Here at the LilyEmme Jewelry studio, we try to be different by being as "green" as possible and crafting precious metals jewelry with the highest attention to quality and endurance. You won't find flimsy cheap jewelry here, but rather, sturdy and significant pieces with high quality that is immediately perceptible.
While no jewelry item can be labeled as having no environmental impact whatsoever, we are constantly searching for ways to leave a smaller carbon footprint in an industry that can have many dark sides. We wish to provide full disclosure to help you feel confident in shopping with us.
Using sustainable and ethically sourced diamonds is of the utmost importance to us. Our diamonds are conflict-free and our diamond melee comes from Canada where they are mined to the highest environmental standards in the world. Canadian origin melee diamonds are mined in accordance with the principles of sustainable development and they have provided social benefits to the northern communities and have brought important economic prosperity to their region. Once mined, these Canadian diamonds are then cut in a BEM certified cutting facility in India, with a tracking system guaranteeing traceability up to the mine. This guarantee is based on a written guarantee from the supplier of these diamonds.
LilyEmme supports the Kimberley Process, an International process that tracks and certifies diamonds as conflict-free. In April 2003, congress and the President of the United States passed a law adopting the Kimberley Process that requires all US diamond retailers to buy diamonds from manufacturers who have documentation warranting that the merchandise was obtained through legitimate channels. Today, the US Customs Service actively enforces the Kimberley Process requirements as diamonds enter United States ports. LilyEmme works with diamond dealers who are certified by U.S customs to import conflict-free diamonds.
The Kimberley Process ensures that diamonds are:
Exported and imported with a government validated Kimberly Process certificate stating the diamonds are conflict-free.
Transported between signatory countries in a sealed and tamper-proof container.
Sold with a statement from the seller (known as a warranty) on all invoices guaranteeing that the diamonds being sold are conflict-free.
You can read more about the Kimberly Process at www.kimberlyprocess.com.
We use natural gems (unless otherwise noted) that are sourced from reputable dealers who adhere to strict laws and regulations regarding what countries their gems are sourced. Some countries have a history of unethical human rights abuses and we would like to avoid using gemstones from those regions.
Lab-grown gemstones are an environmentally friendly option in that they do not require mining nor is the drinking water polluted with heavy metals used in the traditional methods of gem extraction. Lab-grown gems are often an affordable alternative to genuine gems. The lab-grown gemstones that we use are cultured in much the same way you would culture a pearl. Natural ingredients are placed in an environment created to duplicate nature. Once the required combination of chemical and environmental factors is created, gemstone crystals grow over the course of about a year (the exact length of time depends on the variety). As a result, lab-grown gemstones are not synthetic or "imitations" as the crystals grown have physical, chemical, and optical properties that are identical to those found in nature. Lab-grown gemstones are usually free from inclusions thus they are stronger and less susceptible to breaking. It's very difficult to tell the difference between a genuine gem and a lab-grown gem. We will always disclose when we use lab-grown gemstones and we are always happy to offer lab-grown and genuine options by custom request. You can read more about our lab-grown gemstones from our supplier here.
Using recycled metals is the most important quality in our jewelry line and we do so whenever possible. We work with select metals refineries who offer 100% recycled metals, such as Hoover & Strong, a company recognized for their high environmental standards including pollution prevention and minimization. We recycle all of our scrap metal as well. Recycled metals go through rigid purification processes so there is no need to worry about contaminated metals in your jewelry. The only jewelry item that we can't absolutely confirm as recycled is our chains.
The LilyEmme Jewelry Studio is a minority and woman-owned small business operating in Seattle, WA. We love supporting our local economy, such as by using a local small casting company here in Seattle to help with many of our designs. All of our products are American-made and always will be.