For centuries, jewelry has long been a favorite gift or indulgence for many people. Lovers often symbolize their love through the giving of precious, bejeweled adornments. Unfortunately, those beautiful masterpieces have often come with a heavy price not only for the environment but also for the workers who help to provide the metals and stones necessary to create them. In this author’s search for eco-friendly jewelry makers, three particular jewelers who seek to operate businesses that are environmentally friendly as well as uphold fair trade standards stand out.
Brilliant Earth Jewelers utilize recycled precious metals and conflict-free diamonds in order to create their beautiful works of art. The gold and platinum that Brilliant Earth uses are from such post-consumer sources as existing jewelry, industrial use, and electronic components. The sources of the diamonds are Canada and Namibia, and the workers who help to acquire these diamonds do not have to endure violence, abuse, or unfair treatment. According to their website (http://www.brilliantearth.com/mission/), Brilliant Earth also “donates 5% of their profits to help communities who have suffered from unethical practices in the jewelry industry.”
Green Carat uses recycled gold, silver, and platinum from existing jewelry that customers provide. You can submit your old jewelry to be fashioned into a new work of art for you (Green Carat will do custom orders), to receive store credit to put towards another beautiful piece of jewelry, or to make a donation to help benefit an environmental organization. Regardless of which option that you choose, you can guarantee that the precious metal from your former jewelry will become a stunning selection among Green Carat’s eye-catching collection.
Green Carat also will do eco-fundraising for qualifying organizations. More information regarding this is available online.
Moonrise Jewelry receives its precious metals and stones from fair trade and ethical vendors. The semi-precious stones are mined by hand and are closely tracked from the mine to the jewelry studio to ensure minimal impact on the environment, protection of watersheds, and restoration of the land after completion of the mining. Processing of the gemstones takes place at a model cutting factory where fair labor standards, healthy working conditions, and fair wages are the rule.
The artists at Moonrise Jewelry make their alluring masterpieces by hand in their studio on the Eastern Shore of Virginia and seek to maintain high quality standards. By doing this, they are able to contribute to their local, rural economy.
Worthy of special mention are the real orchid blossoms that are present in some of Moonrise’s designs. These lovely blossoms are coated with a durable resin to preserve their exquisite beauty. Each orchid blossom is unique and special in its own way – much like each customer who purchases one of these.
Whether you are seeking a special gift for your loved one or just wanting to find a treat for yourself, keep these three eco-friendly jewelers in mind. You can enjoy giving or receiving a sparkly adornment without worrying about harm to the environment or other people.