Valerie x Salty Gem Collection

The story behind it our new Valerie x Salty Gem Collection:


"Hey guys! I’m Valerie.
I’m half Costa Rican, I grew up going to school in both the US and in Costa Rica. I learned my ABC’s in English and Spanish at the same time, so I’ve been bilingual my whole life. Since I was born, I spent extended amounts of time in the tropics, which created an everlasting love for all things beach. Visiting Costa Rica multiple times per year was amazing and still is, travel is something I’m very grateful for. But I didn’t just want to visit a tropical “vacation” destination, I wanted to fully live in one.

So three years ago, I followed my childhood dream of moving to Hawaii. I wanted to call the beach my home, I wanted to get out of my comfort zone. I needed something new and adventurous, something that I did on my own, for myself. So I packed up all my swimsuits and moved to the island of Oahu.

As soon as I arrived, I was filled with happiness and joy. I finally connected with myself and became more confident in the person I am. I’ve met some of my best friends here in Hawaii, like Kristan, who then started this amazing brand, The Salty Gem. I fell in love with the island, I fell in love with the lifestyle, and I fell in love with my person, my boyfriend Anastas.

So here I am, continuing to make my dreams a reality. I’ve graduated from college, I own 2 businesses, I live in an apartment with my sweet boyfriend, and after 3 years on island, I feel more at home than ever.

But my first home will always be Costa Rica. The sights, the smells, the people. It’s such a unique country, and I’m grateful to have a piece of it with me, even here living in Hawaii. When Kristan and I were talking about creating a collection together, I immediately knew I wanted to name all my pieces in Spanish. We started creating, and I sketched up all my ideas in a matter of minutes. I created a handful of singular pieces, but also created a matching trio set.

I hope you guys love this collection as much as I do. The beach is part of who I am, it’s my safe space, my home.

My message for you — Push yourself out of your comfort zone! Go for what you want, make your dreams your reality. It’s out there, it’s all waiting for you. Real growth and happiness come from fun experiences, connecting with those around you, and believing in yourself."