The Power of Jewellery - Empowerment, Ethics, & Sustainability with Olga Kassian


Olga Kassian, founder of the ethical jewelry business, Wonther, discusses the important power of beautiful jewelry pieces to inspire, empower, and give meaning to people.

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Olga Kassian

Olga was born in a small Ukrainian village and moved to Portugal very young, but it was New York City that introduced her to fashion. Coming from a harsh reality, fashion entrepreneurship wasn’t in her plans. With an engineering background and after living in NYC and meeting inspiring personalities in the fashion industry, she realized things could be done differently – in a way that’s aligned with her core values and beliefs. At 22 years old, Olga founded Wonther, an ethical and sustainable jewelry brand, gradually becoming an advocate for responsible businesses.

Olga Kassian

Olga was born in a small Ukrainian village and moved to Portugal very young, but it was New York City that introduced her to fashion. Coming from a harsh reality, fashion entrepreneurship wasn’t in her plans. With an engineering background and after living in NYC and meeting inspiring personalities in the fashion industry, she realized things could be done differently – in a way that’s aligned with her core values and beliefs. At 22 years old, Olga founded Wonther, an ethical and sustainable jewelry brand, gradually becoming an advocate for responsible businesses.


[00:43] What ethics, sustainability and inclusivity mean to Olga

[13:05] Why people come to Wonther

[15:24] How the market of jewellery is like right now

[27:47] Finding the confidence of starting your own business


Content Warning: Nonconventional Show is created for adult audiences only. Our show notes include content references and other helpful info. Listener discretion is advised.

Olga talks about the meaning of ethics, sustainability and inclusivity in her business, the story behind inclusivity, what the customers need from Wonther, how the jewellery market is like right now and, how she chooses her jewellery. She also shares some insights on the different crystals for different occasions, her career transformation and the person who inspired her to open her mind.

Olga Kassian was born in a small Ukrainian village and moved to Portugal very young, but it was New York City that introduced her to fashion. Coming from a harsh reality, fashion entrepreneurship wasn't in her plans.
With an engineering background and after living in NYC and meeting inspiring personalities in the fashion industry, she realized things could be done differently in a way that's aligned with her core values and beliefs.
At 22 years old, Olga founded Wonther, an ethical and sustainable jewelry brand, gradually becoming an advocate for responsible businesses.



Olga Kassian and Ela Crain


Ela Crain  00:00

Welcome to Nonconventional, where we interview unconventional people. My name is Ela Crain, and today we have Olga Kassian with us. Olga was born in a very small village in Ukraine. She moved to Portugal when she was young, and she studied engineering in Portugal. Later on, she moved to New York and started her own jewellery business, Wonther. Wonther is a very successful jewellery business. Their focus is on ethics, sustainability, and inclusivity. Welcome, Olga.


Olga Kassian  00:32

Thank you so much, Elaine. Thank you so much for this wonderful introduction.


Ela Crain  00:36

You're welcome. Can you please tell us first of all about Wonther a bit, because we said that you are very much focused on ethics, sustainability, and inclusivity. What do these values mean to you?


Olga Kassian  00:51

As you mentioned, I was born in Ukraine. And while my parents were still growing up, they were in the Soviet Union. So they associated a lot of business and fashion related to higher powers and maybe even corruption, because that's how it was back then. And even nowadays, a little bit. So that was kind of the message they taught me. And while growing up, I always thought that business wouldn't be for me, because I didn't come from a rich family, I didn't have the connections. And I always knew, I have to study, I have to do a safe path in order to have a safe future.

When I moved to New York, that kind of opened a new world to me. I started looking at business and fashion in a different way. And I understood that if we make things the right way, they can actually be very beautiful. And they can be the opposite of all those things that I learned while growing up. So that's why when I decided I want to have my own business, I want to get into fashion. I knew l have to do it the right way. I knew it had to be ethical. I knew it had to be sustainable because there's even no other way nowadays. And I knew it had to respect, reinforce each one of those things that I believe in. So that's why Wonther was founded with those pillars. That's why we respect humans. That's why we guarantee the right working conditions. That's why we have that set of values that are non-negotiable for us.


Ela Crain  02:30

I know that you do things very differently. For example, you don't use plastic in your products and you have a silver swap programme. I think if anyone brings on one silver, they can get a 20% voucher for their purchase. Can you tell us some other things around sustainability that are important to you and your brand?


Olga Kassian  02:51

So when we define Wonther as a sustainable brand, there are a few checkmarks that we do. First of all, it had to do with our provider. So we did good research on who could work with us. And because they had to meet those criteria. And we found only one factory, a small factory in Portugal, that is actually certified by the Responsible Jewellery Council, and they are the leading authority in the jewellery supply chain, worldwide. They do audits on the entire supply chain. And they make sure that there is no child labour, people are paid fair wages, the environmental impact is reduced with the minimum, they are making sure that there are no criminal activities, which is also very, very associated with gold and silver mining, unfortunately.

So they are an entity that guarantees and our factory is certified by them. And we assumed the compromise of only working with them in Portugal. So in terms of business, this thing's a bit counterintuitive to only have one provider. It's a bigger risk. It's more expensive for us, obviously, we produce everything in Portugal just with that one person, because we want the standards to be met. So in terms of being competitive, it's a bigger risk. But in terms of meeting our criteria, you know, when we wait for each one of them the ethical and sustainable values, they wait for more for us. So that's one thing regarding our pieces. So each one of those spaces is certified by these values.

Then the second step was our packaging. The traditional jewellery often comes in plastic packaging. Yeah, it's essentially plastic. So we really didn't want to do that. So we went for recycled paper. We went for little cotton dust bags, we made these little changes that actually make the difference. And then we wanted to work with recycled materials because even though all of the supply chain is certified, I know for sure that the only way to make it 100% sustainable is to recycle these materials. So this is not ideal. And therefore, we launched the programme, which was the one you were mentioning, it is called love, give back repeat. It's not called Silver swapped, I mean, nobody does in practice.

So it's like loving your piece, giving it back, and then repeating the process. What we do is that if you have like, a silver piece that you don't use any more inches in the drawer, and by chance, he doesn't have any emotional meaning to you, you can give it to us. And we will give you a 20% discount on any of our pieces, and then we will recycle it and reintroduce it into our production. So our goal is to create a circular economy here. And actually, my biggest dream for water would be to one day only use precious metals that are donated or sold to us by our customers, that would be wonderful, then I would be sure where it comes from. Yeah, and that it really had needed a second life.


Ela Crain  06:04

Because mining is not a very friendly process.


Olga Kassian  06:08

It is terrible. It has a huge environmental impact. Once you mined a zone, nothing can grow there anymore. There's high pollution, usually, those big corporations get away with it. And it's very, very critical. There is actually a very interesting commentary, which is called the shadow of gold. We did a collaboration with the Canadian company that filmed it. So if anyone is interested in watching it, the shadow of gold is fantastic to get deeper into this issue of gold mining and its impact.


Ela Crain  06:39

Yeah, because mostly you think they're just taking out the precious metals, and that's it. But there's a huge impact.


Olga Kassian  06:47

Absolutely. They destroy landmark, then there's like river pollution, then also the extra mining chemicals that they need to extract these metals are very, very polluting.


Ela Crain  06:58

is that the problem with the farming, you mentioned that there can be often no more farming done in that land


Olga Kassian  07:04

Yeah, because they pollute the land, and therefore nothing else can grow there. Of course, that's not the only way. And that's where the responsible jewellery Council intervenes, and they monitor all these things because there is a different way to do things. The problem is that these big corporations don't want to lose profits. And then don't comply with these criteria.


Ela Crain  07:26

Yeah. So that covers the kind of the three values you have sustainability, inclusivity, and ethics. What do you mean exactly with inclusivity?


Olga Kassian  07:37

I remember acknowledging I was a feminist, when I was about 16 years old, something like that. I heard Emma Watson speak, and I was like, Wow, this makes so much sense. I remember hearing the word feminist, and we were all back then like, I'm not sure what does it mean, I didn't say it out loud. But then I heard her speech at the United Nations, I think something like that. And it really clicked and it made sense to me. And that's when I really started questioning things. And I really started discussing the subject and thinking about it. And while I was growing up, I noticed things like, whenever I look at the top, even starting with the student associations, because that's where we start, the majority of the leaders were male. And then I look at the ladder to the top and students, associations, departments, companies, the government, the main leaders are always male.

Obviously’ as we all do, I started questioning myself. Why does this happen? I'm pretty sure we are not nor less capable than they are? Absolutely, we're not. And that's an issue of education. That's an issue of devaluing certain measures while we are growing up, we are not incentive to aim as high to be as ambitious. That's sometimes even seen as a bad trait for a woman. Right?


Ela Crain  09:05

Ambitious. We never say that for him.


Olga Kassian  09:07

Yeah. So that's kind of how I got into this state of mind. So I wanted to put this into our jewellery. Because if we put enough women at the top, in order to have a presentation, and if we also give an example, I think more women will feel empowered to follow the same path. Because whenever we see someone similar to us, somewhere where we want to be it makes us believe that we can also get there. instead of if they're all different from us. We're like, okay, maybe I don't belong there. What am I doing? So the presentation is really, really important and telling people that they can do it. In this case, women especially are very important.

So I wanted to put this into Wonther. It's a bit far fetched, but it all comes together. That's why jewellery came up because jewellery has done special ability to hold our values, holding our memories. it has meaning either we give it to them, or it has an assigned meaning since it is created. So we created pieces of jewellery that have a special message. And a lot of those messages are once with empowerment, that like, own it on who you are, or grab it, like grab the opportunities that you have in life.


Ela Crain  10:27

So I want to actually dig a little deeper in here because the word inclusivity is a very kind of precious word to me, because it's not just about empowering a certain group of people, but it's very inclusive. And I'm just curious if there is a story behind this or if this was very consciously selected as a word because it could be also spoken for underrepresented genders and other communities. Do you have any works around that? And is this word really linking to those areas? Or is it my own making?


Olga Kassian  11:02

As we evolve, we grow and we learn new things. And I think the world is evolving in terms of inclusivity also, and therefore we're learning. As the world evolves, therefore, we starting to do some sort of introspection and thinking, Okay, do we need to upgrade, like at this level? Or do we need to open our view? And we figured that yes, we do want to be more inclusive. That's why we kind of switch


Ela Crain  11:33

That's why you kind of not switched maybe what you in a kind of expanded


Olga Kassian  11:38

I am not sure how to put it yet, because we didn't really do that transition yet. That's fine. I'm struggling a little bit with this part of the conversation because it was really, really focused on women. And we are starting to open the conversation because anyone can wear our jewellery there are more genders than we that know. We started to meet these people, we started to do our own talks, we then we started to get to know their reality. And we realised that we were being too narrow. And that's what I'm trying to say that we are growing as we discover these ramifications. And it is just way more than black and white.


Ela Crain  12:15

Yeah, absolutely. The word inclusivity is such a beautiful word. And that there's actually no limit no barrier, but it's like everyone is welcome. So do you see once a growing towards that direction?


Olga Kassian  12:29

Yes, thank you for putting it in such a beautiful way. Yes, we want to include everyone, and we don't have to understand everything to accept it. At this point in my life. That's what I believe in.


Ela Crain  12:46

Yeah, that's beautiful. Because you said sometimes we give meaning to jewellery. And sometimes the jewellery has its meaning like wearing a cross already has a meaning. But then I can say that, Oh, I love this, this ring, because it's given to me by my grandparents etc. Do people come to you generally, because of your philosophy and values, you know, already kind of aware of your values, and ready to buy a meaningful piece from you, or are there also random kind of customers who just say, Oh, I just like your style, it doesn't matter. Actually, the sustainability aspect doesn't bother me, but I really like your style.


Olga Kassian  13:25

Curiously, both happen. However, the people that do come to us because of our values, and because of the meaning of our pieces are way, way more than those that come just on for the design. Even though those that come for the design, when they discover the whole world behind it. That's also a plus, they afterwards usually come to us and they're like, Oh, I just like to apiece and I discovered your philosophy and they undiscovered the meaning of your pieces. And it made me fall in love more with the brand of with the particular jewel that they were looking to buy. And it also happens quite frequently people coming because they were looking for something particularly sustainably made. And ethical. That's probably one of the main factors that people actually come to us. They're like, I was looking for my wedding fence. So I googled sustainable ethical jewellery and they come to us. So I'm always extra happy when they have that request because it means that the world is switching and that is actually a criteria that people follow through.


Ela Crain  14:30

Yeah. So would that mean is other jewellery makers like actually having such values would create more loyal customers for them too. I don't know if you see this as like a bad news you have a very niche approach and very strong values. But in some ways, as more and more jewellery makers adopt such values, it doesn't have to be the same or similar values. In a way, the world will be a better place we will treat Mother Earth nicer.


Olga Kassian  15:01

I wish this happens. I usually say I hope one-day ethics and sustainability won’t be a competitive factor for us. Because that means it became the standard, and we will have many different things to compete with Sure, they will be just as valuable. I hope one day that is possible.


Ela Crain  15:20

And what is the market like right now?


Olga Kassian  15:23

Very, very difficult. It's very difficult. There are in fact, many jewellery brands, many wonderful jewellery designers, so it is quite competitive each day, there are more brands with these kinds of values. But it's actually that makes me happy. I think those are great news. But we do manage to distinguish ourselves with the meaning of the pieces, which still with the values because it's still a niche, and also we defend. Because besides the philosophy besides the meaning of the pieces, we connect with different. For instance, the association that support LGBTQ people, we connect with other brands that share our values to support each other, though, we are always looking for particular events that we can contribute to in some way, either to the nations or awareness that marked his values that we believe in.


Ela Crain  16:11

Another question I have is about empowerment.


Olga Kassian  16:15

Wearing our pieces, wearing our jewels in particular, is like wearing our values. That's a big statement about where we believe in, I was saying you early, I didn't admit it. I was a feminist when I was younger, and I think a lot of us didn't, because even nowadays, some people still can't have a healthy relationship with that word, and wearing it and saying I'm proud of this. This is what I believe in, like it or not, that is empowering for me and even other faces like wearing described bracelets, which is quite a bold statement. Like I grab whatever I want, and I can get it. That for me is empowering.

Also, you have, of course, the beauty side of it. It makes you feel more beautiful. It makes you feel more powerful in a way of course, but in our case, the meaning they carry. I think they weigh a lot. For instance, I have my locket here, I want to open it, but they have a crystal inside. and this crystal has a meaning and we can delete the leadership which is the Maliki's, it can be intuitions with these lapis lazuli. It can be love for the rose quartz and I have it inside. And it's only for me to know I can share it with you someone that can share it if they want to. But it's here and it makes me even if it's on a conceptual spiritual level. It makes me feel something it makes me feel more comfortable than it's here with me. It's like a secret amulet.


Ela Crain  17:42

How do you choose your personal jewellery?


Olga Kassian  17:45

Oh, you know, now that I do jewellery? It's becoming more and more difficult. Because I've come to be so picky. It's really difficult. I usually go for things that are versatile that I can wear with lots of styles. On a daily basis, like more like hoops, they go with everything. or something. Actually, these are the ones that I wear every single day because they just go with everything. That's what I go for nowadays.


Ela Crain  18:14

Do you have different crystals for different occasions? Different empowerment.


Olga Kassian  18:19

Yes. So this crystal is interchangeable, and I can pick the one I want to wear, during that day. So that's the funny part about the special piece it was made to match our vibe for the day. I wanted to feel like a leader, I would vote for the Maliki Do you want to feel my intuition? I will pick the lapis lazuli.


Ela Crain  18:38

Essentially, it sounds like you've gone through an amazing transformation because you are an engineer. You completed your Bachelor's as an engineer. And then today you're in the world of fashion and crystals and jewellery and meaning and purpose and you have these values around it. How did this transformation happen personally?


Olga Kassian  18:58

it happened only when I moved to New York and live there for a while. I'm a very rational person. I'm rational technical. That's what I liked in general. And while being in New York, I started looking at fashion as a form of expression as something beautiful as something not as superficial as I thought it was because for me it was clothes. Okay, I liked styling, I liked clothes, but it was all it was. And then I started seeing it as more than it is. It is its part of who we are. The way that we dress means something to us if it transmits a message. So I started to get into that. Yeah, I just started to get into this world to meet people to learn their stories, to share stories. And my perspective kind of switched on just as it's switched on business. It still hard. If you ask anyone that knows me, they would still say that I'm a technical person very strict. But I opened my mind into these conceptual matters.


Ela Crain  20:04

And was there one occasion or a person who inspired you to open your mind?


Olga Kassian  20:09

Yeah. Absolutely. So I always talk about her. It's my business partner is Maria. When she is the person that kind of led me to this transformation, she's the one who took me to New York. She's the one that believed in me, and helped me to sort of pave my way. And she's super creative. She's super talented. And I learned with her every day. So I'm the technical part. And she brings me this fresh air of creativity. We get together very well.


Ela Crain  20:46

Yeah. Sounds like a beautiful partnership. Yeah. Why did you go to New York in the first place?


Olga Kassian  20:52

So that's a funny story. But I was doing an event, I was still at college, like the beginning of my second year. So as I was really a child, I was 19 years old. And I did a speech to Maria, which is now my business partner. And I was organising an event. And at the end of the speech, I said, so Oh, listen, I am doing these events. Would you like to come to my event? And she was like, wait, wait, wait. I know what you just did there. You don't care about your speech. You just came here to get me. Like, yeah, that's why I'm doing it. It's like, I love it. I love it. I need someone like that working with me. We just opened a store in New York. If you're smart, here's my card, you will wait for me at the end. And like, of course, I'm going to wait for you.

So I figured a way to wait for her and we met and she told me everything. She had a different business at the time, everything she was doing in New York, and that she was looking for someone to go there manage that. And they gave me some lessons on the business. Okay, because I was very, very young. And like three months later, I was moving to New York.


Ela Crain  22:02

Oh, wow. Wow. That's beautiful. Are you always this assertive and confident to approach people so directly, or is this something you learned later?


Olga Kassian  22:12

So the third was when I was younger, so my whole adolescence, I was like an actress, and I loved it. So I think that helped me to be. Yeah, to not be afraid to speak up and just ask for what I want. Yeah. So I think that helped a lot. So yeah, I went home and I was like, Mom, Dad, I'm moving to New York. Like, I'm not asking. I know I'm very lucky because my parents allowed this. Yeah, I know, some people do not have this possibility. Even though I was ready, leaving alone. You still want to keep a healthy relationship, but they're like, We do not agree. But you do you and we support you. And that is so important.


Ela Crain  22:55

You were 19 when you moved, and New York is one of the I mean, it's crazy places to move, say 19 year old. Did you have any fear or doubts when you were on the plane? Going they're like, Oh, am I crazy?


Olga Kassian  23:09

I never doubted that I was going when the moment Maria proposed this to me. I knew I was going there wasn't like an inch of me doubting, doubting that I would go. But then when I was on the plane alone, it's like, oh, my God, what is happening now? Right? Now this is real. It was really hard. Very, very rough. And also I couldn't drink because I was 19. And there, they can only drink when they're 21. Okay. Yeah, that was that was a hard part. But it was very lonely. First of all, because New York syrup city, everyone is doing their thing. They don't really have a lot of time to make friends and to do like a casual conversation. Everyone is, is late for something. And yeah, they have their goals. It's a difficult city. It is very, very lonely. Because at the beginning, I wasn't that cool. It was what I was doing. Because I followed the philosophy say yes, then you learn how to do it. And that's literally what I did. I think by the end, I was already I got used to it. I got used to the noise I got used to the busyness of the City ideas to the people always doing their own thing.


Ela Crain  24:28

You became one of those people who may be who was busy and


Olga Kassian  24:32

tidy, but it also made me realise because, at that time, I would move anywhere. And lots look back for a second. After that experience, I think twice because it made me realise that family and friends do make a lot of difference in your life. And at that time, I was like, there's no one that would stop me from moving to the other side of the world. And now I really give it a thought. Do I want to be away from everyone that I love? Yeah, I really thought about that. And I know this might be like a break from my future. And it's not always good. But for my mental health, that was a really important realisation. Yeah, absolutely. How long did you live in New York one year? Okay. Yeah. And I remember leaving the city, like for a weekend vacation. And I was like, wow, I can hear silence.


Ela Crain  25:28

And was that your plan initially to go there for a year, or you didn't know how long.


Olga Kassian  25:32

I didn’t know how long and that's what was scary, because I didn't know what it would end. But I knew I wouldn't give up. It was really, really hard. At the time, I cried a lot. It was a beautiful experience. I learned a lot and grew a lot. But it was so hard. And I always tell this bit to people because they think Oh, my God, you went to New York. It's fantastic. Wow, amazing. And it's not like that. Of course, it was important for me.


Ela Crain  25:57

You had the idea to start a jewellery brand in New York. But you waited until you're back in Portugal, or what was the story. How did that happen?


Olga Kassian  26:08

I started to get into fashion while I was in New York, because the brand I worked toward was also a fashion brand. So I really started to enjoy it. And to know get to know the brands get to know the designers get to know the creative processes. And I was like, there was something here I wanted to do I want to do something like this of my own. But back then I wanted to come back and finish my degree. Because I was like in second grade. And I tried really hard to do both things at the same time. But it didn't really work out. Yeah, like I studied on the plane and everything. But yeah, that didn't work. So I wanted to come back and finish my degree. And then when I finished the bachelor's, there was the moment of do I do my masters? Or do I stop here for now and do something different? And since I wasn't sure, if I wanted to go forward with the masters or not, because one thing I knew, I do not do things, just for the sake of doing them, you know? And nowadays, I feel lots of people do that. Just let's finish this. We're already here. Let's do it. Yep. And I did not want to do that. So I stopped. And I started meeting the right people doing the connections starting to put everything together to create Wonther. So I finished my degree in like, May or June and then November .Wonther was launched


Ela Crain  27:26

This is incredible anyway, this is so inspiring, because you didn't have any experience like running a business before you just graduated and started something. Where did you find this confidence? Like for people who are feeling oh, can I do that? Would I manage it? How could they like overcome this? What would you say that helps you that could help them?


Olga Kassian  27:48

I think one thing that makes a lot of difference is talking to people and asking them for advice. For instance, Maria, for me, was super important because she had a lot of experience. And I would ask her everything, not only her, everyone I knew that could help me in that field, I would go for advice. People are always afraid of sharing their business idea. They shouldn't be. It takes so much work, you know, it takes so much work to copy an idea to actually implement it. You can tell everyone, I'm sure no one is going to actually do it, you know. And even now, we still do that. Sometimes we contact random people like listen, we're struggling with this. You're super experienced, can you help me, okay? If I start a new project, I know this is what I'm going to do. I'm going to select a few people I want to talk to, and I'm going to ask them for advice and experience.


Ela Crain  28:39

And most people like sharing their expertise, helping anyway, so why not make use of that? It's like finding mentors. Of the answer, right?


Olga Kassian  28:47

Yeah. And even now, some people come to me for advice.


Ela Crain  28:52

I'm sure after watching this interview, you will get quite a few you know,


Olga Kassian  28:57

they delete it, I can contribute to them. It makes me happy. Even Maria, she's super experienced. And she also asks people on a higher level for advice and this is how it works. And I think this is fantastic. And most people are afraid to ask for help. If I need to say one thing to intrapreneurs is ask for help ask for advice.


Ela Crain  29:15

Yeah. Do you have future plans beyond water or you're happy with it and you want to just grow before now?


Olga Kassian  29:24

Oh, but for water or something else that I'm


Ela Crain  29:26

Beyond. I mean any other plans?


Olga Kassian  29:29

Right now I'm learning front end development?


Ela Crain  29:32

Oh, that’s interesting. Okay, the engineer site is triggered again. Okay, it


Olga Kassian  29:35

kicked in again. Really? First of all, I started it because I needed for Wonther. And were still a small team. So I did some things but I was struggling and I got tired of always asking for favours. So I was like, I'm gonna learn these myself and I'm just going to do it. So I started that course and I'm loving it. I really liked it. I come to realise that and then I'm working on some other projects. With more technical, they are not on the fashion area. But they are in the sustainability field. That is something I want to go for. I want to follow that line. Even though it's beyond fashion, it is still unsustainable.


Ela Crain  30:13

It's a beautiful balance, sustainability and fashion. And also, they're so different in a way, sometimes the word fashion has a weight in itself, because I feel like there is this upper layer of fashion that it's all about looks, looks, you know, you're not worthy unless you have this or that you're not going to look good smell good. Unless you have this or that. And then there are deeper levels, like you're bringing in, like adding sustainability, adding values, and kind of empowering people. So do you have any plans for Wonther to grow in other areas, adding more values or variety?


Olga Kassian  30:55

Like other products, for instance,


Ela Crain  30:58

Beyond jewellery, maybe


Olga Kassian  31:00

I would love to. Maybe we would even go to my jewellery, first of all, then we would go like to go to other accessories. And when the time is right, to make it a full fashion brand, that would be wonderful. I know, there are still some good years of distance before that happens. But sure, for the future, it makes total sense.


Ela Crain  31:19

Yeah. And how do you find as a brand that kind of is so oriented around meaning and ethics and sustainability? How do you fight the superficial levels of fashion?


Olga Kassian  31:30

How do we fight it?


Ela Crain  31:33

Do you just ignore it and say, Okay, I'm gonna do my thing, and that those layers are there for whoever is interested in but I'm coming offering something else, or is that your approach?


Olga Kassian  31:42

Yeah, that's one of our approaches. And then also the superficial things, we kind of compliment that because I still think that our pieces are beautiful. I know, I'm suspicious, but I do think they are, of course, and I think the I statics, you know, the beauty can meet the sustainability and ethics, they don't need to be two separate worlds. Some people do by our faces, because only because they are beautiful, you know, they are a smaller percentage of our customers, but they still do exist that just simply like our, our design, and I think that's okay.

We are growing, we are all evolving, and also our customers are evolving, and we have these responsibilities to educate them. That's why we talk about this a lot. When we talk about sustainabilities, when we talk about ethics, and these values, and as inclusivity and feminist, we don't talk about them just this is what we are doing, we approach them on a global level, if something worldwide is happening, and it's relevant to this fundamentals, we will approach it, we will talk about it, we will interview people about it. And therefore our customers or our community will also be educated on these subjects. And maybe along the way, we'll pick some of these people that only cared about the design to care about these issues, too.


Ela Crain  33:01

When you say educate them, how active are you in this education?


Olga Kassian  33:06

So we do support the causes, as I was mentioning before, and recently, we need an online event of the streaming after the commentary, the shadow of gold. We supported the entity that created the commentary. And we gave free access to everyone that wanted to watch this documentary, because we felt it was so important. Yeah. So we do these kinds of things. I would love to do more and bigger, but it's one step at a time.


Ela Crain  33:33

Yeah, absolutely. Although I must say I really am a fan of you and your values and we really need more jewellery makers and in other areas too. More people who are as responsible and also as kind as you are because this is our home and we've been kind of mistreating it for a while. I don't think we can go on about like this for long. So thank you so much for joining us today and thank you so much for your work. We will definitely link to your website in Episode descriptions and it was very nice to have you thank you for your time.


Olga Kassian  34:07

Thank you so much, Ela.


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If you make things the right way, they can be wonderful.


Olga's biggest dream is to one day only use precious metals that are donated or sold to Wonther by their customers. There she will be sure where it comes from.


The way we dress means something to us. It transmits a message

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