Del Mar teen and sister grow jewelry business

Fania Pupko, 17, and her sister Eliana, 11, make jewelry.

Del Mar teen Fania Pupko and her younger sister have shifted their jewelry business to making mask-wearing a little more stylish.

It started when her younger sister’s March birthday party was canceled because of the COVID-19 pandemic. The family thought at first that they’d be able to reschedule it for a couple weeks later, but then public health restrictions tightened and kept getting extended.

“By May, we realized she was not going to be able to have a party any time soon,” said Fania, 17, whose sister Eliana is 11.

Their business started initially with the two of them hand-making products such as necklaces, bracelets, rings and anklets. After the pandemic, they started making facemask chains that attach to the ear loops. They used supplies their mother bought during a trip to a crafts store to buy jewelry-making materials for the birthday party.

“It’s a very trendy way to keep people safe and for them to not lose their masks,” Fania said, adding that they “obviously have to pivot a lot” after the pandemic started.

Fania said she and her sister are “fashion lovers, we love being trendy.” They accept orders through direct messages through their company’s Instagram, which has grown to more than 300 followers.

“That was our escape throughout quarantine because it kept us busy, and also we would have a break from being at the house when we went to make our deliveries,” she added. “It was a little bit of an escape from everything that is going on in the world.”

The two sisters have sold more than 300 products so far.

Fania, who is busy filling out college applications, said her goal is to keep the jewelry business going as a side venture. She said she wants to study special education.

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