October 23, 2020 3 min read

Just over ten years ago, I had a dream to create a gemstone import business that would help to produce funding necessary to establish and develop an orphanage in Kosele, Kenya. Supported by more long days and short nights than I can count, Baraka Gems was born on July 9, 2009. Almost simultaneously, the physical facade of Baraka Orphanage began to take shape on the other side of the globe. Over the span of the last decade, the orphanage has grown closer to completion, and our fledgling jewelry company found its place on the map as the refined, relaxed, and reliable fine jewelry store that I hoped it would be. Today, we are stepping out into new spaces that we believe you are going to love!

We are embarking on a whole new look and client experience while still maintaining our consistent commitment to our cause, customer service, quality fine jewelry, and competitive pricing. This blog entry signifies the beginning of many new things for us.

To begin with, I want to welcome you to our brand new e-commerce website. For the first time, you will be able to purchase many of our beautiful pieces directly from our website anywhere in the country. Stay up to date on new merchandise, events, and our contributions to our sister non-profit organization, A Ring Of Hope.

We are also announcing today that we have begun producing our first ever exclusive line of Baraka Gems' fine jewelry - titled The Nafasi Collection. Our studio jewelry designer, Taylor Crockett and myself are still in the process of developing this line and the rich meaning behind every piece. The word Nafasi is Ki-Swahili for "open space". As you peruse the collection on the website, you will find that we have named every item with a unique Swahili name that we believe represents each piece; in dedication to the orphans we care for in Kenya. Each ring is designed and handcrafted in Seattle, made with recycled metals.

In addition, we are happy to announce the official address of our new location in PhinneyWood here in Seattle, WA. While we continue to finalize move in details of our redesigned jewelry studio, we have already begun to schedule appointments beginning November 10. We invite you to visit us in our comfortable and unique atmosphere filled with fine jewelry options and unique mineral and gemstone art from around the world. We welcome you to contact our studio to schedule your private jewelry appointment at our new location: 8218 Greenwood Avenue N.

Lastly, we have transitioned to a new name. In 2009, I began the business under the name Baraka Gems. In 2012, I incorporated the business under the name Baraka Gemstones and Jewelry in order to emphasize our additional fine jewelry services. However, now that we are readily recognized in the Seattle community as a premiere fine jewelry store, it is time for us to return to our original namesake. You will notice we also updated and refined our logo to officially reflect our new image.

With all this change comes eager anticipation for the future. I have to be honest, like so many other small business owners around the country, we have faced our 2020 challenges. However, we choose to dwell on the positive and retain our hope for a brighter future for all. I have always wanted Baraka Gems to be more than just a jewelry store. It has always been my desire to be a beacon of beauty, even more so in what seems right now to be declining times. I believe now more than ever that it is our time to shine, and we invite you to shine with us. Let us come together and find a way to use the luxurious to change the circumstances of the impoverished.

As always, thank you to our loyal and consistent clientele. Without you, we would not be here today. It is because of you that we have been able to withstand the pressure of so much change and emerge as a refined, and committed company. I, for one can hardly wait to see what comes next.

For a more beautiful world,

Jamie Jockwig