At Restrung Jewelry, we really do believe in karma, and in the idea that everything in the universe is connected. Without getting too "new-agey," let's just say that we feel like it's in our best interest to be conscious about where are materials come from and how our profits are used. That being said - Restrung is committed to producing handcrafted jewelry that whenever possible - are made from materials that are recycled, ethically-sourced and/or eco-friendly.
So, what exactly does that mean to us?
For starters, let's talk about our sources! The foundation of each piece that we create is made with a string donated by one of our wonderful musicians. These strings come from a variety of instruments, and are either broken, worn-out, or sometimes simply unused by the artist. We clean and polish the strings to get them looking shiny and new again - but that's just the beginning.
Next, we scour local flea markets, yard sales and junk shops for quality vintage materials, such as vintage branch coral, turquoise, pearls and other stones that can be used in our designs. We figure it's better to repurpose old, broken and unwanted jewelry than have it end up in a landfill....one man's trash is another man's treasure, right? We couldn't agree more!
Finally, there are some materials that we have to purchase, and here is where our real detective work comes in. Most jewelry-making supplies and semi-precious stones are produced in China, India, Indonesia and South America - and often, these materials are procured in hazardous mines or manufactured in sweatshops, using child-labor and/or forcing laborers to work in squalid conditions that most Americans would never allow. To that end, we've been working to develop relationships with local vendors and international manufacturers that operate under fair-trade arrangements and/or adhere to safe and ethical working conditions as set forth by the the International Labour Organization ILO (A specialized agency of the United Nations) and the Ethical Trading Initiative's ETI Base Code.
It's not an exact science, but we are striving to be as eco and ethically conscious as we can. We know that our efforts will only make a small impact on the problems of globalization - but you've got to start somewhere. And if more consumers would demand that products be eco and ethically-sourced, we could create real, lasting change...just remember - it all starts with YOU!