Hand-dyed sustainable silk jewelry and woven art, designed, dyed, and crafted in the Hudson Valley.
Emilia Stern is a fiber artist based in Kingston, NY. In between designing and creating her line of hand-dyed silk jewelry, Emilia spends her time working with various other fiber mediums, such as; weaving, sewing, and felting. Using bold colors, a variety of textures, and sustainable practices, Emilia strives to create work that is full of life, color, and comfort.
Story + Process
While studying Studio Art in college, Emilia fell in love with all things fiber from fabric dyeing, to sewing, to weaving and beyond. She worked as a stitcher in the costume shop of the theatre department where she would collect fabric scraps and other materials that she would repurpose into sculptures, installations, and weavings for her art classes. Rescuing of a large amount of silk that was headed for the trash was one of the key factors in how Emilia's journey in making silk jewelry began - that combined with inspiration from Lorna Moffat's 'Silk Unraveled' and a lot of experimentation in technique and design.
Silk is shibori dyed with fiber reactive and natural dyes in small batches. Each cord is made by tearing the silk into small strips, then using a sewing machine to wrap each strip with thread. The pieces are finished by hand sewing each final detail.
All of the silk used in the jewelry is either repurposed, remnants, or Peace Silk made in India. All materials, including beads and metals, are sourced from businesses that support fair trade and/or sustainability. Necklaces and bracelets come in a variety of beautiful colors, dyed in small batches with natural and fiber-reactive dyes. The designs incorporate metal, wood, glass, and ceramic with the hand-crafted and dyed silk cords. The jewelry wears like clothing and gets softer over time. The juxtaposition of the hard and soft materials adds a statement to any outfit.
5% of all sales are donated to Honor the Earth (honorearth.org) - an organization who's mission is "to create awareness and support for Native environmental issues and develop needed financial and political resources for the survival of sustainable Native communities".