31 Bits (+ Giveaway!)

Over the next few weeks, I am going to be featuring some of my favorite local (Southern California) companies. I hope you enjoy!

Today I’m giving away one of the prettiest necklaces. The Camellia in Mint by 31 Bits.

I’m sitting here looking at it while typing this post, and ladies, it’s pretty much the greatest pale green-blue color ever.

I hope you will enter the giveaway, but most importantly, I hope you will read about this incredible company and check out the 31 Bits website.

Here are the girls behind 31 Bits.

Gorgeous, right? Well, these ladies are far more than a gaggle of pretty faces.

When Kallie Dovel traveled to Uganda in the summer of 2007, she met a few women that made paper bead jewelry. After spending time in their homes and hearing their stories, Kallie knew there had to be a way to give opportunities these women. She brought a box of jewelry back to the U.S., and spent the next year finishing her degree and dreaming up the concept of a development organization. She brought a few friends on board and her ideas quickly evolved into 31 Bits. The girls traveled back to Uganda in August 2008, and selected six women to begin buying jewelry from on a monthly basis.

Fast forward 4 years, and 31 Bits now works with 108 women in Gulu, Uganda. How it works is that 31 Bits purchases jewelry from each woman on a monthly basis, providing them with an immediate, consistent, and fair income. Each piece of jewelry is handmade using 100% recycled paper and other local materials. By selling these products in the international market, they are able to generate a profit that is used to continue purchasing jewelry, as well as provide the women with numerous development programs (English lessons, finance training, health education, vocational training), equipping them to develop a career and attain social equity on a local level. 31 Bits is committed to working with each woman until she has graduated from their program and can attain a sustainable mean of income within her own community.

Here are some of the women that are part of the program.

Pretty incredible, and let’s not neglect to mention how beautiful the necklaces (ranging between 26 and 54 dollars) are themselves. The beads are made from recycled paper that comes from old posters, magazines, fliers and textbooks, and then are sealed with a non-toxic, water-based varnish. Depending on the size of the necklace, one woman can make between 5 and 15 necklaces in a week.

I want them all, and I’m telling you, it’s much easier to buy a new necklace (or a few) when I know that my purchase is helping these women achieve their dreams. The lovely ladies at 31 Bits sent me the Aurora, and it’s quickly become one of my most worn necklaces.

If you would like to be entered into the giveaway for the Camellia necklace, please visit the 31 Bits website and then leave a comment on this post before Saturday, March 31st at 6pm PST. I will announce the winner on Facebook on Sunday the 1st, so be sure to like my page!

Also, the ladies at 31 Bits are offering 20% off your online order with the code WHOORL20 from now until April 4th. FABULOUS. (The Rockhopper is going to be my next purchase. Wait, no, maybe the Meadowsweet…the Windflower? HOW AM I SUPPOSED TO PICK?)

Happy necklace browsing!

  • Nicole L.

    March 28, 2012 at 9:56 am

    Amazing company and beautiful necklaces!

  • brandi

    March 28, 2012 at 10:00 am

    so great! love the company and the styles.

  • Katie

    March 28, 2012 at 10:02 am

    I am so excited to through my first 31 bits dinner party! What a great way to connect with other women in my life and help women to achieve success.

  • Lauri

    March 28, 2012 at 10:02 am

    Thanks for introducing me to this awesome company! Love the mission as well as the jewelry.

  • Mande Calhoun

    March 28, 2012 at 10:02 am

    Got one for Christmas and I can’t wait to get some new ones for Spring weddings.

  • laziza

    March 28, 2012 at 10:04 am

    Love every single thing about this.

  • Amelia

    March 28, 2012 at 10:04 am

    Lovely jewelry. Beautiful mission.

    Unfortunately, I must acknowledge I’m disappointed that such an awesomely progressive company would choose to use only white models. There’s a sting there.

  • Life As Wife

    March 28, 2012 at 10:05 am

    I have never seen the picture of the women behind 31 Bits! How empowering to be passionate and beautiful!!

    Love the mint color for Spring!

  • Blair Digiacomo

    March 28, 2012 at 10:05 am

    Love 31 Bits! They have the such beautiful jewelry and the company promotes a wonderful cause!!

  • Kat Harris

    March 28, 2012 at 10:14 am

    What I love about 31Bits is how they not only are investing into and empowering women stateside and overseas, they are offering a quality well-made product. And let’s be real: the Bits girls are pretty rad!

  • Katie

    March 28, 2012 at 10:15 am

    Yes Please!

  • Ashley

    March 28, 2012 at 10:18 am

    I love 31 bits! This is such an amazing company! I love showing people my bracelets and hopefully one day I will own a necklace!

  • Jen F

    March 28, 2012 at 10:22 am

    So lovely! I would love these!

  • Melissa

    March 28, 2012 at 10:24 am

    This is awesome. Beautiful jewelry. And I love what they are doing to help the women, aside from just the income, to make their lives better.

  • Mama in the City

    March 28, 2012 at 10:25 am

    What a really great story. Love to win this!