As a teen who picked up trash at concerts and forced my family to recycle, I was thrilled to start a jewelry business when recycled metals and conflict-free diamonds were the norm.
Great, right?! But wait, there's more... Increased transparency has led to even higher standards of accountability and better, greener business practices. Here's what I do to promote social and environmental stewardship:
- I use 100% recycled precious metals for everything I make, and work with casters who do the same.
- I seek out suppliers who use recycled metals for things I don't make, like chains and clasps.
- I use ethically sourced gems beyond "conflict-free." This big umbrella covers fair-trade, sustainable mining, worker's rights, women's rights, buying from countries with infrastructure that supports traceable mine-to-market supply chains, using lab-created gems and more.
- I use recyclable and/or compostable gift boxes, packing and shipping materials made from recycled materials. Maximum post-consumer content always wins.
- Everything printed is on recycled paper or cotton, with vegetable-based inks whenever possible.
- I minimize toxic chemicals in my studio by using natural and old school products as much as possible. Nasties are used sparingly and disposed of properly through hazardous waste disposal.
- I seek out businesses that are SCS certified to promote sustainable development.
Want more T? Here are others doing the right thing:
Ethical Metalsmiths: http://www.ethicalmetalsmiths.org
Diamond Development Initiative: http:/www.ddiglobal.org