A memorable life adventure in Senegal, Africa is what initially drove me to begin my own jewelry line. Walking down any street in Senegal is an experience for the senses, whether it involves overhearing an animated business exchange at a bustling market, eyeing the beautiful cloth and beaded products laid out for sale, or smelling the fragrant nuts, fruit, and other goodies sold on the street. Some of my richest experiences there involved talking with these vendors and understanding more about the community they lived in, the inspiration behind their vibrant market wares, and how they developed the skills that rendered their products. One particular day I encountered a group of women selling beads on the street. As I sat down with them, they told me the story behind each of their handmade beads. It quickly became clear to me that the beauty of these beads was a direct result of their careful and caring hands. I took home my own collection of their beads to remind me of the great joy that a precious thing can bring – a tiny keepsake of a beautiful moment.
My other big inspiration in life is my son, Zavi after whom I named my store Zavi Zou. His smiles and giggles are my most previous living keepsake, and he is my motivation for finding beauty in all things and forms.
Each piece of Zavi Zou jewelry is custom wrought and uniquely designed using high-quality precious materials. All metals used in my designs are gold-filled and can be considered lifetime pieces. The gemstones and other precious beads that I use for my jewelry come from around the world, and each have a unique story to tell. No gemstone in my work is the exact shape or color, but I use and celebrate this uniqueness in my work.