So there we were… in Empoli, a fabulous city about 35 km West of Florence.
We had rented a villa for the month of June and planned to visit many of the fabulous Tuscan cities and towns nearby. However, our hometown would be Empoli.
After just a few steps on one of the picturesque walking streets in Empoli, I turned and was greeted by a tiny shop…BAM! I loved it instantly. It was a fashion jewelry shop with amazing handcrafted, über-chic pieces.
There stood the designer, Karina Marcela, a beautiful young woman with great style and the hands of an angel. We began to speak (sort of) my broken Italian and her tiny bit of English, and at the end of an hour we were in business.
She was going to design for BuDhaGirl. We excitedly put together exclusive pieces in fabulous materials and colors, and off we went in our separate directions to make it all happen. So exciting.
Here is Karina’s curriculum vitae:
Karina was born in Latin America (El Salvador) in 1982, at age 2 she was adopted by her Sicilian family.
Even as a child she was attracted to beautiful things. The baroque architecture found in Sicily filled her eyes, and she grew in a land rich in strong flavors and contrasting colors. She was also aware of the Arab and Norman influence.
Karina enrolled in the Faculty of Architecture at the University of Palermo yet quickly became interested in the world of fashion. Her passion for jewelry was then established during her first years at university, where research and experimentation were the basis of her work as a jeweler. After graduating from the Faculty of Palermo in Industrial Technical Drawing, Karina moved to Florence, attracted by the city that was the cradle of the Renaissance.
In 2014 she opened her jewelry Atelier in Empoli, it is a place that serves as a container, to expose her many collections of jewelry, and also as her current design studio.
Karina is convinced that there is no more challenging work as that of predicting women's taste in accessories. She shares her knowledge, passion, and creativity with my clients.
Her latest bijoux collections capture an almost exotic mood, typically baroque with conspicuously decorated applications. A unique style that combines the legacy and opulence of Sicilian culture, a patronage to modern style, attention to detail, and that is often a paradox that shows the minimalist and the eccentric.