Inspirations

Sharing the Rough Jewelry Brings the Same-Name Film to Life, and to Your Own Collection

Ring in 14k yellow gold with rough and faceted mint garnet, $1,700 at K.Jon’s

Pocatello, Idaho. Jan. 7, 2019. Like many in the industry, Brecken and Jonathan Farnsworth were moved when they watched the 2015 documentary Sharing the Rough. The owners of Parlé Jewelry Designs were also friends with producer Orin Mazzoni, who has family in the jewelry industry, so when he expressed interest in a collection that would help bring the film to life, the Farnsworths—whose company motto is “Stones That Speak”—knew they could accomplish the task. The pair were already offering stones—including myriad colors of garnet—from East Africa, so the challenge would be in telling the story of the stones in a more specific way as well as designating a portion of sales to a charity that would ensure the funds would benefit the communities mining the gems.

To advertise, contact Nicole@thejewelrybook.com.

The Farnsworths became aware of the Devon Foundation, a charity organized by jewelry store owner Nancy Schuring of Devon Fine Jewelry in Wyckoff, N.J., who had visited East African mine sites and even appeared in the film! Schuring was already funneling funds for education and meals to those living in mining regions, so they elected to give their collection proceeds to the Devon Foundation to distribute. One of the beneficiaries? The Kitarini Primary School located in Tanzania near the Kenyan border. The school serves the children of the area’s Masai tribe. Five percent of wholesale dollars of the Farnsworth’s Sharing the Rough jewelry collection benefits Kitarini, helping to provide meals, books, uniforms, and more to elementary-age students. Retailers who carry the collection are encouraged to match monies. For a firsthand look at Devon’s efforts, the Farnsworths visited the school in September, afterwards pledging “to give $15,000 to the Foundation,” explains Brecken.

Jonathan and Brecken Farnsworth visited the Kitarini Primary School in September to see how proceeds from sales of their Sharing the Rough jewelry collection would be utilized.
Jonathan and Brecken Farnsworth visited the Kitarini Primary School in September to see how proceeds from sales of their Sharing the Rough jewelry collection would be utilized.

To advertise, contact Nicole@thejewelrybook.com.

As for the Sharing the Rough jewelry collection, which is sold by retailers nationwide, it features mixes of uncut and faceted gems to reveal the transformation of the stones. Collection-wide, styles have a hand-hewn look and are carved in wax for authenticity. Gems include Lotus garnet (a pink stone) as well as rhodolite, mandarin, tsavorite, and mint Merelani garnets. “We’re expanding offerings and increasing style selections for 2019,” adds Brecken. Retail prices start at $595.

Want to learn more about Parlé’s involvement? Check out their podcast Gem Junkies on iTunes and queue up episode no. 11, “Journey to the ‘Rough’, What Happens in Tanzania,” when they had just returned from Africa in September.

Necklace in 14k yellow gold with cabochon-cut Indicolite tourmaline, $18,600; Contact  jonathanf@parlegems.com for purchase
Necklace in 14k yellow gold with cabochon-cut Indicolite tourmaline, $18,600; Contact jonathanf@parlegems.com for purchase
Drop earrings in 14k yellow gold with purple garnets and diamonds, $1,300 at K.Jon’s

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