The luxury jewellery industry has long been associated with exclusivity and glamour. However, in recent years, a growing awareness of the environmental and social impact of the exploitation and corruption of its production has prompted a shift towards embracing responsible practices. As consumers become more conscious of their choices, a new definition of luxury is emerging with one that combines ethical behaviours and business with high-end design.
For the latest live Women Authors of Achievement Podcast, WAA teamed up with SEEK & PREMIUM to speak with fine jewellery designer Guya Merkle, the entrepreneur whose mission is to redefine luxury by combining ethical behaviour with high-end design.
After inheriting her family's jewellery business at a young age and experiencing its bankruptcy, Guya Merkle embarked on a personal journey to design and produce high-end jewellery. Inspired by a life-changing trip to a gold mine in Peru and witnessing the industry's problems, she founded VIERI in 2015 with a policy on only using urban mined gold and ethically sourced gemstones.
Check out some of these key points from our conversation with Guya on how to find out how to purchase ethically when creating that jewellery-must-have wish list!
Luxury Isn’t Going Anywhere
“Luxury of course will always be there, but as consumers we are longing for more individuality and transparency”. The luxury jewellery industry must strive for transparency by openly sharing information about their production processes, including sourcing, manufacturing, and labour practices. This includes providing details about the origin of materials, production facilities, and the safety of the working conditions for all involved.
Embrace the Ethically Sourced
The VIERI brand stands out as a small high-end brand with a significant impact, emphasising responsible jewellery production from recycled metals and ethically sourced gemstones from eco-friendly techniques which minimise environmental impact and strives to help support local communities.
The Future of Sustainable Jewellery Design
“Jewellery trends and designs are as unique as we are, but the future is for sure sustainable.”
Creating unique designs while supporting local communities and preserving cultural heritage is just one aspect of sustainability that VIERI focuses on. With emotional pieces, VIERI upcycles much-loved jewellery to embody both eco-consciousness whilst keeping that personal connection at the heart of all their designs.
About Women Authors of Achievement Podcast:
The bi-weekly podcast was launched in February 2021. The guests on the show come from a broad range of backgrounds: founders, creators, entrepreneurs and investors. In every episode Daria sets out to uncover the essential ingredients behind their professional paths, taking listeners on a journey through their lives to reveal humble beginnings, their inspirations and heroes, and the obstacles they faced to get to where they are today.