An entrepreneur and professional artisan since the age of 10, Beacon Hill teen Marlie Kass launched her own company Smart Girls Jewelry in 2015 in reaction to watching a TV commercial that suggested girls should abandon intellectual pursuits and athletics in favor of more “girly” endeavors. But instead of being portrayed as one-dimensional female stereotypes, Marlie wanted other girls to know they can be beautiful, and love math and sports, or embrace the arts and science.
To this end, Marlie, now 14, crafted a line of Boston-themed necklaces, include one with a running shoe and daffodil, as well as another with a university building and a duckling.
“I was born at Mass. General Hospital, and love growing up on Beacon Hill,” Marlie said. “These Boston-based necklaces highlight some of the unique features that make Boston such a special place to live.”
Marlie’s other necklace configurations include Sporty Smart, Bookworm and Math Mind. Some pair charms, such as a soccer ball and a calculator with a glass gem, “allowing girls to project to the world their many strengths and abilities,” she said.
Blackstone’s of Beacon Hill has served as the sole distributor of Marlie’s necklaces from the inception of Smart Girls Jewelry.
“We’ve been proud to carry Marlie’s line of inspirational necklaces since the beginning, along with the many other local maker lines available in our store,” said Jennifer Hill, owner of the boutique gift shop at 46 Charles St. “We’ve found that both locals and tourists really appreciate the unique offerings of local makers like Marlie when searching for that special gift. Marlie’s necklaces are truly special, like Boston, and we are excited to be the sole distributor of her Boston necklaces.”
Exclusively for the Beacon Hill Civic Association’s Fall HillFest, the nonprofit’s annual block party that returns Sunday, Sept. 22, from noon to 4 p.m. to Mt. Vernon Street between Charles and Brimmer streets, Marlie has designed a limited-edition Beacon Hill-themed necklace with different gem-color options to sell at Blackstone’s on the day of the event.
“The Beacon Hill necklace is a special design with a door that represents not only Beacon Hill, but opening the door to opportunities, and the tree, which, along with another great visual representation of [the neighborhood], also indicates love for and respect for the natural world around us,” she said.
Marlie will donate 10 percent of her proceeds of her in-store sales from Sept. 22 to the Civic Association while Hill is matching the gift by pledging an additional 10 percent of all Blackstone’s proceeds that day to the nonprofit.
For more information on Smart Girls Jewelry, visit http://smartgirlsjewelry.com.
For more information about Blackstone’s, visit https://www.blackstonesbeaconhill.com/.