The fashion industry has come a long way in sustainability and ethical working practices, though there is still a long way to go for many brands. In the jewelry industry, ethics and sustainability have also come to the fore, focusing on fair sourcing and production of materials, particularly precious metals and gemstones.
Jewelers are now promoting responsible, socially conscious fashionable jewelry that prove that business does not have to cost the earth both literally and figuratively. Nor does it have to hurt the people who make it, with fair trade of artisan goods in exchange for fair trade and good working conditions. Here are some eco-friendly jewelry ideas for special occasions.
A wedding usually is a black-tie or a white-tie event unless the bride and the groom have decided to theme it to some movie they love. You can accessorize according to the mood of the event. Choose the colours suitable for the time and the season. In the years ahead, you may be invited to join in celebrations of the couple’s wedding anniversaries. You can combine your jewellery with the traditional and modern colours and materials for each year. A pair of 24k gold earrings is always a great choice. Especially, if they match your outfit.
A cocktail party
A cocktail party is a semi-formal event where dark colours are usual. This is the perfect backdrop for some a statement jewelry piece that stands out without being garish. Some eco-friendly jewelry brands based in Europe work with skilled artisans in Africa and Asia. The aim of these companies is to maintain a sustainable supply chain by supporting and investing in its workers to encourage independence through trade not aid. These pieces often use traditional materials, techniques and history of jewelry-making in their particular area for some truly unique pieces.
A dinner party
To avoid the risk of offending your dinner companions, ask your host about the dress code before the day itself. You do not want to appear either overdressed or underdressed for the occasion. If it is a festive event, dress up like you are there to celebrate, wearing jewelry with a little glitz and colour. You can wear a piece of eco-friendly jewelry from well-established brand names that have worked in collaboration with lesser-known artisans. Wearing a jewelry piece like this can spark conversations if you are meeting with friends you have not met yet.
A business dinner or a company party
Dressing provocatively or to make a statement may not play to your benefit. Any event related to work needs a professional look. A stunning pearl necklace with your little black dress or simple hoop earrings work well here. For men, cufflinks look sharp and professional. Choosing ethical jewelry from artisan entrepreneurs from anywhere in the world helps to build businesses, thereby ensuring a sustainably increasing income to the artists. This may be a subliminal message your company can give out by wearing such a piece at an event.
A baptism, a bar mitzvah, or other religious ceremony
Conservative outfits with equally conservative accessories are the norm for most religious ceremonies outside of weddings, but a pop of colour from a small brooch or an enamelled locket can look good. If you choose an unusual piece of jewelry, check the conventions before you go ahead to make sure it will cause no offence. Wearing jewelry from locally sourced and eco-friendly materials in designs that have universal appeal, whether it has a minimal aesthetic, or a colourful tribal design shows that you care about the future of the earth.