Alexandra Brooke Designs: Custom Sustainable Engagement Rings That Don’t Cost the Earth

Alexandra Brooke Designs: Custom Sustainable Engagement Rings That Don’t Cost the Earth

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This submit was sponsored by Alexandra Brooke Designs. Learn more.

Personalisation of merchandise is a drawcard for a lot of consumers and relating to engagement rings, the diploma of personalisation is dialled as much as the very best degree as clients search to design a customized ring that conveys their deep love and dedication.

Custom superb jewellery design agency Alexandra Brooke Designs places a novel sustainable spin on this notion by providing clients one thing that almost all big-name jewelers don’t: made-to-order designs specializing in recycled or reclaimed diamonds and treasured metals.

Based within the mountain village of Steamboat Springs, Colorado referred to as a world class ski resort vacation spot, founder and principal designer Brooke Lawrence, sought to discover a artistic exercise exterior of the ski slopes. The pandemic offered the proper alternative, opening her as much as the creative world of bijou making and design. “Doing medical work on the hill in difficult situations will be overwhelming,” shares Brooke. “Working one other job that fosters creativity in a peaceful and nurturing surroundings is the proper steadiness for me.”

Brooke Lawrence, founding father of sustainable jewellery model Alexandra Brooke Designs.

Getting her begin within the trade by working for an additional jewellery designer, Brooke was enamored by the method of creating jewellery however was much less enthused by what she was studying concerning the mining and extraction course of. “I couldn’t proceed to work for an trade that was damaging to this Earth,” she admits. When she determined to department out on her personal, the seed was sown for the idea that lies on the coronary heart of her enterprise: veto newly mined diamonds and supply solely recycled and reclaimed ones. “I noticed how the diamond trade was profiting off of unethical and environmentally damaging practices so once I discovered about recycled diamonds I used to be hooked.”

Many individuals could have discovered concerning the points inside the diamond commerce having watched the box-office smash hit Blood Diamonds starring Leonardo DiCaprio. The movie launched a worldwide viewers to the position that diamonds can play in inflaming civil warfare in international locations like Sierra Leone. Such diamonds are mined in areas managed by insurgent forces who promote them to fund the acquisition of weaponry and gasoline armed battle, leading to bloodshed and different war-related crimes such because the kidnapping of kids for the aim of coaching them to grow to be little one troopers. Diamonds that gasoline armed battle are generally referred to as battle diamonds.

Since the movie’s launch in 2006, the trade has been below intense scrutiny with advocates demanding jewellery firms make their provide chains clear. Under strain to make adjustments and with sustainability and social duty now on the minds of many customers, the diamond trade responded with an answer of types– “battle free” diamonds.

But are battle free diamondsreally freed from battle?

Brooke explains that the time period “conflict-free” is used to categorise diamonds that haven’t been mined by non-governmental armed teams to fund violent battle. The concern with the time period, nonetheless, is that it’s too slim in focus and doesn’t consider unfair and exploitative labour practices. “Conflict free diamonds can nonetheless be mined by little one staff in unfair and really unsafe situations with no employee protections,” explains Brooke. “Conflict free doesn’t imply exploit free and I believe it’s vital to focus on this.”

The sustainable jeweler reveals that 15-20% of all mined diamonds labelled “battle free” are nonetheless mined below exploitative situations and since the true origin of a mined diamond is troublesome to trace, these unethical diamonds – roughly one in 5 of all diamonds extracted – nonetheless enter the market. There are some diamonds, Brooke says, reminiscent of Canada-mined diamonds, which can be straightforward to hint however they arrive with the next price ticket. And what about lab-grown diamonds? She admits that lab-grown diamonds are an alternative choice however “they don’t maintain their worth and take enormous quantities of power to supply.”

The mining of treasured metals reminiscent of gold and silver additionally comes with its personal set of environmental and social issues. For occasion, gold, one of many world’s most sought-after commodities and a mainstay within the jewellery trade, is extracted with the help of explosives and harsh chemical substances reminiscent of arsenic, cyanide and mercury that not solely ends in environmental destruction, but additionally results in human well being points as waterways are contaminated with heavy metals and different poisonous pollution. Furthermore, in lots of elements of the creating world the place gold mining exists reminiscent of Papua New Guinea, Philippines and Peru, exploitative labour practices and little one labour is rampant.

It is the plethora of environmental and social issues linked to modern-day mining that has led Brooke to conclude that recycled and reclaimed diamonds is essentially the most eco-friendly technique to supply diamonds. “Recycled, second-hand, pre-owned, vintage, classic – no matter you need to name it, it’s the most eco-friendly approach to purchase diamonds. They are already in circulation; their footprint can’t be remade.” Additionally, the jeweler solely makes use of reclaimed and recycled metals within the making of the fittings and mountings.

And whereas recycled and reclaimed inputs are the main target, Brooke additionally sources USA-mined gem stones for purchasers looking for one thing a bit of totally different. Sourcing domestically mined gem stones makes them simpler to hint and permits the enterprise to minimise carbon footprint while supporting different American-made companies.

As Alexandra Brooke Designs remains to be a one-woman small enterprise, clients can anticipate to obtain ongoing one-on-one consultations with Brooke who ensures a optimistic and useful expertise. “I restrict the variety of purchasers I tackle so I can provide loads of consideration to everybody I’m working with. It actually is a means of co-creation and I encourage my {couples} to speak with me persistently about what they like and don’t like.”

Most clients who strategy the jewellery design agency intend to suggest and get married, a lot of Brooke’s work focuses on customized designing engagement rings and marriage ceremony bands. Working nearly from her design studio, she’s going to spend hours handpicking one of the best diamond choices from 11 trusted distributors. Her dedication to serving to purchasers design and create the ring of their goals is unwavering, whether or not a pair has a finances of $2,000 or $15,000. The icing on the proverbial cake? Recycled diamonds and reclaimed stones are usually extra inexpensive than freshly mined stones, proving that sustainability doesn’t have to value the earth.   

With a love of the nice open air and geologist mother and father who Brooke credit with fostering her fascination with gem stones and crystals, the journey into sustainable jewellery design was seemingly destined. And regardless of launching the enterprise within the midst of COVID-19, the start-up is attracting a gentle stream of clientele. “Seeing how many individuals care simply as a lot as me about selecting to purchase issues that can profit the Earth and our future in it’s really inspiring. It’s humbling to see the aspect of humanity that actually cares.”

With the sector’s rising checklist of unfavourable environmental and social impacts, it’s hardly shocking that Brooke, an outside adventurer and nature-lover, has chosen to ascertain a jewellery design studio that in its small approach makes an attempt to proper so most of the trade’s wrongs – all whereas centering her shopper’s needs each step of the way in which.

Alexandra Brooke Designs supply a free 30-minute jewellery design session. Book here. To view a few of Brooke’s jewellery designs, click here.

 This submit was sponsored by Alexandra Brooke Designs. Specific product info is offered and confirmed with the corporate. All photographs equipped. For extra details about our insurance policies, click here.

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