As beautiful as jewelry is, it comes with a big environmental price tag. One gold ring, conservationists say, generates twenty tons of mine waste. Fortunately, enough gold has already been mined to satisfy jewelry industry demand for the next fifty years, and much of it is available in the form of old or neglected jewelry. Likewise, you can find antique and vintage silver and gems in abundance, sparing the need for more mining and refining. Many jewelry artisans are doing their part, too, by fashioning their crafts from recycled materials and locally available beads, glass, stone, stainless steel, and wood.
Where should you start? Before you buy new, shop at antique stores, estate sales, yard sales, and specialty shops to locate quality used jewelry you can polish to look brand-new. The following companies may also meet your needs:
The best fair trade jewelry makes a big difference in saving the environment. This best fair trade designer jewelry also helps support the artisans, while giving you unique jewelry at the best price.