Nowadays, you can hardly walk down the street without hearing a distant cry about plastic straws and the horrors of using a plastic bag. But now the focus is shifting from plastics to the world of fast fashion. Big corporations are making mass-produced products for the market, hoping to entice consumers with inexpensive goods and ever changing ‘trends’. Your life, much like mine, is a microcosmic reflection of society. You’re trying so hard to keep your style relevant and on-trend, that you forget about the environmental, ethical and ecological by products of your shopping habits.
Last week saw the first ever launch of Vegan Fashion Week in the Museum of Natural History in Los Angeles. The runways were full of clothing and accessories that are striving to bring veganism into the mainstream. Not only was there a huge focus on animal rights, there was also huge importance placed on where materials are sourced. Vegan Fashion Week was an event curated by the founder of Le Frenchlab, Emmanuelle Reinda, whose statement was recently quoted by FashionUnited:
“Vegan Fashion Week is going to exist until every fashion house decides this is the norm [...] there is no room for cruelty or for ways of doing fashion that is polluting the planet.”
The new way to shop is to eco-shop. Be aware of where your items come from, who they are made by, and how they are made. A disregard to environmental consequences can have severe knock on effects. Not only for your style, but for the eco-scape. Here are the top 5 pieces of eco-luxury jewellery that you should be wearing this year. Promote a sustainable future, and shop in a thought-driven way. Buy products that are made with compassion and love.
1. Oxidized Silver Pearl Ring by Dutch Basics
I have found that, over time, what makes a piece of jewellery attractive to me is not so much its external aesthetic, but the ethics behind the design. The innovative Dutch Basics brand is based in The Netherlands, and was built in response to a growing desire for eco-friendly sterling silver and gold. The designs are then passed onto small ateliers in Portugal, who are known by the brand on a personal level. It is important to know who is making your jewellery, and you should alway shop in a fashion-conscious manner. This piece is classic and timeless, and will become a staple in your jewellery cabinet.
2. Silver Simple Band by L. SHOFF
These stunning rings are the brainchild of innovative designer Lauren Shoff, who is making a conscious effort to alter the way in which we think about jewellery. It can be incredibly hard to change the way you perceive the fashion accessory industry, but making subtle changes in the way you shop is important in catalysing this shift. Whenever you shop from now on, you will consider the impact of your purchase. Each and every single piece within L. SHOFF’s collections are handmade using 100% reclaimed and recycled materials. Everything we do has an impact on the planet, and this brand is one that believes in upholding an environmental and social responsibility. Their jewellery is versatile and chic, and this brand is paving the way to a sustainable future. From concept, to design, to execution, the entire process is eco-friendly. Even the packaging is made with the environment in mind!
3. Honeycomb And Honey Drop Necklace by In The Window
This is a piece of jewellery that stands in solidarity with conservation efforts to protect the bees. Designer Nicholas Hoogwerf finetunes his creativity in nature, and has shown a conscious desire to monitor the environmental impact of his work. Honeycomb is a hexagonal structure that is miraculously created by bees to store honey and eggs. The addition of a singular Swarovski crystal acts as a metaphor for this honey, and the commercialisation of it as a mass-consumed product. This brand is one that makes you look through the window into your own life, and gives you the power to self-reflect and monitor your own sustainability.
4. Elephant Pendant by Alexander Jewell
Conservation is a common thread between many of these eco-luxury jewellery designs. Master jeweller Alexander Jewell handcrafts these pieces to benefit the global organisation WildAid. Jewell uses eco-friendly materials to create his pieces, and his designs are well-known for raising awareness against animal cruelty. This is particularly in relation to that act of hunting, poaching, and killing animals for ivory. Your purchase of the Elephant Pendant will help WildAid to reduce the demand for ivory. Why not buy a piece of jewellery that you know will benefit, and not degrade, the environment? There’s nothing better than helping a worthy cause, and getting a luxury piece of handmade jewellery at the same time. Vegan Fashion Week was a hub for designs that promoted the same importance of conservation and protection of endangered species. Show your solidarity with the cause, and buy a pendant today.
5. Gold Classic Karma Stud Earrings by Lily Flo Jewellery
Lily Flo is a London-based ethical fine jewellery boutique that was founded by designer Diana Sherling. This is a brand that retains their core values of being ethical, sustainable and responsible in both the design and creation of their jewellery. Sherling sources the majority of materials locally, and ensures that she works directly with the source of gemstones and diamonds. Each piece is handmade with silver and gold that has been recycled in order to prevent any environmental damage. Minimalistic, clean and modern are words synonymous with the collection. This is jewellery for the forward-thinking modern day style icon that wants to make a visual and environmental statement. Stud earrings are an all time classic jewellery item. They will look stunning when paired with the matching necklace, but can also be worn and matched with any other jewellery piece from the collection.