About & Policies
Sorry, now what's this about trash?
All the pieces in this shop are made of garbage picked up during Chicago beach clean-ups.
I probably fret about landfills and plastics in the environment more than your average girl -- I feel especially anxious about the effects on animals! -- and I decided to try to do something highlighting this. Since making wearable art is really my jam (no shade to artists who work in 2D), it seemed the perfect medium.
Our planet is drowning in plastic, and unfortunately it's really, really easy for me to stock up on "materials" whenever I do a clean-up. (Did you know that 91% of consumer plastics are used just one time, never to be recycled?)
Some of my favorite materials are drinking straws; soda or water bottles and caps; plastic cutlery; coffee cup spill sticks; and broken sand toys.
I probably watch too much Project Runway, because for each piece I like to think about "the woman who's wearing this, where is she going? Who is she?" and that's where the names come for each piece, from the imaginary woman I've created.
I go to the beach with two reusable bags: one for trash, and one for recyclables. (Because I am easily grossed out, I wear big yellow dishwashing gloves!). And then I just collect items until my two bags fill up. Then the trash gets dumped, and I sort out the useful recyclables vs not.
When I get home, everything soaks in 99% pure, medical-grade isopropyl alcohol for at least 24 hours, and then another 12-24 in boiling hot, soapy water. (And then I cut off anything that would have touched someone's mouth, like both ends of the drinking straws, and the eating-end of plastic cutlery.)
After that, I just chop up each piece according to what I'm going to use it for -- the good part about working with plastics is that they come in alllll different colors. And then everything gets encased in resin!
♡♡♡ I donate a portion of the proceeds to the Surfrider Foundation, a non-profit dedicated to help clean the world's oceans. And, whenever possible, I use recycled, biodegradable, or compostable packaging materials.
Please keep in mind that the pieces are not "perfect" like you'd find mass-produced in a store -- they're handmade, and that's part of their charm! They may not be perfectly symmetrical, the backs may not be perfectly smooth, etc. Remember, they're sisters, not twins.
How to Care for Your Pieces
The most important thing is that you do not store your pieces in direct sunlight. (Feel free to wear them in sunlight, just don't store them in it!) If you do, you may find your piece yellowing over time.
Since your piece is going to be very glossy and shiny, like any shiny object, try not to scratch up the surface. Resin is pretty durable, just be mindful, and try to remove your pieces before showering, doing chores, working in the garden, training lions, etc.
As with any metal jewelry, I would recommend avoiding contact with perfumes, lotions, nail polish & remover, etc. Of course you can wear lotion while wearing your pieces, but it's better to put the lotion on before you put on your ring, for example. The harshest chemicals for your pieces will be cleansers, cigarette and cigar smoke, and alcohol-based products like nail polish remover, or hand sanitizer. It's best to take off your ring before using hand sanitizer, but i know that's not always possible.
If you need to clean your piece, the best option will be a soft microber cloth and a very very small amount of dish soap. All sterling silver will tarnish over time, varying based on each person's specific skin chemistry, daily chemical exposure, etc. You can use a polishing cloth to remove tarnish, but be careful to avoid the resin part of the piece. Believe it or not, the more you wear your piece, the less it will tarnish, as your skin acts as sort of a natural polishing agent to the metal.
Plesase contact with me any questions!
Are the pieces made in a pet-free/smoke-free space?
All pieces are made in a smoke-free, cat-free home. I do have a dog, but he never helps me with the pieces. ;)
I'm allergic to nickel -- do you use nickel?
Nope! I'm allergic to nickel too. For the earrings, the posts are made of stainless steel. If you'd like to upgrade to sterling silver, that's an option in the shop -- just add that as an extra item, as if it were another pair of earrings, and I'll see it when you check out.
The options for the necklaces/pendants as follows: Silver standard chain -> stainless steel. Gold standard chain -> plated iron. Gold paperclip chain -> gold-plated solid brass. Rose gold/copper -> copper alloy.
Do you ever do sales?
Sometimes! For holidays or other special occasions, or if I want to clear out inventory to add more new styles. The best way to keep on top of sales is to follow me on Instragram: @tinysunshinecollective
Can I pick what free studs I get with my order?
Sorry, no. That's not possible. I do try to choose a set that seems to complement the vibe of whatever you've ordered though: brights vs neutrals, etc. Think of it as a fun surprise!
Jewelry can be a choking hazard for small children. Do not leave your pieces unattended around children and do not allow children to play with your jewelry.
Returns & Exchanges
Please allow for a 4 business day processing time. I hope to get these out within 2 business days, but allow for 4 in the event of large number of orders. This does not include shipping.
Due to COVID-19, there might be unexpected delays in shipping.
Tiny Sunshine Collective is not responsible for lost, stolen, or re-routed packages.
PLEASE make sure your address is correct when checking out. Any orders that are returned to me due to incorrect shipping addresses incur additional shipping charges.
Feel free to email me anytime at firstname.lastname@example.org!