"I… use Puebla's handcrafted Talavera ceramic. It gives a special touch to my silver designs and each material enhances the other."
"I'm Monica Vazquez from Guadalajara. I craft jewelry that fuses different materials and ideas —usually hand-painted ceramic with silver, mined in Mexico.
"I consider myself a creative person. I work hard and am dedicated to everything I do. Tough situations lead me to stay on track, and this motivates me to surpass my previous achievements, earn a university degree, work, and learn many things from life.
"Later, I found myself out of work and so I began to create artisanal jewelry. I feel a certain pride in knowing that my designs can now be seen all over the world through Novica.
"I've had a lot of fun moments in my life, and the time spent with my family and friends have brought many a smile. Laughter should be a part of living.
"I feel a profound admiration and love for everything made in Mexico. Seeing the different arts and crafts forms of our country led me to use Puebla's handcrafted Talavera ceramic. It gives a special touch to my silver designs and each material enhances the other. I've learned a great deal from the Talavera ceramists and this has let me create designs of my own.
"Ever since I was a child, I've loved to work with my hands. Crafting is very fulfilling. As I learned about different kinds of handicrafts, I discovered a passion for jewelry and an ability to create unique designs. The ceramic accents I use are individually painted by hand.
"My inspiration comes from things we women like — what we wear, what makes us stand out and, of course, Mexican artisan work, which is an art in itself for me. The difficult part is creating designs that shoppers will continue to wear and love.
"Working on my own has been a very gratifying experience. It's been a challenge — both personally and professionally — but it's enriched me with the people I've met who have encouraged and supported me.
"I'd love to become recognized as a designer here and throughout the world. So far, I do all the work myself but if I were able to have assistants, I'd want them to share my passion for Mexican art. If this happens, I'll be able to create a source of income for others using fair trade concepts."