Created in 2016 by owner, freediver and marine conservationist, Etoile Smulders, Found At Sea is an independent jewelry label based in Bali, Indonesia. Aimed at raising awareness about the plight of sharks worldwide whilst empowering fellow women of the sea, the theme of coexistence lies at the heart of the brand. “My life revolves around the ocean, everything I do ultimately bring me back to the sea.”
Having been born and raised in ground zero of the shark fin trade, Hong Kong & China, Etoile was exposed to the cruel industry at a very young age. Her earliest memories of scuba diving the reefs of South East Asia at 9 years old are plagued with images of dead finless sharks scattering the reefs. Since then, it has become her life mission to aid in the conservation of these incredible creatures.
Starting off by creating simple hand made shark tooth necklaces from fossilized shark teeth she found, Etoile strived to create something that would always remind her of what she respected most and whom these oceans truly belonged too - sharks. Eventually, her work caught the attention of fellow divers amongst her community in Indonesia and she started making custom pieces for other shark lovers. The pairing of fossilized shark teeth with opals came naturally. As her birthstone, Etoile has always been drawn to the uniqueness of each opal and mesmerized by the natural resemblance of ocean patterns in blue boulder opals.
Only fossilized shark teeth are used, meaning everything is 100% cruelty-free. Each piece is handmade using ethically sourced materials and designed with intention. The Takuaka Ring range is designed with the sentiment of connection - to help you stay connected to the ocean, no matter how far or landlocked you may be at that time.
10% of all sales goes to grassroots shark conservation organizations and projects in Indonesia.
Etoile was initially exposed to Indonesia’s unique role in the global shark crisis during her years living on a boat and sailing throughout Indonesia. Currently , she is heavily involved with shark conservation work within Indonesia and China. Her work focuses on mapping the ever-evolving shark fin trade whilst identifying locations where loopholes in policy are being exploited and working towards developing effective management plans that benefit both the livelihoods of communities as well as sharks.
She is currently busy finishing her Marine Biology degree at the University of Auckland and will go forth to continue onto a Masters in Marine Conservation. To learn more about her work visit her personal website HERE