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When singer/songwriter Caitlin Crosby came up with the idea for her Downtown LA-based jewelry company, The Giving Keys, she wanted to do more than just make jewelry. She wanted to inspire, make a difference, and give back. The result was an inspirational line of jewelry that features old, discarded keys engraved with empowering words like hope, dream, and courage. But that's not all: Crosby added a charitable spin to the company by employing homeless individuals in the community as a means of helping them get back on their feet.
Celebs fans like Taylor Swift, Vanessa Hudgens, Selena Gomez, Julianne Hough, and more have all been spotted sporting their own inscribed gem around their neck. The brand's latest good deed was a collab with the upcoming The Good Lie film starring Reese Witherspoon. Together, they launched the #givegood campaign that challenged everyone to carry out a random act of kindness and share their story via social media. With such an inspiring, do-good attitude, we couldn't resist checking in with Crosby to find out what sparked the idea for the line, which key is her fav, and more.
Whitney Port wearing a necklace from The Giving Key's upcoming Rebel Collection
Where did the idea for The Giving Keys originate?
I was passing through NYC on my music tour for my first album in 2008 and it all started with a New York hotel room key. I wore the key as a necklace and had the idea to start engraving old, used keys with inspirational words. [I] realized that in a way we are all like these keys—unique, flawed, and scarred. Once [the key has served its purpose], I [encourage] people to pay it forward to inspire others.
Wanting to add a charitable dimension to the business model, I found the missing link when I saw a homeless couple [Rob and Cera] sitting on Hollywood Boulevard holding a sign that read: "Ugly, Broke, & Hungry." I took them out to dinner and discovered that Cera made jewelry—this was my a-ha moment. Rob and Cera joined the team and started engraving Giving Keys the next day. In March of 2013, The Giving Keys began partnering with Chrysalis to help find more employees who were trying to transition out of homelessness.
Why is it important for you to inspire others through your jewelry?
It's important because I wish I could go around the world, like these keys, and encourage everyone going through a hard time.
The Giving Keys's precious metals rose gold snake chains ($132)
Is there a particular key design that is your favorite?
The precious metals rose gold snake chain—that's my everyday go-to. We are [also] about to release our Rebel Collection, which is the perfect statement piece to spice up any outfit.
What's your favorite inspirational word or quote?
[It's a] quote by Mother Theresa [that says]: "Don't wait for leaders. Do it alone. Person to person."
What are some of your favorite places in LA? Where do you like to shop?
My favorite place to eat is Eveleigh. My favorite places to shop are Pop Killer and Zara, two opposite types of clothes.
What's next for The Giving Keys?
Apparel, hats, scarves, candles, restaurants, blankets—you name it.
· The Giving Keys [Official Site]