, Candace Beardslee, Harry Sellers, Meg Roberts, Whitney Couch, Helen Carnac, Patty Nelson, Arthur Hash, Susan Iverson, Jason Hackett, Gina Pankowski, Sarah Loertscher , Kristine Sack, Mary Cox, Carrie Frye, LTP, Aria Remer, Martha D. Kennedy, Julie Sanford, Rob Jackson, Anne C Dahle, Dan Ganch, Namita Wiggers, Heather Schlupp, Will P., Kiff Slemmons,, Soyeon Kim, Sayumi Yokouchi, Erin Williams, Jen Townsend, LeBrun Frye, M'lou Brubaker Jeweler, Mary Beth Owen-Zdanski, Brigid, Gary Schott, Brittany Hartman, Zumbrumdm, SP, Tim Bowring, Hoss Haley, Shay and Maura Church, Alyssa C Salomon, Rebecca Siswick, wearableJULES, Annie Grimes, Holly Garriott, Kaitlyn Evans, DB & JLK, Erica Stankwytch-Bailey, Adrian Fahrer, Sue Amendolara, Rika Mouw, Rachelle Thiewes, Jessica Turrell, T.J.Bowden, Jessica Keemer, Rod Northcutt, Lindsay Carone, Susan Cummins, Sarah Kate Burgess, Sharon Tonski, Kathleen Browne, Michelle Missner, Gayle Friedman, Curtis H. Arima, Ava Chan, Kari Rinn, Christina Shmigel, Marjorie Simon, Erica Runkles, Ash Hilton, Julia Barello, Lisa Norton, Jenn Wilson, Jaime Pelissier, Santi Matthews, Stephanie Voegele, Kim Thomson, James & Bernadette Unger, Claudia Franzelin, Marc Choyt, Nancy Val Kambouroglos, and several anonymous donors.

Also a special THANK YOU to Wire and Twine for the re-design of the RJM logo.

In total the actual amount that was raised and actually collected was $11,610.00. THANK YOU!
We look forward to keeping in touch.

PS - The new Ethical Metalsmiths website is LIVE and there is a lot of information about Radical Jewelry Makeover on the new site:

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Dear Radical Jewelry Makeover Supporters,

This was the first time in the history of Radical Jewelry Makeover that we reached out for individual support and we are grateful for all of the kind words and generous donations that you have shared and given.

This past weekend we faced a challenging question. Would we realistically be able to raise $16,500 by midnight on May 1st? We are incredibly appreciative for the outpouring of support that we have received from you and we do not want to let you down. Therefore, we have chosen to reduce our fundraising goal on the USA Project Site to $10,500. We’ll still need to rally support during the next 5 days, but by setting a new target we will be more likely to reach our goal and your support will go where you intended it to go.

On our end, we will make up the $6,000 difference by finding creative solutions so that we can cut some items from our budget and by doing additional fundraising. We will seek foundation grants and continue asking for individual support through the Ethical Metalsmiths online donation page, which is always open. Also, the NM edition will generate funds through the sale of Makeover jewelry, which will be used to make up the difference.

It is because of your support that Radical Jewelry Makeover VI – Santa Fe, NM is in a great position to be a truly memorable project. During these last 5 days of fundraising through the USA Artists Project Site it is great to know that we have your support. Thank you. We look forward to celebrating with you on May 2nd after we have reached our goal!! We still have $2,020 to go. Please make a donation today.

In appreciation of your support,

Christina and Susie

Saturday, April 23, 2011

Collecting Radical Jewelry Makeover Testimonials!

Dear Radical Jewelry Makeover Supporters and Past Participants,

We are inviting you to share what it is that you like about the Radical Jewelry Makeover and if you have donated to the upcoming project in Santa Fe, why you did so. We are posting two heartwarming testimonials below. The first is from a supporter and the second a past participant + supporter and both comments were voluntarily shared with us this week.

Feel free to use the comment section here to add your comments or you can use the Ethical Metalsmiths Facebook page. Looking forward to hearing from you! Plus, Click Here to donate.

From Ava Chan - RJM-NM Donor
Congratulations on this upcoming iteration of RJM. It's so wonderful this project has occurred in several cities and influenced the thinking of potential customers and hundreds of metalsmiths to think about their sources of material. Very cool how you've integrated organizing and art! I look forward to seeing the gallery of items that results from Santa Fe.

From Brittany Hartman - student participant during RJM-II - Lancaster, PA.
Hey Christina, I'm just glad I was able to pull some money together to donate, I wish it could have been more, but I know every little bit counts. I'm doing my best to try and get others to donate because I really want you guys to reach your goal. I would love to see the project continue to grow and for others to be able to enjoy the same experience I had when I participated in RJM at Millersville. It's one thing to see what comes out of the project, but its a completely different thing to actually be a part of it and really become aware of ethical sourcing of materials. And besides that, RJM is an amazingly awesome fun project that I wouldn't want anybody to be denied the chance of experiencing!

Ava and Brittany, thanks so much for your support and kind words!

Friday, April 22, 2011

ONLY 9 Days Left to raise $8,150 more for RJM - NM!!

Meeting the halfway point on a major fundraising effort that has already garnered the support of 85 donors is well worth a celebration. Thank you to everyone of you that have given so far. We really couldn't be doing this important work without your support.

Radical Jewelry Makeover - Santa Fe, NM is going to be a fantastic and eye opening, awareness building event for all of us. The project planning is coming along and once the spring semester is over, we look forward to bringing the entire Radical Jewelry Makeover - Santa Fe, NM team together for a "next steps" conference call.

In the meantime we have $8,150 to raise before midnight on May 1st, just 9 days away!

Click here to access the link to a video about the project and to donate (remember that your donations are tax deductible.

The list of 85 supporters below deserve a special thanks for their financial gifts. We are grateful for YOUR generosity and we're confident that because RJM is a celebrated project and because it already has your vote of confidence we can reach our final goal of $16,500! We promise to spend it wisely so that we can get the biggest, longest term benefit from your investment.

Thank you, and have a wonderful weekend.

Neal Anderson, Christine Clark, Sonya Clark, G Harker, Nick Tucci, HYART Gallery, Ann Lovell, Sarah Holden, ProVisions Productions, M Missner, Sandra C Close, Sylvia Richardson, Dennis and Naomi Bahcall, Agnes Ganch, Jennifer Bueno, Amy Tavern, Tracy Featherstone, Ardis Bartle, Erika Miller, Lois Boardman, Allison A. Dahle, Gail M Brown, Tom Spleth, Anna Hepler, Sarah Filzen, Amy Bacon, Tim McCreight, Liz Clark, Caitie Sellers, Tom Joyce, Ava Chan, Peggy Jo Donahue, Quirk, Kelly, Santi Matthews, Kathleen W Kennedy, Candace Beardslee, Harry Sellers, Meg, Whitney Couch, Helen Carnac, Patty Nelson, Arthur Hash, Kim Thomson, Susan Iverson, Jason Hackett, Gina Pankowski, Sarah Loertscher, Kristine Krissy Sack, Mary Cox, Carrie Frye, LTP, Aria Remer, Martha D. Kennedy, Julie Sanford, Rob Jackson, Anne C Dahle, Dan Ganch, Namita Wiggers, Stephanie Voegele, Heather Schlupp, Will P., Kiff Slemmons, Soyeon Kim, Sayumi, Erin Williams, Lisa Norton, Jen Townsend, LeBrun Frye, M'lou Brubaker, Mary Beth Owen-Zdanski, Brigid, Gary Schott, Brittany H, zumbrumdm, SP, Tim Bowring, Hoss Haley and seven anonymous donors.

Friday, February 25, 2011

Only 65 Days left to raise a total of $16,500!

Dear Radical Jewelry Makeover followers and fans,

This is the first time in the history of Radical Jewelry Makeover that we are asking everyone that thinks RJM is a good or worthwhile or interesting or curious project to lend some support. The embedded video will give you a good idea of what we will do with your generous gifts. Check it out, share it and if you can spare some change to donate to this project we would be grateful. Any amount is appreciated and "crowd sourcing" relies on many, many donors giving small sums. Six generous people have donated so far and want to see this effort succeed. If we don't reach our goal, everyone gets their money back and the project doesn't get funded. We'd love to raise a one-thousand dollars this weekend. Can you help?
Just in case the video embedding doesn't work, here's the link to the site.

Thank you! Christina and Susie

Monday, February 21, 2011

Radical Jewelry Makeover and You!

Dear Friends, Former RJM Participants, and EM Supporters,

We are pleased to announce that Radical Jewelry Makeover, our international collaborative community jewelry mining and recycling project, has been selected to participate in a new online community of America’s finest artists called USA Projects.

USA Projects showcases many creative projects of active, contemporary artists in one online community. The site is a unique form of social networking encouraging artists from a variety of disciplines to engage each other and the public and it also provides an easy to use fundraising platform for artists to personally share projects they need additional funding to complete.

The invitation from United States Artists has come at a great time for Radical Jewelry Makeover! As many of you already know our next and sixth edition of the project will take place in Santa Fe, New Mexico this October. The hosts, the Wheelwright Museum of the American Indian, Institute of American Indian Arts and Santa Fe Community College – School of Art and Design are generously covering our travel expenses and a small stipend, but this isn’t enough to cover the true project expenses.

We are using our first USA Projects fundraising opportunity to raise $16,500 for Radical Jewelry Makeover VI: Santa Fe, NM and we need your help to make it happen! The thing about USA Projects and similar “crowd sourcing” platforms like Kickstarter is that if we don’t reach our goal of $16,500 you get your money back and the project doesn’t get funded! Oh, and ALL donations are tax-deductible.

The best way to learn what we plan to do with your generous support is to watch our four-minute video and read the official project proposal HERE!

We are ready and willing to thank you for your donation with several perks (like fabulous RJM jewelry from past projects), Check it out!

If you read this blog entry and can give, please do so sooner rather than later. We only have 69 days left to raise $16,500 starting TODAY! That's $239.13 per day until this opportunity runs out!

If you can’t support the project financially, please help spread the word and tell your friends about it. You can follow-us on the site, write to us, sign-up to follow our progress and see the work of other talented and dedicated artists.

Thank you for your support and interest,
Susie Ganch and Christina Miller, Directors, Radical Jewelry Makeover

Monday, January 24, 2011

Radical Jewellery Makeover in Melbourne, Australia!

Suse Scholem, Honours student in Jewellery at Monash University in Melbourne, Australia is putting together an independently organized Radial Jewellery Makeover with Ethical Metalsmiths support.

The two-day event (Jan. 29th and 30th) is taking place at the Loophole Community Art Centre in Thornbury and is open to anyone interested in trying their hand at making new jewellery from old while learning about some of the material sourcing issues associated with jewelry. Jewellery donations can be made up until the start of the event. Find out more about the event here!

Suse attended the "Jewellery Practice as a Site for Enquiry" in Melbourne (Aug. 2010) where Radical Jewelry Makeover directors, Susie Ganch and Christina Miller presented about the project and the work of Ethical Metalsmiths. Suse has decided to take on organizing the first of what will be several Melbourne area Makeovers. We are supporting these Mebourne projects because Suse is maintaining the core values of the project and is contributing some great new ideas. We look forward to working with her and together growing the potential of the project to be organized by individuals or groups in other locations. The Melbourne projects will include the sharing of information about metal and gemstone mining as well as jewellery making skills and design strategies for using old jewellery.

Radical Jewelry / Jewellery Makeover is cultivating an international community of jewellers and jewellery supporters willing to look at the dark side of jewellery, challenge it and use it to communicate a new set of values. We hope that everyone wearing RJM jewellery is willing to tell the story of the piece, spreading the ideas and values the work represents.

Along those lines, in a video of appreciation for Ethical Metalsmiths' work, Gabriel Craig highlights what he has done since hearing a lecture by Ethical Metalsmiths co-founders Christina Miller and Susan Kinglsey.

Let us know if you are doing something interesting to grow the global grassroots community of Ethical Metalsmiths'.