Not a lot of people are lucky to make a living out of a passion. Owner of “Palamuti” PJ Valenciano is one such person.
PJ has always been fond of creating and hand-making jewelry. It started out simply as a past time during weekends. But through the prodding of family and friends who glimpsed this creative side of PJ, she decided to turn it into a business and start Palamuti.
Being a Social Sciences graduate from the University of the Philippines, PJ wanted not only to create accessories, but also to lend a helping hand to others. She shares, “presently, Palamuti is not just about creating handmade bead embroidery pieces, It has become an avenue of support for Filipino women artisans from rural and urban poor communities. “ In fact, Palamuti’s tagline or core vision is, “made by a woman, inspired by women, for every woman”.
But it wasn’t all a breeze for PJ. She had to learn the tricks of the trade from scratch. Since PJ personally contacts and meets suppliers for the materials Palamuti uses, it’s no wonder that like every hard-working person, she sometimes experience mental and physical fatigue.
Creative process being burned out at times is also a no brainer in the business she handles, but PJ always ensures quality of her products. She shares that a simple design of a statement necklace may take 2-3 days to create, while a much more complex design may need 5 days of construction and creation.
Palamuti not only supports Filipino women, but also locally produced materials, which she and her team researches to ensure they are sustainable and environmentally friendly. But aside from the aesthetics of fine quality, ecologically and environmentally made products, their statement necklaces contain unique and beautiful pieces that produce eye-catching and beautifully-designed bead embroideries. It isn’t a repetitive production of necklaces too. She rarely repeats designs so clients can be assured their accessories are unique and one-of-a-kind.
If anything, PJ believes that one of the things that make Palamuti unique is that each statement necklace is a reflection of the artist that has made it. PJ describes, “my aesthetics are continually shaped and influenced by my experiences in a world filled with beauty and wonder. Even though life isn’t meant to be a perfect journey, everyone should be able to keep things in perspective and be able to stop and enjoy the view life has to offer. My creations are a culmination of viewpoints that I’ve enjoyed in my life, and I’m simply sharing them through my craftsmanship and artistry.“
Today, Palamuti sells the most unique statement necklaces from bead embroidery. Their pieces have reached customers not only locally but internationally as well, such as Belgium. But Palamuti continues to reach Filipino women of different communities and marginalized sectors to teach them how to make hand-made bead embroidery necklaces for their means of living too. One of their most recent journeys in inspiring and teaching Filipino women has been in El Nido, Palawan.
For PJ Valenciano and the growth of Palamuti, every piece of jewelry is a journey and a story. The passion for craftsmanship and artisan statement necklaces has created an opportunity for their growth, but also an opportunity to help others. Fashion, after all, doesn’t allow itself to be boxed. So the next time you try on a beautiful piece of jewelry or clothing, there’s no harm in learning about the story behind it.
If you want to know more about PJ Valencio’s Palamuti and their jewelry, you may visit them at http://palamutishop.com, http://palamutibypjvalenciano.blogspot.com. Or http://facebook.com/palamutibypjv. Or contact them at (02) 964.1997 and (0917) 860.7193
All photos used in the article are from PJ Valenciano