There’s a lot to consider when you’re about to tie the knot. From the guestlist to the venue, the suits the groomsmen will be wearing and that dress, every little detail requires careful thought.
Your wedding rings will come high on your to-do list, too, but for lots of brides and grooms-to-be, it isn’t always as simple as finding a jewellery website and hitting ‘Order’ on a complementing pair of rings.
These days, more and more of us are making the conscious decision to think more ethically – and that kind of commitment also translates to the most important day of most people’s lives, too: the wedding day.
Choosing the right colour, style of gold and clarity of the diamond is important, but have you also considered how the gold is mined? Child labour, exploitation and mercury poisoning can be rife in this industry – that is, unless you choose to buy from a responsible source who is as committed to ethical practices as you are.
Always Ethically Sourced
Mark, the artisan behind Jacqueline & Edward, who only uses recycled, eco-friendly gold and other precious metals in the rings he creates. This is complemented by natural river gold, found over two generations of intrepid gold panning with Mark’s Father, Edward. Today, Mark continues to spend his free time roaming the wilds and following his passion – well, one of his passions. The other is, of course, creating the perfect handmade wedding rings.
As we find the gold ourselves – right here in the UK – you can be sure that it’s always ethically sourced. You can even come with us and enjoy your own gold panning experience.
It may be a little-known industry, but gold panning is such a huge part of Mark’s life that he has stood in the final for the men’s professional class in the World Gold Panning Championships.
He also formed part of the British team, winning both the British and Scottish gold panning titles. A trained geologist and goldsmith, he’s also a chartered environmentalist, chartered scientist and chartered with the Institute of Water and Environmental Management. As such, Mark believes in sustainable acquisition of precious metals.
Couples keen on hosting an ethical wedding can be sure that the gold Mark uses to create your rings is both sustainable and eco-friendly – and he says he wouldn’t have it any other way.
An ethical wedding doesn’t have to start and end at ethically sourced wedding rings either. There’s a wealth of ways you can enjoy a wedding that puts your values first. Here are some examples of how you can do just that:
Choose an Ethical Venue
Your wedding venue is one of the most important aspects of the day, so make sure you choose one you’re more than happy with. Think about the venue’s attitude towards sustainability, selecting the place you’ll marry based on that.
Say Yes to an Upcycled Wedding Dress
When you consider that most wedding dresses are worn only once, that’s a lot of money to spend on a garment which might end up in the ‘dress-up’ box for a little one years down the line. Lots of dressmakers are committed to using ethically sourced material, which means if you are going to go down the route of purchasing a brand new dress, you can be sure the fabric – and the means by which the garment is made – align with your values.
Think about buying a pre-loved dress, then – or consider upcycling a family member’s gown and making it your own. Choose the latter option and you’ll know it’ll be one of a kind, too.
Ask Guests to Donate to Charity
If you’re living with your soon-to-be husband or wife, you probably own a toaster, kettle and a nice set of Champagne flutes. So, consider asking you guests to donate to charity instead of buying you a gift. It’s the perfect way to help others on your special day – and your wedding party will get as much satisfaction out of the idea as you will.
When it comes to giving back, we’re as passionate as you are, having recently teamed up with Trees for Life – an award-winning charity which is working to restore Scotland’s Caledonian Forest. If you’re already considering purchasing your wedding rings from us, perhaps it’ll interest you to know that for every ring or pair of rings we sell, we’ll be buying a tree to be planted within our own grove in the Forest.
Interestingly, the next time we visit our grove in person to plant some of our trees we will be collecting fallen branches within the Caledonian forest to continue making our ethically and sustainably sourced wooden ring boxes. Find out more about the Caledonian forest project by heading here.
Want to chat to us about ethical wedding rings from Jacqueline & Edward? Do not hesitate to get in touch with us here on the site.