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Repurpose, Reuse, Recycle: Buying Diamonds is a Sustainable Practice

Oct 22, 2020

In recent years, there’s one particular trend that has come to stay and does not appear to be going away any time soon: sustainability. While it has become a hot topic recently, we’re glad to say that we’ve been ahead of the curve for almost as long as we’ve been in business at Samuelson’s. After all, sustainability is a key element of buying and selling estate jewelry.

Fundamentally, sustainability is about reducing our environmental impact. It’s about reusing materials and being thoughtful when we cannot. Part of why there has been such increased awareness around sustainability and ethics in jewelry making in recent years is because for a long time, no such thing existed. Jewelry and the process of making it was always focused on the end consumer. For centuries, we’ve overlooked the people involved in the process of making beautiful jewelry: finding and mining the gems and precious metals; treating the materials; and crafting the jewelry for it to be sold and worn.

Consider the act of mining for gemstones. Mining gemstones requires digging into the earth, which requires shifting tons of earth, just to find a single carat. How many laborers must be involved just to find a single diamond? As environmental practices have evolved with a greater understanding of the earth’s finite resources, we are beginning to see more ethical and responsible practices of mining take place. We are also seeing countries approach rules and regulations for mining and workers’ rights differently than they had in years past.

While we can’t put back something that was already mined, what we can do is make sure that we are thoughtful and intentional about how it is used. By virtue of being an estate jeweler, we can further the practice of sustainability by helping beautiful estate pieces find new homes. We may not be able to provide a narrative of the piece during its earlier years. But what we can guarantee is that in buying a vintage piece, there’s a significantly lesser impact on the environment.

Take for example, this beautiful Old European Brilliant Diamond Platinum engagement ring from the 1920s. Again, during that time, suppliers were more focused on the buyer than the labor it took to source and create these materials. So the ethics of the piece’s origin may be questionable. But in buying a vintage piece, a buyer can guarantee there’s no further significant environmental impact. We can guarantee that it will keep the materials and components of the piece from being added to growing solid waste streams. And a beautiful estate piece is given a second chance at life with someone who truly appreciates and values its beauty and history.

We’re always on the lookout for unique and quality pieces of jewelry, because we see what’s truly precious about precious metals. We’d love to help you put your stamp on sustainability by finding an estate piece that is both beautiful and meaningful to you. To get started, visit our website to make an appointment or call one of our three locations!

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