I’m committed to ethical jewellery making, creating beautiful animal inspired jewellery while protecting the natural world.
I believe that, as a jeweller, I have a responsibility to take care of the earth that’s home to the creatures I love. Because of this, I’ve carefully considered each step of the making process – from the initial design to the moment you open your jewellery box to peek at your new keepsake.
All Elouise Makes jewellery is crafted from recycled silver or gold, and every element of my packaging is completely recyclable or biodegradable.
Transparent, sustainable, ethical
One of the most crucial aspects of ethical making is supply chain transparency – knowing that from mine to market, all the materials I use are sourced and processed in the most ethical and sustainable way.
I have carefully chosen all the materials that go into my jewellery and packaging, from suppliers I trust. As well as the recycled metals to make your jewellery, I use:
Chemical free jewellery making
In mainstream jewellery, strong acids and other chemicals are used to clean the metals ready for sale. These are not only unsafe for the jeweller, but harmful to the environment.
Elouise Makes jewellery is cleaned using citric acid – a completely safe, organic, non-toxic and non-corrosive liquid – just one part of what makes your jewellery a safe and ethical choice.
What’s the alternative to ethical jewellery making?
Most of the metals used in jewellery making – including silver and gold – come from areas of the world where low wages, unsafe working conditions and environmental destruction are commonplace.
94% of the total carbon emissions produced during the creation of a silver ring come from the silver mining process.1
In the making process, acids and other harmful chemicals are used and packaging materials are often neither recycled or recyclable.
My aim is to do all I can to reduce the impact on the environment while creating beautiful and wearable jewellery that you’ll cherish for years to come.
1 – Applied Environmental Research Journal – Greenhouse Gas Emission in Jewellery Industry: A Case Study of Silver Flat Ring, P.Usapein, C. Tongcumpou, 2016
The nitty-gritty on ethical, sustainable jewellery and packaging
Bespoke pieces are made from recycled sheet from the Cookson Gold ‘Eco’ range. Cast pieces are made from recycled grain from Umicore and cast by VIPA designs.
Unfortunately, I have not been able to source precious metal findings that are made from recycled silver or gold – this includes any chain, clasps, jump rings, earring hooks, earring posts & backs, stick pins & pin protectors, and cufflink fittings. However, I only buy these findings from Cooksongold, who are a member of the Responsible Jewellery Council.
Cooksongold have their own Corporate Social Responsibility Policy, which you can read in more detail here.
The paper covering the outside of the box is new, and the whole box, including the gold ‘Hot-Foil’ logo, is fully biodegradable and recyclable.
There’s a misconception that foil can’t be recycled, however on researching I found that, as my foiling is so incredibly thin – less than 2.5µm (microns) thick – it completely dissipates in the recycling process.
The foam filling is a compound made from Polyurethane-ether foam, Viscose flock and binder and is also recyclable. You may want to keep your box to keep your jewellery looking beautifully clean and shiny, but if you would like to recycle it, either send it back to Elouise Makes (for a cheeky 10% off your next order) or put the box in your cardboard recycling bin and the foam in the plastics recycling bin.
They’re made from 75% recycled material and are fully recyclable and biodegradable. (Biodegradable means you can pop it in your home compost bin or use it for no-dig beds on the allotment!)
When I run out of these boxes I’ll be looking for more reusable boxes or ones made from 100% recycled materials.
I choose to use Printed for the thank you notes I pop into your parcel as they’re committed to reducing their impact on the environment. As well as reusing ink cartridges and investing in new print technology to help save paper, they are a zero to landfill site. 95% of their waste is manufactured back into recycled products and the remaining 5% is converted into Refuse Derived Fuel.
My thank you cards are recyclable and chlorine free, are made from 100% post-consumer waste fibres and are FSC certified. (I use Recycled Uncoated).
I source my wood wool from Wood Wool UK because they only buy timber from well managed forests and other controlled sources permitted under FSC® rules.
You can reuse your wood wool in lots of ways: for sending a parcel, using in a gift hamper or making your own handmade plush toy (wood wool was traditionally used as stuffing for teddy bears!)
If you don’t want to use it again – it’s biodegradable!
This means that when you buy Elouise Makes jewellery as a gift, the postal box will still look brand new (no postage stickers or address written on them) and you can wrap up and gift the jewellery in the same box. It also means that whoever receives the box can reuse it – however they please!
This is made from brown 100% recycled kraft paper saturated with a latex in aqueous solution and a natural latex-based adhesive. The tape is degradable in landfill, is fully recyclable and doesn’t need to be removed when the boxes are recycled.
No need to remove these stickers from the biodegradable brown parcel paper that you’ll receive your jewellery in – you can just put the whole thing in the recycling or the compost bin!
I will continue to do my very best to be open and transparent in my ethical making, so that you can shop with confidence, knowing that your animal inspired jewellery is playing its part in protecting the natural world for generations to come.