Hello, I'm Michaela. A wife, mama to Florence and Theodore, writer and semi-crunchy creative in Vancouver, BC.
I started Mama Gems as I cared for my two children in 2015. My daughter required around the clock medical care and germ protection as she had a very weak respiratory system. I spent most of my time with her and my son at home. It was a very happy place, but after three years, I felt like I needed a creative outlet, apart from my writing.
As my son grew, he started snapping my necklaces and chomping on all my real gems and delicate pendants. The day he scattered beads all over the floor of a brand new coffee shop was the day I put away my delicate jewellery.
But I couldn't find a teething necklace I actually wanted to wear. I wanted something simple and stylish and subdued. Something that didn't scream: teething necklace! No bubblegum pink. No rainbows. No bright colours. So, it turns out, I didn't want a teething necklace after all. I just wanted all my trendy necklaces to be mama friendly.
I wanted to design jewellery specifically for women from the mediums of silicone and wood. And guess what? Little ones love them too because they come in all shapes, textures, colours and sizes. Our necklaces aren't just foe teething. They are for sticky hands, tugging, breastfeeding, bottle feeding, nursing and on-the-go women.
I've curated hard-to-find cord colours, juniper wood pendants, natural wood beads, custom blended silicone colours and lead free, baby friendly painted wooden beads from the EU.
Much of what you see on the site is inspired by the late Florence Marigold Evanow, my precious 3 year old daughter who passed away from complications due to Spinal Muscular Atrophy type 1 (SMA). Florence was my flower child, born in the blue of March. The marigold and aquamarine brand colours symbolize her middle name and her birth stone.
Many of the necklaces are named after little ones who have battled with SMA, too. I've also drawn inspiration from butterflies (her symbol) and the sparkling solar system, because when I look up, I see heaven.
She is all around. Always.
What is SMA?
SMA is a terminal neuromuscular disease. It affected all of the muscles in her body. It's the deadliest genetic disease and takes the lives of countless babies and children. 1 in 6,000 infants are born with SMA, and 1 in 40 people carry the gene responsible for SMA. There is no cure yet, but that’s what we’re fighting for. And we are close!
To read more about SMA, visit www.thegsf.org and see how you can get involved!
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© 2016 Mama Gems
Images by Julie Christine Photography.