Open House – 17 June 2021

Open House – 17 June 2021

Coloured Gemstones: Pioneering Responsible Mining

Thursday 17 June, 1.30pm (BST) online via Zoom

Want to know more about ethical gemstones?

Join our Open House discussion with two pioneering coloured gemstone companies, explore their different business models and what can make an ethical, responsible, sustainable business.

The event is free to attend but please register in advance to join us.

We are pleased to be joined by

Pia Tonna (Chief Marketing Officer at Fuli Gemstones)

Fuli Gemstones is developing the largest known peridot deposit in the world. Embracing a core ‘mine-to-market’ business model and a progressive business philosophy, it’s committed to becoming a world-class mining group. Fuli Gemstones is resolute in its offering of a consistent supply of superior gemstones with full traceability, adhering to the strictest safety standards for its mining production, and supported by active global marketing and brand awareness initiatives.

Hayley Henning (Chief Commercial Officer of Greenland Ruby

Unearthed at a pristine location in the south-west of Greenland, Greenland Ruby gems are believed to be the oldest on earth. The company officially began mining in May 2017 and has since been preparing to enter the market with this new source of rubies and pink sapphires. Each gem is mined under the strictest Northern European standards and is fastidiously tracked from the mine.

Come along to hear from our guests about how they operate and the ways in which they are at the forefront of traceable and responsibly sourced gemstones.

The session will be hosted by our own Stuart Pool; a specialist in responsibly mined and fully traceable coloured gemstones, mainly sourced directly from mines in Sri Lanka and Tanzania. He runs gem trading companies Nineteen48, Rubyfair and Crown Gems, as well as being one of the co-founders of Fair Luxury and a key member of the Moyo Gemstones Project.

About Open House

The Fair Luxury Open Housse sessions are an opportunity to get together with the jewellery community, get inspired and find support on your fair jewellery journey.

Established designers, makers, new graduates and independent businesses – whatever stage of the ethical sourcing journey you’re at, you are very welcome.

Join Fair Luxury Open House on Zoom to learn and exchange on all things relating to ethical jewellery. By nurturing a sense of human connection and sharing information we can support each other and help to focus our individual intentions.

Open House – April 2021

Open House – April 2021

April Open House: The Fair Luxury Pledge – learn more and share progress.

Thursday 29 April (BST) online via Zoom

At the time of writing almost 100 members of the jewellery industry have signed up to the Fair Luxury Pledge since January – committing to make positive changes to their business.

We’re over the moon to report this and now invite you to our second Pledge-themed Open House get-together, a chance to reflect on progress so far, trade ideas and acknowledge any challenges faced along the way.

If you have not yet made the Pledge but are interested in learning more please join us – when it comes to embarking on a journey towards responsible business, there’s no time like the present!

No matter where you’re at on your ethical jewellery journey, the Pledge exists to enable us to set realistic goals for ourselves and our businesses, breaking them down into manageable steps. It’s not necessarily about completion, but being accountable and celebrating progress.

The event is free to attend but please register in advance to join us.

WE’LL BE HEARING FROM

Attendees will be split into breakout rooms based on the main Pledge categories and themes that our Pledgees have flagged up as useful topics for discussion. These rooms are an opportunity to engage in organic chat with others about your challenges and learnings. When you register for the event you’ll have the chance to choose which room you’d like to join,

BREAKOUT ROOM CATEGORIES:

1. Metal Sourcing (Recycled, Fairmined, Fairtrade etc)

2. Responsibly Sourced Gems & Diamonds

3. Sustainable Packaging

4. Educating/Communicating with Customers

5. Working Sustainably
: General learning, strategy, understanding your business’s impact

6. New Pledges: For those yet to make a Pledge and wishing to learn more

About Open House

The Fair Luxury Open Housse sessions are an opportunity to get together with the jewellery community, get inspired and find support on your fair jewellery journey.

Established designers, makers, new graduates and independent businesses – whatever stage of the ethical sourcing journey you’re at, you are very welcome.

Join Fair Luxury Open House on Zoom to learn and exchange on all things relating to ethical jewellery. By nurturing a sense of human connection and sharing information we can support each other and help to focus our individual intentions.

Open House January 2021

Open House January 2021

For many, a new year is a clean slate; an opportunity to hatch plans and establish goals.

If you foresee 2021 as the year your business takes on a more sustainable form, you might wish to kickstart it with the Fair Luxury Pledge.

Our Pledge is a new framework designed to support you and your peers, helping you to set your intentions for a responsible business in 2021 and be accountable to your community. Pledge-themed Open House events will now run quarterly, starting this month.

Will you join the movement?

To find out how to make YOUR Pledge, “come along” to our January Open House event.

The (virtual) doors will open on Thursday 28th January at 10am (London time) / 11am (Paris time).
Open House is free to attend, but please register in advance to join us.

We know that when jewellery is produced responsibly it can provide sustainable livelihoods for all involved – from the miners of raw materials right through the supply chain to the ultimate designer or retailer of the finished piece.

As individual designers, makers, traders and educators we’ve pledged to make changes and business decisions that are driven by more than just profit. In every aspect of our work, we seek to ensure that we are achieving and maintaining a safe, sustainable and just industry for all.

We are each at a different stage in our journey towards responsible business, but we are all working on it. No matter how big or small, our collective actions will change the world.
 

Through the jewellery we create and the ways we run our businesses, those who make the Fair Luxury Pledge each promise to:

1. Conserve and restore the environment

2. Work in a way that is responsible, transparent and accountable

3. Play a role in educating and empowering others

This session will last for one 1 hour, details below:

– 15 min: Short introduction to the Fair Luxury Pledge by Anna Loucah, founder of Anna Loucah fine jewellery. Members of the Fair Luxury team will share their pledges to get participants thinking about what their own pledge might be.

– 30 min: We will go into break out rooms to enable small group conversations.
What might your pledge be? It might be something as simple as using only eco cleaning products to wash your workshop floor! Or something bigger like only using gems with a guarentee of provenance. Use the conversation to brainstorm ideas and encourage each other.

– 15 min: We will re-join the main group and each group will share some of their thoughts/ possible intentions for the pledge.

After the event you will be encouraged to fill in our Pledge form.

The aim of the Pledge is to enable you to set realistic goals for yourself and your business, breaking them down into manageable steps.

It’s not necessarily about completion, it’s more about being accountable aswell as acknowledging and celebrating progress!

We’ll follow up at the next Pledge Open House with a chance to reflect on our progress and any challenges encountered along the way. It will take place on April 29th at 10am GMT

To find out how to make YOUR Pledge come along to the Open House or sign up to our mailing list for further updates.

Diamonds – the hot topic

Diamonds – the hot topic

Alongside our autumn Fair Luxury Open House events, a series of webinars and talks on the theme of diamonds and the ethical issues and challenges faced and created by the diamond industry have been taking place across the globe. These eye-opening and positive events shine a light on what needs to change in the industry and offer possibilities for change.

kimberley process diamonds seminar

We all know that the lack of traceability in diamond supply chains is a huge issue. Knowing the origin and the path is the first step to know if diamonds are mined, cut, and processed with humanitarian and environmental considerations.
The webinar will explore how Blockchain and other emerging technologies can and are beginning to be used to help supply chains be traceable and accountable.

Other subjects addressed with open eyes and a realistic perspective to date include:  Human rights violations in the Kimberley Process, environmental destruction, the diamond industry viewed through the lens of the UN Sustainable Development Goals. The great thing is that alongside highlighting the problems are proposals for solutions and positive activities that have been implemented to date.

Thank you Chicago Responsible Jewelry Conference, Diamonds for Peace and others for creating a critical mass of content and to Human Rights Watch, The International Peace Information Service (IPIS), the Kimberley Process Civil Society Coalition and everyone who is bringing these important matters to the fore.

Open House: Diamonds – What’s Next?

The fifth Open House concludes our series on diamonds with a real­‑life look at diamond mining, human rights and the environment.

Join us on Friday 27 November 3pm (GMT)

Book your place here.

We’ll be addressing some difficult questions and challenges:

What the Kimberley Process is and what it isn’t. Flaws and potential solutions.

What it is really like on the ground; what would improve the situation? What if everyone just bought lab grown diamonds?

Our own Clara Breen and David Crump will host with guest speakers who have experience in African diamond mining and have conducted independent research in the field. Their short presentations will be followed by small group discussions, a chance to reflect and connect with others on what you’ve heard and learned.

Guest Speakers

Shamiso Mtisi         Deputy Director at the Zimbabwe Environmental Law Association and
                              Kimberley Process Civil Society Coalition Coordinator

Hans Merket           Researcher, International Peace Information Service (IPIS Research)

Chie Murakami        Founder & Director General, NGO Diamonds for Peace

find out more and register

This session will round up the Fair Luxury Open House series on diamonds and their impact on people and planet. We’ve looked at natural diamonds and mining, explored developments and challenges in the lab-grown diamond industry and faced up to some of the challenges and changes in the industry, including a hard look at the Kimberley Process. Together we are developing our understanding of the ethics of this most fascinating of gemstones and finding out about the diamond industry in relation to the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals. You can find out more about the UNSDGs here.

Get together with the ethical jewellery community and find support on your fair jewellery journey. Established designers, makers, new graduates and independent businesses – whatever stage of the ethical sourcing journey you’re at, you are very welcome.

If you enjoy regular updates from Fair Luxury, sign up to hear about or events and activities, follow us on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter.
Just click the social buttons at the top of the page.

Fashion Gets Active!

Those of us with long standing commitment to ethical sourcing have been working towards creating greater public awareness of the somewhat murkier challenges faced by the jewellery industry for some time now. It is often a difficult message to convey to an audience previously unaware that such issues exist and a tricky subject to broach with those only wishing to feel joy and hope for their own future with the purchase of that special ring.

How can something so representative of love be tainted by the struggles of those in the supply chain that created it?

Fifteen years ago, Hollywood focused public attention on the atrocities committed in the sourcing of what had become known as a ‘Blood Diamond’ with its release of a film of that name. However, since then wider public awareness has somewhat plateaued. Have we simply assumed that because there has been a film about it the issues highlighted have somehow been resolved?

We in the privileged western world are continuing to realise the power we hold as consumers but that can be overwhelming. Can we find ourselves dampened by a feeling of eco overload when everything that we choose to spend our money on seems to have some negative impact on our precious planet somewhere down the line?

Independent jewellers have long been conscientiously sharing their own best practice with their individual client bases and the number of such jewellers committed to ethical practice has grown exponentially over recent years – but it has still been a story that’s fermenting rather than exploding. Reaching a wider audience takes a louder voice.

And so, to see an entire feature in September’s edition of British Vogue dedicated to ethical sourcing and transparency in the supply chain does feel like a pretty substantial bump up the ladder.

The global fashion behemoth has again put itself one step ahead of what its readership wants before they knew they want it and dedicated a glossy 4-page spread – dripping with gorgeous jewels – to discuss, in user friendly terms, the complexities of today’s jewellery industry.

In an edition dedicated entirely to defining what modern activism looks like, Vogue UK’s Jewellery and Watch Director Rachel Garrahan digs into the many challenges facing the jewellery industry supply chain but also celebrates its many achievements.

Gold Spiral Earrings, Ute Decker

‘Now more than ever, jewellers are committing to responsible sourcing via supply chains as lucid as the gems themselves’ she writes. ‘In a global jewellery industry estimated to be worth £230 billion, there is a growing demand among consumers to be able to make ethically sound choices’

The article features sound bites from numerous long committed jewellers alongside a dazzling display of the precious creations themselves – such as those of Fair Luxury friend and co-conspirator Ute Decker. In addition to the glossy images it is also pleasing to see a number of the development initiatives and supply chain trailblazers gain recognition – including our very own, ever glamorous and fashion forward Stuart Pool of Nineteen48!

In the long game towards creating a more transparent and responsible business practice this is an encouraging indication of what can be achieved with greater consumer awareness. The continued commitment of those working in all sectors of our industry combined with our shared collaborative passion means that we can enjoy, with growing confidence, a sense that we are moving towards something that can sincerely be defined as Fair Luxury.

Anna Loucah, September 2020

Open House August

Our second Open House will take place on Friday 28th August, 4-5pm BST.
Thank you to everyone who participated in July, we hope you found it fruitful and look forward to seeing everyone who can join us next time.

This month’s theme for discussion is
Does sustainability kill the romance of selling jewellery?

Do you ever speak with your clients about the serious issues in ‘standard’ practices in metal or gemstone mining (e.g. child labour, mercury etc…) to encourage them to choose the more sustainable options? Do you find that speaking about those issues kills the romance of the jewellery buying experience?

We will have a similar format to last month with small breakout groups for the middle section of the Open House. with participants asked to have a think about three questions beforehand which we will discuss in small groups.

 

-What options do you offer your clients?

-What response have you had from them?

-In what ways have you raised this topic effectively?

 

It is free to attend but please register in advance to join us.

Here’s the link in full just in case you need it

https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/fair-luxury-open-house-tickets-116250499373

See you there!

Our First Open House

The Fair Luxury Open House is an opportunity to connect with the ethical jewellery community and find support on your fair jewellery journey.

Are you interested in more ethical sourcing in your jewellery-making practice or business? Or perhaps you’ve started on the journey, but at times it can feel like you’re swimming against the tide.

You are not alone!

Join Fair Luxury Open House on Zoom for an informal monthly get together to find support, learn and exchange on all things relating to ethical jewellery practices: sourcing, making tips, and much more. By nurturing a sense of human connection and sharing information we can support each other and help to focus our individual intentions. Established designers, makers, new graduates and independent businesses – whatever stage of the ethical sourcing journey you’re at, you are very welcome.

Our first event took place on Friday 31st July 2020, with a short introduction followed by a breakout into smaller groups of four or five people, each led by a Fair Luxury team member. We explored the challenges we have encountered, discussed progress made and covered any concerns and areas people want to learn more about. We concluded by rejoining the main group and comparing notes on what was discussed in the small group sessions.

Sessions last for an hour in total and are not currently recorded as the Open House is designed to be a space for sharing information and finding peer support in confidence. However we do intend to pick up on any areas of common interest at future events.

Open House free to join via signing up on Eventbrite and you can find details for each meeting on our featured post – so keep an eye out for monthly updates.

Tackling Racism in the Jewellery Industry

In a very short space of time, the Black Lives Matter campaign has amplified awareness of racism in its many forms and given fresh voice to the experience of injustice and inequality faced by Black people. It has also caused many to reflect on the white privilege they’d never considered and address their accountability in both unconscious and conscious racial bias. This is a historic moment and must not pass without real change being the result.

Many of you will have read Kassandra Lauren-Gordon’s open letter to the jewellery industry re. racism, originally published on 17 June and reproduced here with the author’s permission. Alongside a call to action she also recounts some of her own experience of racism during her career.

What are we and our industry doing to make change?

The activity of Fair Luxury is often associated with materials sourcing and the supply chain but when we use the work “equitable” to describe the kind of jewellery industry we want to see, it includes reflecting the diversity of our society and ensuring the colour of someone’s skin is not a barrier to entry and opportunity in the trade.

Looking at the following definition, we know that that silence and passivity will not tackle inequality or bring about change in society:
“Anti-racism is the active process of identifying and eliminating racism by changing systems, organizational structures, policies and practices and attitudes, so that power is redistributed and shared equitably.”
(NAC International Perspectives: Women and Global Solidarity from http://www.aclrc.com/antiracism-defined)

Fair Luxury acknowledges that good intentions are not enough to bring about change in our jewellery industry and we believe that, from educators to businesses to institutions, we need to proactively address and counter systemic and structural racism at all levels.

Working for equality and human rights is as important and urgent as tackling the climate crisis if we are serious about a sustainable future for humankind. Both call for action, whether we consider ourselves campaigners or not.

The NAJ and the Goldsmiths’ Company have released statements in response to the new awareness of racism, click their names to link to the statements.

Click the link for the Hardship Fund for Black Jewellers fundraising page

Click here for the Ethical Metalsmiths Social Justice Resources page

Please let us know of any initiatives or other useful links that we can include here.

Fair Luxury at IJL

[vc_row][vc_column][vc_custom_heading source=”post_title” font_container=”tag:h3|text_align:left” css=”.vc_custom_1523290770768{margin-bottom: 30px !important;}”][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row gap=”10″][vc_column width=”1/3″][vc_single_image image=”428″ img_size=”full” add_caption=”yes” css=”.vc_custom_1564614242598{margin-bottom: 30px !important;}”][vc_column_text el_class=”caption” css=”.vc_custom_1564614296186{margin-bottom: 30px !important;}”][/vc_column_text][/vc_column][vc_column width=”2/3″][vc_column_text]For 2019 at London’s annual jewellery fair we presented a series of talks covering different aspects of responsible sourcing with both practical advice and news of inspirational projects to explore how both small organisations and international collaborations can and are bringing about real change:

Gold with Heart
David Finlay, Manager, Fairtrade Gold, Fairtrade Foundation

Fairtrade Gold promises benefits for mining communities, the environment and gold-buying businesses. But what do these benefits look like in practice? And what first steps can businesses take to benefit from a relationship with Fairtrade and small-scale mining communities? This talk answered these questions and pointed towards the future direction of travel for Fairtrade Gold in the UK and beyond.

Using Partnerships to Bring Traceable and Responsibly Mined Gemstones to the International Jewellery Market
Stuart Pool, Nineteen48

Stuart presented the Moyo Gemstones project – an ethical gemstone collaboration born in Tanzania between Nineteen 48, Pact and Anza Gems to bring traceable, responsibly mined gemstones to the international market which really benefit artisanal mining communities. They are developing relationships and processes with the female artisanal gem miners of the Uba Valley to deliver their rubies, sapphires, tourmalines, and garnets from mine-to-market and working to empower women miners to work safely, mine better, improve financial security, and create stable, equitable markets for fair trade.

Responsible Sourcing for Small Jewellers: Easier than you Think
Levin Sources and Fair Luxury

This practical seminar gave actionable strategies for jewellers to develop policies and procedures to live up to their ethical commitment, transform their own business and gain a competitive advantage in a market where jewellery customers are increasingly keen to purchase ethical, sustainable and compassionate pieces.

This inclluded the steps on the journey to achieving an ethical supply chain – assessing existing suppliers and practice, drafting ethical policies, considering human and environmental impact and communicating ethical commitment to an increasingly questioning jewellery buying public. Our expert panel showed from experience how it can be done.

Rosanna Tufo, Researcher and Project Manager, Levin Sources
Susi Smither, Founder, The Rock Hound
Arabel Lebrusan, Founder, Lebrusan Studio
Stuart Pool, Founder, Nineteen 48[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row]