Jewelry that Empowers

Who They Are

Alexis was a student at Vanderbilt when Lyme disease changed the course of her life. This unexpected diagnosis caused her to take a leave of absence, which she spent by walking the streets of Nashville connecting with the homeless population there. One man, a 60-year-old Cuban immigrant named Ray, was diagnosed with cancer around the same time that Alexis was diagnosed with Lyme disease. Together, they formed a close bond and met regularly to speak Spanish and enjoy meals.

Through all of this time spent with the local population of people experiencing homelessness, Alexis found that there was a true opportunity, and a true need, to employ the people that she met. She wanted to do something to help. During this period, she met Corbin, a fellow student with a shared passion for using business to help people in need. Together, they drafted out a plan for a jewelry business that would help employ those experiencing homelessness and share beauty with the world.

One day, Alexis received a call from Ray. He was dying. Alexis rushed to his side, and he shared something with her. He had been saving money for years and had stashed it in a duffel bag in a nearby storage unit. Ray told Alexis to take that money, and create the business that would help others experiencing homeless find a purpose through jewelry. And Unlocked was created.

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Why We Like Them

Soon after Alexis and Corbin graduated from Vanderbilt, they began working on Unlocked full time. Soon after, they connected with a local non-profit organization that provides aid to the homeless population in Nashville: Community Care Fellowship (CCF). Unlocked and CCF are now partners and have created an initiative called the Unlocked Pathways–a 6-12 month program that helps with transition people out of homelessness. Unlocked Pathways helps through 5 key areas: Wages and Financial Empowerment, Housing Stability and Opportunity, Career Counseling and Development, Professional Counseling, and Community Support.

Metal extraction is extremely costly and damaging to the environment, which is why Unlocked turns to 100% recycled silver for their beautiful pieces. Furthermore, Unlocked monitors their electricity and water usage to make sure that they are keeping up with sustainable methods and standards!

  • Empowers Women
    Empowers Women
  • Safe & Fair Labor
    Safe and Fair Labor
  • Sustainable Manufacturing
    Sustainable Manufacturing
  • Handmade
  • Made in the USA
    Made in the USA
  • 100% Recycled Content
    100% Recycled Content

This company promotes the empowerment of women by providing safe employment opportunities and working conditions, promoting community programs and gender equality, or donating time or funds towards women’s education and empowerment opportunities.

We support safe and fair labor practices when producing sustainable products. This company cares for their workers by fostering a safe work environment and providing their employees with fair wage.

Some or all of the energy used to make this product is produced via renewable energy sources such as solar, wind, or hydropower.

We support small businesses and craftspeople who create each of their products with care. Handmade products are generally produced on a small scale, without the use of large energy consuming factories and production facilities. Buying handmade helps support art, communities, and people’s livelihoods.

This product was made in the United States. Buying locally made items helps to reduce harmful emissions that result from transportation during and after the production process. Purchasing products made in the United States also ensures that the items are produced in ways that meet strict safety and labor standards.

Recycling is the process of taking an otherwise-discarded item or material and cleaning, sorting, and breaking it down into its basic form (such as fibers or pellets). This material is then used to produce new items. Recycling keeps useful materials from being discarded in landfills, prevents resource extraction due to the creation of new materials, and provides a new life for used items. Recycling can utilize both pre-consumer waste (materials left over from production) or post-consumer materials (used clothing, empty water bottles, etc). This product is made from 100% recycled content.

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