Smokey Fringe dangles by Golden Eye Designs
Azurite, Garnets, 24kt gold, amber yellowy ish fire polished crystals, a symmetrical cones. 10” dangle. Elders in her hometown called her "Gold Eye". Vashti Etzel is a Shuhta/ Kaska Dene woman and a member of the Wolf Clan. Born in Fort Smith, NWT, Vashti spent her childhood in Ross River, Yukon. Raised in part by her grandparents, Vashti grew up on the land and was immersed in stories passed down by the family. At sixteen, she dreamed of becoming a well-known artist, but she also had an interest in earth science. After graduating from high school, Vashti attended Mount Royal University with the intention of starting a business that would create on-the-land jobs for her people. The birth of her first child renewed her passion for art and inspired her to continue her late grandmother's legacy in traditional crafts. A self-taught artist, Vashti draws creative inspiration from her grandmother, her Dene roots, and the land, and is motivated by a desire to preserve her Indigenous heritage and culture. Vashti enjoys sewing for family members, especially her three sons (who will be forever adorned in her creations). In 2016, Vashti shared a beaded poppy she'd made on social media. The orders for poppies and custom moccasins that followed led to the creation of Golden Eye Designs. Vashti also makes jewellery that features materials from the land.