Chanukah is quickly approaching and while big box stores often dominate this season of giving, we encourage you to shop small. Below are 16 Avodah alumni artists and makers whose creations offer something for every beloved person in your life (even the ones who already have everything). Better yet, many of the purchases from these talented alumni artists go toward supporting social justice causes, making them gifts you can feel good about.
Here is our Avodah Gift Guide featuring 16 alumni artists, crafters, and makers using art to make a difference.
From left to right, images feature works by Avodah alumni Amy Ravis Furey, Genia Blaser, Raina Fox, Tali Levy-Bernstein, and Perri Wilson.
Jordan Aiken – Ketubot and Jewelry
While participating in Avodah New Orleans Service Corps, Jordan served at a women’s shelter. She has since gone on to work in healthcare, legal, and LGBTQ advocacy spaces. Outside of work, she is also a painter, calligrapher, and jeweler. Follow her Instagram and view her Judaic art collections here. You can also place a custom ketubah or jewelry order!
Genia Blaser – Watercolors
Watercolors and sketch prints are a specialty of Genia Blaser, who served as a Corps Member in NYC from 2005-2006. By day, Genia works as a non-profit immigration attorney and in her free time, practices watercolors, portraits, and more. All of her watercolors and prints can be found on her Instagram page at @GeniaPaints.
Jamie Diamond – Jewelry and Art
New Orleans Service Corps alum Jamie Diamond returned to New York after her service year and now works for Hebrew Union College. In addition to her day job, Jamie makes sustainable, feminist-friendly jewelry and art, primarily from upcycled watch parts, typewriter keys, recycled glass, dried flowers, and more. She also does custom oil paintings You can view and order her work on Instagram.
Sarah Farbman – Gift of Music with Personalized Songs
For a one-of-a-kind personalized gift, look no further than Passing Notes, where you can send personalized songs as gifts thanks to Avodah alum Sarah Farbman, her partner, and sister-in-law, who started the small business. According to their website, the lyricists write completely original, personalized songs customizable down to the instrumentation, style, and topic. Give them the deets, and they’ll give you the beats (and the rest of the song too)! Order a song here.
Marlana Fireman – Art by Firelight Studio NOLA
New Orleans-based writer and artist Marlana Fireman completed the Jewish Service Corps in 2017. Her shop, Firelight Studio, features spooky, fun, and sex-positive art. With postcards, packs of stickers, and framed prints, there’s a lot to choose from! She also takes commissions.
Jett George – Prints and Stickers
Jett George is a former member of our New York Service Corps cohort. As their website says, “Jett is a non-binary trans artist, activist, jewexx, and sweet Gemini baby. They’re here to make art aligned with their values of trans liberation, prison/police abolition, anti-racism, ending gender-based violence, and disability justice.” Stay up to date on Jett’s work via Instagram.
Sarah Gordon – Jewelry and Ceramics from Slow Makers Club
Sarah settled in Philadelphia after participating in our Service Corps and has since co-created Slow Makers Club. Each quarter, 10 percent of all ceramics and earring sales from the shop go to support various Black and/or queer-led organizations in Pennsylvania. You can see more pieces and stay up-to-date on new offerings via Instagram.
Raina Fox – Cards on a Mission
Former D.C. Corps Member Raina Fox’s professional background intersects with many issue areas, including sexual health services, refugee support, and LGBTQ advocacy. Raina makes and sells block-printed greeting cards (and even teaches block printing as a community-building avenue). Over the years 100 percent of proceeds from the sale of these cards have been donated to community groups advancing LGBTQIA+ rights, indigenous and Black-led social movements, abortion access, and more. This year, all proceeds will go to the DC Migrant Solidarity Mutual Aid Network to provide respite, transport, food, supplies, and more. If you don’t see something that sparks your interest, Raina also makes custom blocks for large orders. You can follow her on Instagram as well.
Laurie Herschman Heller – LH Print Shop
Laurie came to the Chicago Service Corps in 2007 with a background in art and communications. After Avodah, she traveled abroad and then made her home in Boston. She runs LH Print Shop, with designs created to “make your walls smile.”
Tali Levy-Bernstein – Bold Earrings and Clay Works
Tali was a Chicago Corps Member from 2017-2018. She is currently in graduate school working toward an MAT to teach history in Chicago Public Schools. Along with her friend, Shula Ornstein, Tali began selling handcrafted polymer clay earrings this year. The earrings are very colorful, lightweight, and affordable, making them a great gift for anyone in your life who loves bold, statement jewelry. Follow Tali and Shula on Instagram at @claystuff94. They have also just started an Etsy shop also under claystuff94.
Lauren Lowenstein – Art for Always Ketubahs
An alum of the D.C. Service Corps, Lauren Lowenstein, who has a background in social work and health care, runs ART for ALWAYS ketubahs. You can browse her gallery of original contemporary and abstract ketubahs on Instagram is a gallery of past works.
Danielle Moyal – Watercolor Stickers
Danielle Moyal participated in Avodah’s Jewish Service Corps in New Orleans from 2020-2021. When Danielle’s not doing prison abolition or environmental justice work, she’s creating adorable watercolor stickers. You can check out her shop here.
Amy Ravis Furey – Accessories by Little Furey
When she’s not running the Avodah Kansas City Justice Fellowship, alumna Amy Ravis Furey, pursues justice through craftivism. Her shop, Little Furey features handmade creations that aim to raise consciousness “one stitch at a time.” Her Instagram includes shop updates and personal musings.
Kaetlin Ritchie – Graphic Tees from Golden Willows
Kaetlin Ritchie was a D.C. Corps Member in 2015. Today, she runs Golden Willows, selling shirts with hand-drawn, collage, and photography design elements. All of Golden Willows’ shirts are made from sustainably sourced cotton. “The images are meant to inspire and spark meaningful conversation.”
Jordan Rubenstein – Affirming Merch from The Crafty Queer
Jordan Rubenstein was an Avodah Justice Fellow in New York and has been an advocate in many Jewish and non-Jewish spaces. They helped their spouse, Alister, launch The Crafty Queer, selling art and merch “for all your LGBTQ and recovery-affirming needs.” Their products range from tote bags to earrings to baby onesies. In addition to checking out their shop, follow The Crafty Queer on Instagram.
Cori Strell – Wax Wraps for Zero-Waste Food Storage
By day, Cori Strell, who completed the NYC Service Corps in 2021-2022, works at her former Avodah placement, The Brave House. With her spare time, Cori makes bee’s wax wraps that can be used as an alternative to plastic wrap. They come in 4-piece variety packs for $30 , including shipping. She also facilitates zero-waste work shops for those interested. Visit Waxbees.online
or follow @Waxbeeswraps
on Instagram to place an order.
Perri Wilson – Paintings and Sketches
When she’s not serving at Bread for the City’s legal clinic, current D.C. Corps Member Perri Wilson is an avid painter. Her collections span oil and acrylic works, as well as sketches and pastels. Perri’s available work can be purchased here. She also takes commissioned orders to turn treasured photos into paintings! To reach Perri directly, email email@example.com. Additionally, 30 percent of all proceeds from this season’s sales will go to the International Rescue Committee.
Are you an Avodah alum who creates and sells art, merchandise, or other products? Email firstname.lastname@example.org and we will add you to our directory of artists.