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Ethical Gemstones

What makes a gemstone ethical? It's about ensuring that the stone was sourced in a way that respected the individual and community mining the stone. The actual process of mining the stone should have practices in place that help restore the environment, and create minimal impact. 

• I have relationships with the most trusted and honorable vendors in the industry. They are able to present a clear and documentable path from the mine to market.

• My current gemstone supplier is certified by the Responsible Jewellery Council. This certification ensures that their business practices are up to date with social and environmental guidelines set by the 17 United Nations Sustainable Development Goals.

• The suppliers I purchase from are able to periodically visit the cutting factories that shape rough stones into my faceted gems and cabochons. They provide documentation and proof that ensures these best practices:
  • No child labor.
  • Adequate ventilation.
  • Available health care.
  • Reasonable work hours.
  • Fair wages.
  • Allowance for time off and reasonable vacation.
  • Compliance with local labor and pollution laws.

Why are they unique?
A grain of sand gets placed into an oyster or clam. This causes an irritation that produces a nacre coating around the sand. Months after months the layer builds and creates the beautiful one of a kind pearl. " Mother of pearl" is not a pearl, but actually the pearlescent layer inside the shell. Sara Patino Jewelry uses both pearls and mother of pearl.

How are they earth friendly?
Oysters and clams are filter feeders that remove nitrogen from aquatic environments. They incorporate the nitrogen into their cells and tissues as they grow. So throughout their tiny lives, they are significantly reducing marine pollution. The GIA (Gemological Institute of America) writes that pearls, with proper cultivation, are "nature's sustainable gem". Also, the natural water the pearl lives in must be kept clean by the grower in order for it to grow.

Why are they known to symbolize "rebirth"?
Grown from a tiny spec of sand, they show us the significance of change and growth. It looks different for all of us, but with care and attention it can result in something beautiful that effects those around us.