Watches & Jewellery

A Way Around It: Our guide to conscious jewellery around the world

Alighieri, Vieri Fine Jewellery and more conscious jewellery to put on your radar.
Reading time 4 minutes
Photo courtesy of Alighieri

The venture into the sustainability of fashion and lifestyle continues and this round, we wanna talk about jewellery! Thus we seek out four conscious jewellery brands from around the world that seek to redefine luxury with alternative materials and then some.

From New York to Germany, we manage to find quite a few precious gems that you need to take note of.

 

Scroll down to find which brands are featured:

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Alighieri by Rosh Mahtani

ALIGHIERI

Rosh Mahtani has been a favourite jeweller of millennials since she launched Alighieri (@alighier_jewellery) in 2014. Fast forward to the present day, the London-based designer has amassed a number of accolades that includes the latest Queen Elizabeth II Award for British Design. The first jewellery designer to be given the recognition, Mahtani towers above her contemporaries with her unique expertise and sustainable approach. 

Believing in creating things that last forever as opposed to adhering to trends that would be rendered irrelevant in no time, Mahtani’s practices include employing ethically sourced recycled bronze as well as commissioning local casters. Her handcrafted pieces are then imbued with Dante Alighieri’s narrative poem Divine Comedy in a sense that each item is imperfect but tells a story of whirlwind adventures and passionate mistakes.

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Vieri Fine Jewellery by Guya Merkle

VIERI FINE JEWELLERY

Guya Merkle took over the nearly century-old family business—the wholesale company Rudolf Merkle based in Pforzheim, Germany – when her father passed away in 2007. But after embarking on an eye-opening business trip to Peru and witnessing the poor working environment at a small-scale goldmine there, Merkle began steering the company in a new direction, and sourcing recycled gold and fair-trade gemstones under a new marquee Vieri (@vierifinejewellery).

She has also set up Earthbeat Foundation (@earthbeatfoundation) to bring more attention to the cause as well as to fund training programs for small-scale mining communities in Africa. The foundation enables the miners to develop healthier working practices, focusing on alternative income solutions through social businesses.

Earthbeat is presently working with 80 miners to encourage them to enter the honey business where they will be responsible for harvesting and selling their own honey.

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MiaDonna by Anna-Mieke Anderson

MIADONNA

Having discovered the dark origins of her own earth-mined diamond, Anna-Mieke Anderson set out to find a more sustainable alternative that would reduce the negative impact on the planet as well as help free children in the active conflict diamond-mining zones. She eventually founded MiaDonna (@miadonnadiamond), a label that’s earned the Green America Seal of Approval, which offers lab-grown jewels in the finest grade recycled gold, palladium or platinum.

Through its Greener Diamond Foundation, MiaDonna aims to undo the damage of unethical mining by reserving at least 10 per cent of its net profits to rebuild the land and communities affected in the conflict areas. Its dedication towards the environment, on the other hand, is demonstrated through its One Tree Planted policy where the brand partakes in reforestation projects and plants one tree for every order it receives.

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Odette New York by Jennifer Sarkilahti

ODETTE NEW YORK

With her fine art background, Jennifer Sarkilahti’s designs for Odette New York are appropriately sculptural and modern. But underneath the appealing aesthetic lies a modus operandi that gives the brand a deeper context. In an effort to maintain a small environmental footprint, Odette New York uses recycled sterling silver and recycled 14k gold in its creations, and is currently working with its casting house to come up with new methods to recycle brass.

Not stopping there, the brand accords its clientele with gift packaging options where their items will be shipped in an embossed gift box made from recycled cardboard box along with a reusable poly-bag made of low-density polyethylene and a cotton pouch. 

Odette New York also offers the eco-packaging alternative where customers may omit the gift box provided leaving only the biodegradable poly bag, pouch and recyclable packing material.

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