Creating a Sustainable Galapagos through Local Artisans

November 18, 2013

At Galapagos Conservancy, we strive to not only preserve the diverse species of plants and animals on the Islands, but to create a sustainable society that includes local residents in conservation efforts. When we met Daysi Patinio, we knew that we wanted to showcase her work and support her distinct style of conservation. A native resident of Galapagos, Daysi has seen the Island economy transform from a barter system isolated from the modern world to a thriving international tourism industry over the past 50 years. She witnessed the by-products of this expanding industry in the piles of recyclable trash that began accumulating while working with the Tourism Ministry for over 20 years, and immediately knew that she wanted to do something to help.

Photo of Daysi with her jewelry

Daysi poses with some of her jewelry on display in her shop in Puerto Ayora.

In recent years, efforts have focused on developing a local market for hand-crafted goods with a unique Galapagos identity—made by Galapagos residents like Daysi. While working full-time to support her family, Daysi starting taking jewelry and craft classes and soon became skilled in creating recycled glass and costume jewelry. She developed a passion for recycled paper bead jewelry while working with a visiting artisan from Uganda, and began experimenting with this unique art form and perfecting the special rolling technique. After nearly two years of honing her skill, Daysi was turning recyclable material into art by creating her own personalized, colorful designs. Her meticulous choice of color and bead combinations makes her jewelry exceptional, with each piece equally beautiful, innovative—and ecological.

Close-up photo of Daysi's jewelryDaysi now relies on her craft to help support her family, and each hand-made, recycled piece represents a small step toward a sustainable future for Galapagos. We feature her bracelets and necklaces on our web shop in a variety of colors, and each piece has unique accents that make them truly one-of-a-kind. Like all items in our shop, every purchase directly supports conservation in Galapagos. You can view the complete selection of Daysi’s paper jewelry here.

Daysi told us, “my creations are the perfect fusion between art and conservation.” We certainly agree, and look forward to supporting other Galapagos artisans like Daysi in their sustainable crafts that benefit the Islands.

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  1. I have carved a scaled replica of “Lonesome George” as a tribute to Him. I would like permission to post photos of my carving on the site with all of the photos of his different poses etc. If this could be possible, Please let me know and how to upload the photos. If you would like to see the photos first, that is understandable. Thank you, William A Haight

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