Becky Pearce Designs

Handmade ContemporaryJewellery in Silver & Gold

eco-friendly

Recycled and plastic free packaging.

Useful informationBecky Pearce2 Comments

When I last popped onto my Folksy shop, I noticed that a few of my pieces had been added to the new “Recycled and plastic free packaging” gift guide.

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And being added (and the fact that they had created such a gift guide) made me realise that I hadn’t actually talked about my packaging much.

I’ve been really trying to make my jewellery business (along with the rest of my life!) more sustainable and eco-friendly. So in terms of my packaging here are some of the things I do:

  1. My little white gift boxes are made from recycled card.

  2. The jiffy bags I use for sending out are the “green” version, so no bubble wrap padding, just extra layers of paper. They don’t feel as padded, or look as pretty as the white bubble mailers I used to use, but they do the job!

  3. As well as the Jiffy Green mailers, I also recycled bubble mailers I have recieved from my suppliers. Again, not as pretty as a shiny new envelope, but I think people understand and appreciate why.

  4. To reseal the recycled mailers, and also make the new ones more secure I used to use sellotape, but I’ve recently invested in some plastic free tape . I didn’t really twig how much we use sellotape but it comes on pretty much every package I get - and most of it ends up in landfill, so the paper tape is very welcome! It also sticks really well. I’d definitely recommend it.

I’ve been in touch with my box supplier to find out more about the foam inserts that come tucked into every box, so I’ll update on that once I hear back, but I think the P&P department of my little biz is doing okay in reducing the impact on the planet. I’d love to hear any other tips/ advice from you on how to be more sustainable and eco-friendly.

I’m slowly working my way through my other processes and materials to see what other changes I can make….it’s a bit of a minefield but I’ll get there - one sheet of recycled sterling at a time.

Eco-friendly sterling silver

Useful informationBecky Pearce
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Eco-friendly silver

You might have noticed in some of my product descriptions that I use eco-friendly sterling silver where possible. So, I thought you might like a bit more information about what I mean by that.

Silver mining and extraction

Silver ore is mined in underground and open pit mines in, which can be problematic in terms of the working conditions, and in the use of child labour (in Africa and Asia children as young as 5 are involved in the mines). In addition the environmental impact of mining is huge, and toxic substances can pollute the air and water sources in the area of the mine.

The silver is extracted from the ore using either a smelting, or chemical leaching process which again can cause massive problems with pollution.

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What is eco-friendly silver?

So, instead of using traditional silver, I always opt for the eco-friendly sterling silver option where possible. I source my certified eco-friendly recycled silver from reputable suppliers. This is basically using scrap jewellery, medical equipment, electronics and giftware which is melted, cleaned and tested for purity before being formed into wire, or sheet ready to use for making jewellery.

I also use my own silver scraps to create pieces of jewellery, melting the scraps into little balls for decoration on certain pieces, or in the case of my bubble studs (below), they form the piece itself!

I wish I could just stick to using recycled silver, but at the moment I can only source it for sheet, wire and some tubing. Components and chain that I incorporate into my designs are harder to find in this greener option! If anyone knows of any good suppliers for these, I’m all ears.

The recycled silver is a touch more expensive, but to me, it’s so worth it.