Shine bright in ethical jewelry that aligns with your values
Jewelry has always been and always will be the most classic of choices for a Valentine’s Day gift for women. But wouldn’t it mean a lot more if the gifts for Valentine’s Day were ethical jewelry produced with fair labor and sustainable practices?
In a sea of fast jewelry brands with their heart-and-rose tinted options, it’s time we choose to gift our loved ones or ourselves with unique ethical jewelry pieces that support positive change for this world. So, before you go clicking on affordable factory-made jewelry gifts for Valentine’s Day this year, consider ethical jewelry gifts that are stylish, unique and affordable.
Designed to be treasured forever, ethical jewelry puts a lot of weight into maintaining transparent environmental and employment practices as well as design aesthetics. Luckily, one of these ethical jewelry brands lives on Buy Good. Feel Good. Whether you’re looking for the best Valentine’s Day gifts for women or want to treat yourself to some ethical sparkle, Daria Day Jewelry is on the top of our list for the best sustainable and ethical jewelry.
“When you want to give somebody a Valentine's gift, you want to make sure that the sustainable fashion gifts have real value and hasn't harmed anybody in the production process. You want to give them something that's unique, that's beautiful, and that has been made with so much love and care. It also means that you have made a difference in somebody's life far away,” says Farrukh Lalani, the founder of Daria Day.
Whether you’re looking for the best Valentine’s Day gifts for women or want to treat yourself to some ethical sparkle, Daria Day Jewelry is on the top of our list for the best sustainable and ethical jewelry.
Daria Day is a Canadian sustainable and ethical jewelry brand that works directly with women artisans living in a remote and improvised community in Northern Pakistan to design and market handcrafted ehtical jewelry.
Nestled at the foothills of the K2 mountain in Pakistan, the world’s second highest peak, lies Gilgit. A sparsely populated community surrounded by the world's highest mountains and some of the largest glaciers in the world outside the polar region. Its harsh conditions and unique landscape are the beating heart of the Daria Day ethical jewelry operation.
Originally from Pakistan but living in Canada, Lalani works primarily with international NGO's that implemented gemstone processing and ethical jewelry making programs in Gilgit.
"25% of the world's gemstones come from the region but they're not attributed to it...and are going out of the country illegally. But if there's a way for the local population, the indigenous population to benefit from it, then then you're giving value to the region which creates impact,” says Lalani.
“A lot of NGOs in that area were looking at how to train the community with skill sets, and the one thing that kept coming up was gemstone processing and jewelry making. The region is very rich in gemstones. I think 25% of the world gemstones (colored gemstones) come from the region but they're not attributed to it. A lot of these natural resources are going out of the country illegally. But if there's a way for the local population, the indigenous population to benefit from it, then then you're giving value to the region which creates impact,” says Lalani.
This is one of the main reasons Daria Day has continued its work with ethical jewelry in Pakistan. Wanting to benefit the local population with the natural resources found in the region helps keeps that value within. With a long history of gemstones bring smuggled out, the local communities that mine and work with these resources get that power taken away from them. A power that is inherently theirs.
Mesmerizing Stones Of Mystery
Humans have always been drawn to the beauty and mystery of colored gemstones. There is just something about these opulent stones beyond their aesthetics alone. And for Lalani this connection runs deep.
“Gemstones have always played a big part in my life. My mom, aunt and grandmother would always be talking about it. It’s something that I've been brought up with, that gemstones have a connection to you and your well-being. It's something that's very traditional in the South Asian culture. If you go to anywhere in India and Pakistan, it's very much part of the culture as well,” says Lalani.
Inspired by her connection to gemstones and the power behind them, Lalani uses them as her starting point and the ethos behind each piece. A motto of sorts, #wearyourwellbeing really is inclusive of what this ehtical jewelry brand is all about: letting yourself connect to the healing powers of each gemstone.
“I find that gemstones can really help you. I try to bring that out in our ethical jewelry. I often hear back from customers saying that the energy in a gemstone is really pure and powerful. Because our gemstones are real, we don't have glass added to it like most of gems, they are as natural as it gets,” says Lalani.
“Gemstones can really help you. Our gemstones are real, we don't have glass added to them. They are as natural as it gets,” says Lalani.
Straight From The Source
Daria Day works with local miners to source colored gemstones for their ethical jewelry. The origin of gemstones is increasingly important along with traceability and ethical sourcing, which is why they have chosen to only work with regional miners.
“The miners are a big part of our story. We don't just go and order from gemstone suppliers, we work directly with them. One of the artists in our design group actually goes to the miners he knows and he lets me know what gemstones we can source from them. We know that these gems are not conflict gems which is important because the gemstone market is very murky. And there is no way to certify anything as being a Fair Trade gemstone. That doesn't exist,” she says.
The colored stone industry is estimated to be a US$10–$15 billion global enterprise according to 2016 statistics. You can image what the number is at now. And until this industry can establish a responsible, sustainable, verifiable mine-to-market supply chain, ethical jewelry brands need to do their due diligence. With a lack of official certification from Fair Trade bodies such as Fairtrade International, Fairtrade Canada, the World Fair Trade Organization, Fair Trade USA, and Fair Trade Federation, developing Fair Trade Certified gemstones is all about creating your own mine to market custody chain.
“With no way for us to certify the gemstones, it fell on us to make sure that our ethical gemstones were responsibly sourced. Which is why we work with miners that we know or those recommended by the foundation we work with. We have a group of 20 miners that we work with directly to get our gemstones that are family run businesses,” says Lalani.
DID YOU KNOW?
The Garnet gemstones is known as the Relationship Stone. This fiery red stone can help spark passion and joy in your life, as well as attract love.
Ethical Jewelry Gifts for Valentine's Day
Each piece of ethical jewelry by Daria Day provides a sustainable livelihood for its artisans. Each piece makes a difference by breaking the cycle of poverty in the region. And each piece proves that we are all connected as humans with every purchase we make.
“When you're wearing a piece of our ehtical jewelry, you are connecting to the artisans and the miners that sourced it,” says Lalani. “So, think about that when you come to buy something this Valentine’s Day.”
So, let’s make the right purchases and make ethical jewelry the only jewelry there is with our choices this Valentine’s Day.
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