On Our Shelf: 100s of Empowering Female Voices

100 women of jewelry and 100 vital voices books empowering female voices

A voice can provide an individual with agency and power. When one speaks out, it empowers the next one. And when many come together, they become too loud to ignore. For this edition of On Our Shelf, we have chosen two books by women who each set out to share the empowering female voices of 100 other women. Together, women determined to make a sound and pave the way for the next one to be heard. Discover 100 Women of Jewelry by Linda Kozloff-Turner and Vital Voices: 100 Women Using Their Power to Empower.


By Linda Kozloff-Turner, and edited by Frank Stankus

Author Linda Kozloff-Turner’s inspiring story is one of resilience and courage, which makes it hard to simply define her as a “jewelry designer”.

As the owner of Christine Marguerite Designs, Linda creates exquisite jewelry from ethically sourced materials made locally in Boulder, Colorado. Her team constantly sees her going after the next challenge, pushing the boundaries, and teaching her students to do so; while never compromising on quality, uniqueness, and even her principles.

As part of her deep sense of community, Linda started her own project to empower other females in the design industry, giving them a voice and a platform to tell their own stories, and together they were louder and more visible than ever.

Each woman in this book is a treasure.

The project began in 2016 when Linda decided to interview 100 female designers, artists, and bench jewelers from all around the world to bring their stories to light. She listened to them all, their struggles and their progress, their failures and their conquests. The showcasing of these experiences aimed to empower the women who shared them. But also the ones who received the message, turning it all into a beautiful book: 100 Women of Jewelry.

In the book, unique photographs capture women like Ariana Boussard-Reifel, Ananya Molhatra, Coreen Simpson, and Jessica Kagan Cushman in a real and powerful way. From Russia, through Europe and the Middle East, to America, Linda built a truly boundless community, connected by their love of the arts, and through her commitment to empowering women everywhere.

Jewelry designer Alice Cicolini (Photo by Agenda Brown at Studio Marvelry) 100 women of jewelry by Linda Kozloff-Turner
Jewelry designer Alice Cicolini (Photo by Agenda Brown at Studio Marvelry)

A Rendition of 100 Creative Voices

Through her conversations with the 100 women, Linda sought to shed light on a common issue for designers in the beauty field—the desire to portray a certain image, just like their product, a polished version of themselves. And to disclose the truth—that simply is not who the designer, artist, or entrepreneur is, not in full at least.

Still, it is something worth spending a moment contemplating too, as part of a wider story. As an empowering experience that sends the message to young women that, despite struggles and obstacles, it is possible to overcome and achieve. Just like many of the inspired creations, usually handmade, there is beauty in a crack or a fissure—after all, there is where light can come through.

100 Women of Jewelry is a beautiful rendition of the voices and creativity of 100 inspirational female jewelers. All with a shared passion for the arts. Telling their individual stories. And expressing their unique visions. A wonderfully empowering gift to creative women around the world. Add 100 Women of Jewelry to your library or gift it to your jewelry-loving friends – for sale !

koket goddess mirror hand gold

VITAL VOICES: 100 Women Using Their Power to Empower

Edited by Alyse Nelson, Foreword by Amanda Gorman, Paintings by Gayle Kabaker. Published by Assouline

vital voices 100 women using their power to empower

The other book sure to inspire you is Vital Voices: 100 Women Using Their Power to Empower edited by Alyse Nelson. Vital Voices is filled with keen testimonies in the first person. Voices of the women that shaped much of the world we live in today. Females who used their voices to make the ones of others heard, empowering women across all industries and places.

In 1997, a project called Vital Voices was starting to make a sound, telling the stories of pioneering women redefining— and progressing—leadership around the world. Today, the network of 18,000 women leaders across 182 countries and territories aims at scaling and accelerating impact through expanding skills, connections, and visibility and identifying those with a daring vision for change, providing them with tools to make that vision a reality.

We don’t fear the day she steps into the light
Because we are with woman every step of the fight
We clear her way
We don’t fear the day
Because it is her strength, her story, and her spirit,
That inspires other vital voices to speak up when they hear it.

Looking to further its mission of being heard, in 2020, Vital Voices decided to be seen as well—or actually, read. So Alyse Nelson was charged with editing an inspired title, Vital Voices: 100 Women Using Their Power to Empower. And so became the beautiful celebration of global female leaders and their candid, personal stories, with beautiful illustrations by Gayle Kabaker, and an inspiring foreword by Amanda Gorman. The notorious Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, Hillary Clinton, and Malala Yousafzai are some of the names (and faces) you will find in this book and the exhibition accompanying it.

female voices empowering Manal Al-Sharif is a courageous activist who defied a cultural norm and was imprisoned after deciding to film herself driving in Saudi Arabia. She led a national campaign for women’s right to drive.

Manal Al-Sharif is a courageous activist who defied a cultural norm and was imprisoned after deciding to film herself driving in Saudi Arabia. She led a national campaign for women’s right to drive.

Not only is this work truly inspiring. But it is also insightful and compelling as one learns by individual, one-of-a-kind testimonies by women who challenged the status quo. Who did not let historic challenges hold them back, paving the way for those who may wish to follow. While each woman is truly unique in her groundbreaking path and narrative when these 100 female voices come together, their impact is accelerated, their reach is widened, and their power becomes limitless in transforming women’s leadership across cultures, sectors, and generations and how it is perceived.

So, whatever your message to the world might be, and whatever your passion is—from design to social activism or poetry—remember that a little girl somewhere might hear it and just feel like anything is possible. To cite the exhilarating Amanda Gorman, “it is how our power empowers others that makes women’s voices so vital.”

Words by Rita Rodrigues
On Our Shelf: 100s of Empowering Female Voices Originally Appeared in Love Happens Volume 5
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