This month leading ethical jewellery brand Lebrusan Studio reveals the Artisan Collection, its new troupe of engagement rings crafted exclusively from traceable and artisanally mined materials.
Each made-to-order jewel is to be cast in 18ct Fairmined Ecological Gold, extracted by the XAMODX cooperative in Mongolia without the use of any mercury or cyanide whatsoever. The cooperative’s coveted Fairmined certification ensures stringent working regulations, access to fair trade and wages, and the allocation of additional funds for community investment projects.
Meanwhile, the collection’s crowning jewels are Ocean Diamonds carefully retrieved from the ocean floor off the west coast of Namibia by experienced career divers. Over billions of years, Ocean Diamonds are carried through torrent and flow by the power of rivers until they eventually settle between gullies or become hidden within the seabed. Only the strongest diamonds survive this journey. Once brought to the surface and faceted by skilled stone-cutters in the local area, each gleaming formation is a unique encapsulation of Mother Nature's magic and specialist local knowledge.
“The most beautiful jewellery is jewellery that tells stories,” Lebrusan Studio explains. “In a world defined by fast trends and easy consumption, so few of us know as much as we should about the products we’re buying. An engagement ring is an incredibly sentimental ‘forever’ jewel and we don’t believe its symbolism should be clouded by murky backwaters.
“By committing to gold and diamonds that can be traced right back to their artisanal roots, we’re not only offering our clients the transparency they deserve; we’re ensuring that wealth is distributed evenly throughout the supply chain. In the fair and sustainable world we see in our mind’s eye, the more people directly benefited by a particular product, the better.”
Though heavily devoted to environmental sustainability, offering recycled metals and reclaimed diamonds across all other collections, Lebrusan Studio’s new Artisan Collection is a venture with a primarily socioeconomic focus. In the words of the eponymous brand, “These jewels are an opportunity to champion artisanal and small-scale mining communities, whose livelihoods are just as legitimate as ever.”
The collection is quintessential by design, characterised by slender gold bands, elevated claw settings and 1ct round brilliant cut central diamonds, along with the option for intricate hand engraving at the client’s request. Variations include a classic solitaire, a trilogy setting, and a band carefully micro-set with small shoulder diamonds. Timeless and unmistakeably romantic, the designs are reflective of the brand’s slow and steady ethos; their shirking of fleeting fads and their penchant for heirloom jewels that can be passed down from one generation to the next.
“The pieces are so beautiful!” says Ocean Diamonds. “Such exquisite designs and detailing. We really admire Lebrusan Studio’s ethos and choice of gold for the pieces too alongside the Ocean Diamonds.”
The launch comes a few months after Lebrusan Studio scooped up two titles at the prestigious National Association of Jewellers Awards. The Brighton and London based brand won Corporate Social Responsibility Initiative of the Year on account of having raised £1,000 for the Global March Against Child Labour last year, whilst its esteemed Creative Director Arabel Lebrusan was awarded Jewellery Designer of the Year.