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My Top Nine Moments in a Dumpster Fire Year

Stacey Bowers

 Creating the Nasty Women Unite Pin, Not Today Satan Necklace, Smash the Patriarchy Pin, and custom brass jewelry to benefit Arkansas nonprofits were just a few highlights in this feminist Arkansas jewelry maker's year. Thanks for your support in 2016!

Creating the Nasty Women Unite Pin, Not Today Satan Necklace, Smash the Patriarchy Pin, and custom brass jewelry to benefit Arkansas nonprofits were just a few highlights in this feminist Arkansas jewelry maker's year. Thanks for your support in 2016!

When I ran that "Top Nine" app on Instagram for 2016, my most-liked posts were all sad (in retrospect) posts about the garbage election. So, I chose my own top nine to commemorate the standout moments of arguably everyone's worst year ever.  Here are some of the precious moments that, for me, saved 2016 from being a completely unpolishable turd.

 

 With your help, I raised $1,295 for Arkansas Women's Outreach with my Strong as Hell Bracelet. Yay for the power of handmade feminist jewelry! 

With your help, I raised $1,295 for Arkansas Women's Outreach with my Strong as Hell Bracelet. Yay for the power of handmade feminist jewelry! 

1.) Bang-Up Betty Gave Back

Thanks to everyone's generous support of my Strong As Hell Bracelet for Arkansas Women's Outreach, I was able to raise $1,295 for the nonprofit that provides feminine hygiene supplies and support for homeless women in Arkansas. I was also able to donate $106 to AVAC (AIDS Vaccine Advocacy Coalition) in George Michael's memory through BUB sales. Throughout the year, I was able to provide auction items to support Lucie's Place, the Arkansas Symphony Orchestra, and Rescue Road animal rescue. And by partnering with Get Bullish and The Outrage, money from the sale of BUB products was donated to Planned Parenthood, the ACLU, and Malala Fund.

 

 World-famous illustrator Sally Nixon helped me bring my coffin heart pin design to life.

World-famous illustrator Sally Nixon helped me bring my coffin heart pin design to life.

2.) My First Pin

In January, Sally Nixon helped me bring my first enamel pin idea to life! Special thanks to Sally for shining up my rough draft better than I could imagine. Snag your Eternal Love coffin heart pin here.

 

 Congrats to Adam and Shelley, who used my custom handmade jewelry in their engagement. They drove to the Grand Canyon for the proposal! 

Congrats to Adam and Shelley, who used my custom handmade jewelry in their engagement. They drove to the Grand Canyon for the proposal! 

3.) I Helped With a Proposal!

Adam and Shelley drove to the Grand Canyon, where he popped the question using a handful of BUB jewelry and a stunning engagement ring. Congrats, you two! Read more about it here.

 

 I'm still so excited that I got to make dozens of these feminist handmade necklaces that say "Smash the Patriarchy" for a feminist wedding. We should all have feminist weddings. I'm always open to make feminist wedding favors!

I'm still so excited that I got to make dozens of these feminist handmade necklaces that say "Smash the Patriarchy" for a feminist wedding. We should all have feminist weddings. I'm always open to make feminist wedding favors!

4.) The Best Wedding Favors Ever

Speaking of weddings, last summer I stamped dozens of these to be wedding favors at a feminist wedding. I still die of shock and am completely flattered anytime someone wants me to be part of their big day!

 

 In 2016, I created the Smash the Patriarchy pin. This feminist enamel pin has been all over the world now and is still going strong.

In 2016, I created the Smash the Patriarchy pin. This feminist enamel pin has been all over the world now and is still going strong.

5.) Smash the Patriarchy Pin

Choosing a favorite design is like choosing a favorite child, but if I had to pick, it would be this little hammer Smash the Patriarchy pin that's closest to my heart. Special thanks to Ashlee Nobel for taking my rough draft and creating something so smashing!

 

 Thank you for voting Bang-Up Betty best handmade jewelry in Arkansas!

Thank you for voting Bang-Up Betty best handmade jewelry in Arkansas!

6.) Arkansas Times Best Artisan Crafter

Thank you, thank you, THANK YOU for voting me best artisan crafter for handmade jewelry in the Arkansas Times 2016 Best of Arkansas. It was seriously such a surprise and honor!

 

 Watching y'all post pics at the polls while wearing Bang-Up Betty handmade jewelry and enamel pins rocked my world.

Watching y'all post pics at the polls while wearing Bang-Up Betty handmade jewelry and enamel pins rocked my world.

7.) I Voted

I can't not mention the dumpster fire election. While the outcome is a nightmare I never wake up from, I still remember every wonderful second I spent in that booth voting for a woman for president for the first time in my life. Hopefully I get to do it again.

 

 Did I mention that I made this Party Hard bracelet for Andrew W.K. and gave it to him in person and fangirled when he put it on???

Did I mention that I made this Party Hard bracelet for Andrew W.K. and gave it to him in person and fangirled when he put it on???

8.) I Met Andrew W.K.

Last fall I met Andrew W.K. and gave him this bracelet. And he Instagrammed it. And he listened to me talk about my big brother. It was so party.

 

 Making this Nasty Women Unite pin was so empowering for me, and I'm so happy that this feminist enamel pin has made it onto the lapels of patriarchy smashers across the world.

Making this Nasty Women Unite pin was so empowering for me, and I'm so happy that this feminist enamel pin has made it onto the lapels of patriarchy smashers across the world.

9.) Partnering with The Outrage

A few months ago, a sweet soul named Rebecca reached out to me about her new website to promote feminist messages while funding feminist causes. It's been fantastic watching The Outrage blossom, and I'm thrilled to introduce three enamel pins I created exclusively for them. This Nasty Women Unite pin came first, and I'll be announcing the other two later this week.