Natalia Benson began her first jewelry line in her bedroom in San Diego, California at 20 years old; at the time, she was studying political science and became very interested in women's issues in impoverished countries…a professor told her that poverty was the deepest root of all disrest in the modern world.
It was then when Natalia discovered Kiva, a non-profit that uses the internet and a worldwide network of micro-finance institutions to end poverty. To this end, they provide small loans and improve access to affordable capital for those in need.
Natalia began to make small loans through the organization after researching women's stories in developing countries, and donating whatever profit she could from the sale of her jewelry in San Diego and Los Angeles.
Natalia says she learned the incredible importance of self-sufficient and empowered women: "When a woman is empowered, she will empower others as well; men, other women & her children...this is the truest nature of a woman."
Natalia loves working with Native American inspired materials like horse hair, porcupine quill, various crystals and gem stones.
Having grown up in Arizona, her grandparents were avid collectors of incredible pieces from the Native trading posts in Northern Arizona, Natalia often finds her designs subtly inspired by the sensational pieces that her family still keeps as heirlooms today.
An advocate of utilizing design as a tool for social activism, we are thrilled that Natalia has graciously designed a custom bracelet for Design With Benefits. The "1ove" (one love) bracelet will remind you of the connectivity of all people: that one woman's challenge is everyone's challenge.
All of Natalia's accessories, including the "1ove" bracelets, will have a portion of their proceeds donated through Kiva, to assist women in launching their own small business ventures around the world. As we empower another, we empower ourselves.