WHEN jewellery designer Keiko Uno saw her dear school friend show enormous spirit and strength after suffering from breast cancer and undergoing a double mastectomy, she desperately wanted to help fight the disease.
Turning to her passion and life’s work, she created mother of pearl cufflinks – drawing on her love for the ocean – with part proceeds of every sale going towards the cause.
“My friend had cancer in one breast and because she has children – and didn’t want to risk not being with them – she had the second breast removed to limit the chance of it spreading,” Uno said.
“It brought tears to my eyes, seeing her having to make such a courageous decision like that.
“She has been so positive and inspirational in the way she has handled the news and treatment.”
The limited edition unisex cufflinks can be spotted on several Aussie celebrities, including Rove McManus, Lisa Wilkinson, Karl Stefanovic and Richard Wilkins.
Available in square, round, rectangle and oval shapes, they each boast a glamorous white, grey and pink colour scheme.
“White is a symbolic colour of hope and a clean bill of health, the grey ties in with my branding – the charcoal colour of the Japanese ink – and pink is representative of the foundation,” Uno said.
“I’ve reached 44 per cent of my target, which is to raise $7000.
“Every time I make a sale I put 25 per cent of proceeds into the fund.”
Living across from the ocean provides plenty of inspiration for the designer, who embraced jewellery making 20 years ago.
“I walk my spoodle Harley on the beach every morning,” Uno said.
“I also do a lot of scuba diving and take underwater photos to capture what I’ve seen. I then go back home and sketch the images up and create my pieces.”
To buy a pair of the cufflinks, email keiko@keiko-|jewellery.com, or visit Aspects of Kings Park or Yallingup Galleries.