Set in Stone

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Kenetha Stanton, kintsugi, and the healing process

Kenetha Stanton stumbled upon kintsugi art several years ago, during a difficult period of her life where she experienced several intense losses. The kintsugi philosophy resonated with her, and she began visualizing how she could put back together the pieces of her life to create something better.

She was working as a life coach at the time, and she thought kintsugi could help inspire clients in the way she had been inspired. Although she had never done any lapidary work before, Stanton decided to try her hand at repairing inexpensive colored stones—agate, howlite, quartz—and offering them as pendants to her clients. “This was back before it was popular,” she explains. “I had to explain what it was.”

Her creations struck a chord with her clients, and she began selling them on Etsy to help a wider audience. Eventually, she moved away from coaching to focus full time on her art and open her online store, A Kintsugi Life.

She opted for gemstones out of concern for cultural appropriation—“they weren’t part of the original tradition,” she says. That’s also one of the reasons she opted not to try using an authentic kintsugi repair kit in her work.