Love to treat yourself to ethical jewelry? You’ll adore these recycled jewelry brands!
By Marianna Tugareva
Here’s a fact that’s not so brilliant: one tiny gold ring is responsible for some 20-60 tonnes of toxic waste, contaminating water resources and threatening the lives of the people involved.
But fear not, lovers of fine jewelry: our body adornments don’t have to be that dirty, as these precious metals, gems and other rare materials can be recycled over and over again.
In fact, a growing number of eco-conscious jewellery designers are gradually making the turn towards endless possibilities of using existing materials, bewitching us with their creative visions. These recycled jewelry brands offer brand new items whose ecological footprint is minimal, but whose impact is the max!
Here are some of our favourites.
Brand New Recycled Jewelry Brands You’ll Love
1. Zefyr Jewels
Gentle winds of change in the jewellery world are blowing playfully from Australia, where adventurous designer Tanya Coelho found her passion for using recycled materials to create the eco-jewelry of her dreams.
Her company Zefyr Jewels upcycles brass and sterling silver to produce exquisite pieces, inspired by the intricately embroidered textiles of Laos’ tribal peoples, whose stories are full of enchanting spiritual symbols.
The brand’s designer Monica Ruzansky explores light in all its forms, in both photography and jewellery. She studied metalsmithing in her home-country of Mexico and later in the USA, where she currently crafts her collection with recycled metals and gemstones.
Her classical pieces with a subtle touch of ethereal sensibility emanate timeless simplicity, which works wonderfully at every occasion of everyday life and under any lighting.
Brooklyn-based sustainable jewelry designer and fine artist Jennifer Sarkilahti works in old technique of the ‘lost wax’, which is cast into metal exactly as it is carved, so that every mark made by the hand is seen in the final piece.
Made with recycled sterling silver, gold, brass and bronze, her opulent creations with rough textures are inspired by ancient architecture, traditional textiles and full pantheon of the planet-loving goddesses.
Humanitarian activist Ana-Katarina Vinkler-Petrovic seeks perfection in fine jewelry in the pursuit of her passion for social justice. This former war correspondent strives for peace through art and sustainability: her guilt-free eponymous line is crafted in the USA with recycled gold and reclaimed diamonds.
The sensual curvature of her newest jewelry collection accentuates the body with striking elegance, enhanced by a kaleidoscope of bright fair-trade gemstones – but if you’d prefer something more customised, she also makes anything from engagement rings and bracelets to pendants and earrings to order.
Of all the recycled jewelry brands here, this may be our favourite! Melissa Joy Manning recognises that most of the gold and platinum used in the jewelry industry is produced at a terrible social and environmental cost. In fact, globally, small scale, so-called ‘artisanal ‘gold mining can be the ‘dirtiest’ form of finding gold, as these miners struggle to get a fair price for the metals they produce. As a result, most artisanal miners will use cheap mercury which can be highly hazardous to not only their health and that of their families and local communities if its use is not very carefully managed.
To be safe, this well-loved jewelry designer uses only 100% recycled metals in her work. She melts down each metal to create stunning everyday accessories for the stylish woman. She also incorporates fossils and stones into her creations, and of course, any gems she sources are also either ethical or recycled, too.
This designer’s stunning jewelry is made mainly with recycled metals, minimizing the environment and reducing demand for products from the mining industry. Non-ferrous metals like gold, platinum, silver, copper and nickel are easily recycled without changing the structural integrity or quality of the metal, which can later be altered with alloys to create the perfect
Karat and colour combinations are created as desired by the customer. Many of Preshong’s clients also bring in gemstones they have inherited from loved ones and ask that they be reset into new rings, necklaces and bracelets that can be personalised and worn for decades to come.
Inspired by Nordic nature, designer Sophie Butler has created a brand that transforms the stunning setting of Stockholm into timeless and elegant jewelry.
Her chic, minimalist designs are not only handcrafted in a sustainable and eco-friendly way using premium recycled metals, but are made with the environment at the forefront, too; with each purchase (or even a newsletter signup!) a tree is planted with the Borneo Nature Foundation.