Human DNA Used to Make DNA Jewelry. Interview with Anna Thachuk.
Rather than jewelry crafted from diamonds and gems, designers can incorporate human DNA into the creation of all kinds of accessories. Jewelry designers hand craft beautiful rings, necklaces, and other keepsakes with breastmilk, placenta, locks of hair, ashes, and other types of DNA. This DNA jewelry has been increasing in popularity recently, but it has actually been around for nearly 2,000 years under the name of "mourning jewelry." This mourning jewelry was worn by Victorian women in the 19th century as a way to mourn the loss of a loved one. DNA jewelry is a great way to cherish your loved ones.
Breastmilk jewelry designer and CEO of KeepsakeMom, Anna Thachuk spoke with the Garden State Woman Education Foundation all about DNA jewelry and the process of behind creating them. She has been handcrafting jewelry and working with various materials including acrylic resin, precious metals, stones, and crystals for over 15 years and has been running her own brand, KeepsakeMom, for over three years. Featured in Parents Magazine, Insider, Care.com, and People Magazine, Thachuk has a wealth of knowledge in the DNA jewelry industry.
- What exactly is DNA jewelry?
"DNA jewelry serves as a keepsake or memento of a memorable time or relationship. DNA jewelry includes breastmilk jewelry, which is KeepsakeMom's specialty and focus. Breastmilk jewelry is a special keepsake for your wonderful newborn, embodying the effort and dedication that moms put into breastfeeding. The jewelry is made with stones created from a mother's breast milk. People love it because It's the most personalized piece of jewelry you can imagine—since every mother's milk is different, every piece of jewelry we make is completely unique. We create rings, necklaces, earrings, and bracelets, and each piece is a memento of the amazing connection a mother forms with her child. It's a beautiful keepsake of such a special time, and it also makes a wonderful gift."
- How did you begin your career as a DNA jewelry designer? What initially inspired you to pursue this path?
"Growing up, I was always interested in beads and sparkly things, and I remember spending hours playing with my mother's costume jewelry. This fascination with all things sparkly never left me, and I went from playing with jewelry as a child to making jewelry for myself to wear as an adult. When I was breastfeeding our second child, I was introduced to breastmilk jewelry. A lady was adding breast milk to acrylic resin, creating breastmilk stones, and she had been doing this for over 10 years. I was fascinated by this. I started playing with my milk, reducing it, trying different techniques to neutralize it, and mixing and casting the dried milk with acrylic resin to create breastmilk stones. That was the beginning and yes, it did help me to commemorate my journeys, all three of them, each of which was deeply profound but each with its own set of struggles."
- What is the process like of creating and designing DNA jewelry?
"Making breast milk into jewelry is a blend of artistry and technique that we've perfected through a meticulous process of trial and error. Through a proprietary curing process, we preserve each mother's breast milk as a powder, then mix it with a clear acrylic resin that we shape into customized stones using special silicone molds. From there, we place the stones into whatever setting the customer has chosen in order to make a completely personalized piece of jewelry to be treasured forever. We can even incorporate additional elements to customize the piece even further—including colors, metallic flakes, names or handprints, and even special powders to make the stones look like pearls or opals. The possibilities are truly beyond what I ever could have imagined when I first started out."
- Why is DNA jewelry becoming the new trend of 2023?"
"DNA jewelry is becoming the new trend of 2023 because it's intriguing. When we tell people that we make breastmilk jewelry, they typically react in one of two ways: they either love it, or they think it's strange. We get that. But for the many who do appreciate the sentiment behind it, breastmilk jewelry becomes an enduring reminder of a beautiful, all-too-fleeting experience. It encapsulates an emotional, even primal, connection and tells a story of deep significance. And due to our meticulous process, it is as hygienic and worry-free as any other piece of jewelry you might own."
For more information, visit keepsakemom.com.
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