Materials & Sourcing
I use two different sources for metal: Certified Recycled and Certified Fairmined.
Recycled Metal: Metal that is from a previously owned piece of jewelry, or sometimes even electronics and dental work, rather than from newly mined metal. After the metal has been properly melted down, “cleaned” to take out any impurities, and re-alloyed at the refiner, the metal is ready to be made into something new. The quality and value of recycled metal is exactly the same as newly mined metal, but using recycled metal is a great way to ensure that you aren’t supporting any unethical mining practices that could possibly have social and environmental consequences (although it is very important to support small scale mining operations that are being responsible - read more about Fairmined metal below)! The metal vendors I work with are very passionate about being responsible. Not only is their metal certified recycled, but they also have very strict regulations for their refining, processing, and manufacturing procedures. Read more about recycled metal here.
Fairmined Metal: Metal that has been responsibly mined by small-scale artisanal miners that have met strict requirements to obtain their certified Fairmined label. These standards are set by Alliance for Responsible Mining (ARM) in an attempt to improve trading conditions and environmental sustainability for mining organizations in developing countries. Read more about Fairmined metal here.
I only work with gemstones that are natural and either recycled or have some form of traceability.
Recycled Gemstones: Recycled gemstones are simply stones that are taken out of previously made jewelry. They remain the same quality and value as before (sometimes if they are chipped or worn-down, they will be re-cut or re-polished), but can now be appreciated in a new design. Many antique stones have specialty cuts that are no longer being produced, giving even more history and meaning to the jewelry.
The vendors that I work with for recycled gemstones are certified by SCS Global Services as being certified responsible sources, providing 100% post-consumer recycled gemstones. They are dedicated to being responsible and passionate about learning the history of the jewelry that the stones come from.
Traceable Gemstones: I try to find as much information as possible about gemstones to guarantee that they are ethically sourced. Gathering information on gemstones is extremely difficult (the stones go through several different hands after being mined), however I try to find out as much information as possible about it’s journey from mine to market. If possible I always try to research the country of origin, specific mining site, trading information, and where the stone was cut. If I’m unable to find sufficient information, I simply won’t use the stone. I proudly share all stone origin information whenever possible!
The gemstone dealers that I work with are leaders in the industry for creating new mining, trading, and cutting standards. One vendor in particular, has created their own grading system for levels of traceability and will tell you exactly which tier your stone fits into.
Read more about Made Line Jewelry's ethos and sustainability here.