Local jewelry designer launches cancer awareness line

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Houston jewelry company Golden Thread has teamed up with Stand Up to Cancer to launch a cancer awareness line. (KTRK)

Jennifer Welker, the owner of Houston-based jewelry company Golden Thread, spent several years as a neonatal nurse helping others. When she founded Golden Thread, she always wanted to find a special way to give back -- and she found her answer close to home.

Her designs are for the everyday woman.

"It's a lux line, a little bit of a mix of personalized jewelry and things you can wear every day," she says.

Because the company has grown so much, Welker knew she needed to bring on more designers last year, and she didn't have to look far. Her sister-in-law Victoria Welker and Victoria's sister Nicole Pontbriand were ready for the challenge.

"My sister and I are best friends, and having Jennifer, who is like a sister-in-law to me, has been such a fun experience for the three of us to get down and collaborate together," explains Pontbriand.

Shortly after joining Golden Thread, Welker and Pontbriand's dad was diagnosed with cancer for a second time -- this time, Hodgkin's Lymphoma.

"It was really hard to see our dad, who is our rock, and know he needs to face this difficult challenge ahead," says Pontbriand.

After seeing what their dad had to go through with chemotherapy, they knew they wanted to do something to help others. They asked Welker if the team could create a line to pitch to the charity Stand Up to Cancer, and she immediately said yes.

"The mission behind Golden Thread is, of course, selling beautiful things, but there's a greater purpose to it," says Welker.

"Each piece of jewelry is like wearing a badge to symbolize the fight against cancer, to fight to end cancer and change the story of cancer and to survive, and that's ultimate goal. So, each piece of jewelry has an arrow to stand up to cancer," explains Pontbriand.

And each piece of jewelry with an arrow has a special meaning.

Once finished, they shared their hard work with their dad, Tom Magliaro.

"When I saw they aligned themselves with the mission of making people aware of cancer being treated, giving people hope and stand up to cancer, it was an awesome feeling," Magliaro says.

Magliaro just now finished his cancer treatments, and he's ready to cheer on his girls. Golden Thread is the exclusive jewelry for Friday's Stand Up to Cancer fundraiser.

"Being their father is a privilege, but I am so proud of their creativity and how they were able to bridge their creativity to an outreach program like this. I was so touched," he says.

"To be able to do something for him and know that money is specifically going to help him and others, it means more than I could ever explain," says Victoria Welker.

Twenty percent of all sales on the Stand Up To Cancer line goes to the charity. Golden Thread is also giving abc13 viewers a 20% discount on these pieces throughout the month of September, just use the promo code KTRK.

You can watch the Stand Up To Cancer special tonight on abc13 staring at 7pm.
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