Vintage 10K Gold Oaxaca Filigree Earrings For Sale: Let’s Help a Family of Women

My neighbors want to fix up their house. They need a kitchen. They want to replace the fabric curtains with real windows to keep out the cold and fortify the walls and roof of an old adobe house to keep out the rain. They are a household of three generations of women: grandmother is in her late 80’s, mom is in her early 40’s, and the nine-year-old daughter loves to read. She needs new school shoes.

Ernestina's Jewelry-2

Everyone works hard. Mom makes the some of the best tamales in town. She learned from her mother who learned from hers. She makes them by hand, grinds the corn on the metate then makes a dough, rolls the masa between her palms, presses it on a tortilla press, stuffs the dough with a chicken caught from the yard, fattened with organic corn then cooked, adds a secret family recipe of mole made with chicken broth, tucks it into carefully wrapped corn or banana husks, folded or tied neatly, and steams the packages over a water bath for an hour. Sometimes she makes hundreds. I know she is up every day at four in the morning. I buy these for 40 cents each. Sometimes I buy more than I need.

#1: Pearl, red glass, 10K gold dangle earrings with French wires. $265.

#1: Pearl, red glass, 10K gold dangle earrings with French wires. $265.

About the only thing of real value they have to sell to raise money for house repairs and construction is heirloom 10k gold jewelry.

Traditional filagree 10k gold with red glass, basket hoops, $175.

#2: Traditional filigree 10k gold with red glass, basket hoops, $185. SOLD to Judy G. Thank You!

I said I would help, so I am posting photos and I will bring the earrings to the U.S. when I leave Oaxaca on April 7 — if you care to make a purchase.  Let me know which you like and I will invoice you with PayPal (plus shipping). Because this is a fundraiser and the money goes directly to the family, I will add-on the 3% PayPal fee to your invoice.

Delicate tri-color stones with 10K gold leaf design, small, $65.

#3: Delicate tri-color stones with 10K gold leaf design, small, $65. SOLD to Tami. Thank YOU!

Zapotec women love their delicate filigree gold earrings. It is usually the only adornment they wear. They will receive a small pair of earrings as a gift for a birthday or a baptism, a larger pair for a quinciniera (15th birthday), and then later a more substantial pair as a wedding present.

Dangle with pearls, clear crystal, 10k gold filagree, $175.

#4: Dangle with pearls, clear crystal, 10k gold filigree, $175.

Husbands will often give gold earrings as a love token to wives. The size and intricacy of the earrings are a symbol of prosperity and status. 

3-tier dangle, 10K gold and pearls with bow, $175.

#5: 3-tier dangle, 10K gold and pearls with bow, $175. SOLD to Nancy C. Thank YOU!

Grandma took off her large gold filigree earrings tonight and asked me to sell them for her, too. I said, no. They are very old and I know what they mean to her.

Intense purple, pearls, 10k gold, $250.

#6: Intense purple, pearls, 10k gold, $250.

Home improvement project for my neighbors.

Home improvement project for my neighbors.

And, here is a beautiful tri-color bracelet with traditional mesoamerican greca design, inside circumference is eight inches. 10k gold, $300.

10k gold tri-color bracelet, $300.

#7: 10k gold tri-color bracelet, $300.

The family appreciates your consideration!


21 responses to “Vintage 10K Gold Oaxaca Filigree Earrings For Sale: Let’s Help a Family of Women

  1. Dear Norma,
    We think the idea of trying to get donations on Indiegogo is wonderful.

    Jo Ann and Tom

    • JoAnn and Tom, thanks. I remember your saying that a minimum dollar amount has to be raised or there is a high fee charged (like 8%?) to the organizer. A PayPal payment costs 3%. It is easy to send $$ to a friend or family with PayPal and in the end, it might be cheaper. Any amount is welcome!

  2. I agree with Sheri! I think if you could organize it through Kickstarter, the money would come……:-D I do love my earrings however and told my daughters who were quite concerned about her having to give up her earrings that I will put them in my will to go back to her!! It is good that they aren’t asking for a handout-this kind of attitude makes us that have more want to give generously to those with less!!

    • Hi, Becky, well you made your donation and bought your beautiful earrings from the family when you were here for the weaving workshop, so you have done your part! Thank you so much for being part of the support system. Hugs, Norma

  3. Is the #3 set post earrings? It’s hard to see in the photo. I think I’m in on those depending on the answer!

    • Tami, the #3 earrings are on wires with French hooks. Let me know if you want them.

      • Yes, I do! I don’t have a PayPal account, though. Do I need to sign up or is there another method?

        • Tami, I am in Oaxaca and don’t return to the U.S. for another week. For me to give the family money and bring your earrings to send to you, I will need payment in advance. So, PayPal is the only way. I will send you an invoice. You can make a payment with a credit card. You might have to join PayPal to do that, but it is fairly easy. So, take a look at your email address for the PayPal Invoice from me. Thank you so much for your support. Norma

  4. Wonderful of you to help [the] Señora, her mother and daughter. I met this family years ago. What happened to Señor and their son? You mention only the women now live in the house. I think the idea of starting up a Kickstarter fund would be better so the women don’t have to give up their precious gold filagree earrings.

  5. I agree with Sheri. I would definitely contribute to a Kickstarter campaign. That way they get to keep their earrings!

    • Well, anyone who would like to contribute — just let me know. I will send you a PayPal invoice for the amount you want to gift and then give the money in pesos to the family. PayPal charges a 3% transaction fee. I think there is a minimum of money to raise with Kickstarter or Indiegogo and the transaction fee is 8% of the amount raised. So, tell me if you want to help the family and I will send you an invoice. Thank you Rodolfo and everyone for your support.

    • Yes, I think if you needed to raise more money Kickstart would be a good idea – but let’s just pay through PayPal. At least that is what I want to do – easier and more direct and the transaction is less expensive. Send invoice to Norma – make it for $75.
      When I come back to Teo they can give me a couple of tamales from their new kitchen.

  6. I’d love #2, Norma, and am very happy to support this project.


    • Lovely, Judy, thank YOU! And, how do I get them to you in Germany? 🙂

      • Hi Norma,

        We have a mail drop in VA for just this sort of thing (plus one of my PayPal accounts is linked to this address).

        107 S. West Street, PMB 307
        Alexandria, VA 22314

        I feel so dreadful taking these prized earrings and wonder if I wouldn’t just feel better sending the money…and letting these lovely women keep their treasures. Don’t send ’em yet until I consult the Talmud!

        xoxoxo Judy

        • Don’t feel dreadful. Be happy you are helping and you get a beautiful pair of earrings, too. When the family has better times, they can replace those earrings with ones of equal or greater beauty. No worries!

    • Judy, I know they are happy to sell you the earrings and know that they went to a good home, to someone who appreciates them. The Talmud says you are doing a mitzvah — here in Zapotec land it is called Guelaguetza — mutual exchange, one gives and one gets, it’s called community support. Only now the community extends to Europe. Sending gratitude and thanks for your generosity.

  7. Hey Norma – Why don’t you start a little collection for them among your readers/followers. I bet we could come it come contributions toward their kitchen remodeling. YES YES and YES.
    Then they could keep their prized earrings!

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