While the season of giving is upon us, some local makers and artists have turned this time of giving into a year-round endeavor.
Here is a list of a few Tucson makers who give back to local and national organizations when customers purchase their handcrafted products (listed in alphabetical order).
Former Tucsonan Cassandra Kehoe’s “For All // Para Todos” jewelry collection promotes “equity, justice and accessibility FOR ALL people,” according to Kehoe’s website. Some of the jewelry Kehoe sells includes shattered glass ceiling pendants and necklaces with “equal pay” or preferred pronouns scrawled across them.
As an attorney, Kehoe has a background in “specialized legal focus on civil rights and gender discrimination,” according to her website.
Ohei Studio is run by Sonoran Desert transplant, lawyer and artist Heidi Nielson, who you may remember from this previous #ThisIsTucson story. Nielson creates fine art and hand-lettering prints for her shop.
For some of her fine art pieces, 25% of the proceeds currently go to World Central Kitchen, which helps bring fresh meals to families affected by crises across the globe.
Proceeds from her Supreme Court-inspired art, hand-lettering prints and mystery art grab bags go to other organizations like the Justice Advocates Coalition at the University of Arizona, the National Latina/o Law Student Association and the Community Food Bank of Southern Arizona.
For more information or to purchase an item, visit Ohei Studio’s website.
Spring + Vine
While some local makers give back with monetary donations, others, like Spring + Vine, give back to the community with in-kind donations. For every soap bar purchased from Spring + Vine, artist Ashley Ambrosio will donate a mini bar of soap to “youth in need in our community,” according to her website.
Currently, Spring + Vine has teamed up with local organization I Am You 360, which provides personal hygiene bags (that include Spring + Vine soap) for youth in need.
You can find Spring + Vine soaps at local shops like Cero., Hotel McCoy, Pop Cycle and Arizona Poppy Shop.
For more information or to purchase an item, check out Spring + Vine’s website.
Taco Bout Crafting
If you’re a frequent attendee to artisan markets here in Tucson, you’ve probably stumbled across Taco Bout Crafting’s cute clay earrings (we’re looking at you, concha heart earrings!).
With every purchase you make at Taco Bout Crafting, Alejandra Baltazar-Carlat, the creator behind the shop, will donate to organizations in Tucson, according to her Instagram page. Past examples include Youth On Their Own, Galeria Mitotera and a GoFundMe of a local dancer who was injured in a car crash.
Baltazar-Carlat, who is originally from Querétaro, México, got into crafting clay earrings during the first year of the COVID-19 pandemic.
“Crafting has been helping me stay sane during this quarantine, in April 2020 I found myself obsessing over handmade clay earrings and decided to make some of my own. I was frightened to make this decision and taking the next step, but my husband has motivated me to start a small business of my own, and here I am sharing this with you all,” she writes on her website.
For more information or to purchase some handcrafted earrings, visit Taco Bout Crafting’s website.
The Be Good Collection
The Be Good Collection is a clothing brand designed by Julia Gray, a Minneapolis native who attends the University of Arizona. Gray’s designs feature uplifting messages like “It’s a lovely day today” and “Note to self: Do more of what makes you happy.” The Be Good Collection was previously featured in a #ThisIsTucson story.
For each product purchased, Gray will donate 10% of the proceeds to national organizations or fundraisers. Currently, each item in her shop has a different designated cause that she donates to. Some of the organizations and fundraisers include the Make-A-Wish Foundation, Smile Foundation and the Uvalde elementary school shooting victims' GoFundMe.
For more information or to purchase an item, visit The Be Good Collection’s website.
Yours Truly Notecards
Yours Truly Notecards was created by Enrique Aldana, the senior director of development for Arizona Public Media and a local photographer. Aldana uses his Tucson-area photographs and designs for notecards, postcards and more.
Aldana was inspired by his daughter Sophie to start Yours Truly Notecards, according to his website.
Plus, all proceeds from each month's featured artist card "benefits local charities," according to Yours Truly Notecards' website.
You can purchase Aldana's other notecards at Bookmans, Tucson Botanical Gardens, Tucson Museum of Art, Barrio Books and more.
For more information or to purchase an item, check out Yours Truly Notecards’ website.
Do you know of more local makers who give back to good causes? Send me an email at firstname.lastname@example.org and we can keep this list updated.