I first noticed this line when I was asked to pick out some favorite jewelry looks from the site Spoil Me Fashion. Then I recognized her jewelry on some of my friends and colleagues. Then I saw this bracelet and became obsessed. I have not stopped wearing my Nina Nguyen Endurance Bracelet since I got it last week. What makes this line of jewelry even more special is the story behind it.
As a young girl growing up in war-torn Vietnam, Nina loved to help her uncle, a goldsmith, in his jewelry casting foundry. Working with locally-panned gold, her love for design was sparked. However, when she was a teen, her mother decided to take Nina and her three brothers and younger sister to America. They landed first in a Philippine refugee camp but eventually they secured sponsorship and the family made its way to the States.
Nina’s first few years in America were far from easy. Her mother spoke no English and supported the family by working at fast food restaurants. The family of five lived in a housing project in Florida and Nina worked along with her siblings to help pay the bills. She continued sketching jewelry and daydreaming about the time she spent working with her uncle back in Vietnam. Nina was awarded a college scholarship but was forced to drop out to help her mother. She had a natural aptitude for business and built a successful career in finance. It wasn’t until 2004, when Nina took a life changing journey to India that she realized her calling. While backpacking with her now-husband, she was inspired by the vibrant saris and colorful gemstones embedded in the bold gold jewelry. Afterwards Nina ambitiously decided that she wanted to design jewelry. She launched in Nina Nguyen Designs.
Soon after she launched her business, Nina created Nina Nguyen Designs’ very own Women’s Co-Operative in Vietnam. The women employed at the Co-Op are paid higher than average wages and are given full benefits. They are also provided with professional training for work as well as education on important life skills. Empowered by opportunity, these women are making better lives for themselves and their families. One of Nina’s lifelong goals is to support Vietnam’s neediest. Nina, along with her husband and grandmother are starting the plans for an orphanage that would care for the homeless children of the indigenous Vietnamese in the remote central highlands of Vietnam.
So, don’t you now really want to own a piece of her jewelry? Not only is beautiful, it’s empowering. I know appreciate someone who doesn not forget where she came from. I’m sure you will find a piece from Nina Nguyen’s line that you will love today…and tomorrow.
Visit SpoilMeFashion.com/NinaNguyen here.
– Lauren Dimet WatersSee the Top Ten Summer 2016 Trends for Women Over 40