What She Wore Wednesday - Diamonds
Diamonds, a girls best friend or foe?It is Wednesday again. We have another great guest feature, my sweet sister-in-law, Linnea. Linnea is looking lovely as usual. The accessory we want to focus on is the sparkle she wears everyday, her beautiful diamond wedding ring. I have always loved Linnea's ring, it seems vintage, yet classic, all around beautiful and is something she will never get tired of wearing. However, I love her ring for reasons deeper than its appearance; its origin and the fact that it is a Conflict free diamond. Linnea and her husband have always been an inspiration to me. I remember begin so encouraged, 7 years ago (on Monday - ♥HAPPY ANNIVERSARY!!!♥) that they went out of their way to research and find a local retailer who could provide a certified conflict free diamond.
What is Conflict diamond and why does it matter?Many of you probably recognize the word blood diamond (which is synonymous with conflict diamond) from the movie Blood Diamond. If you haven't seen the movie, I recommend it as it definitely opens your eyes to the fact that our purchases can and do have impacts. According to the UN blood diamonds or conflict diamonds, "...originate from areas controlled by forces or factions opposed to legitimate and internationally recognized governments, and are used to fund military action in opposition to those governments..."
Basically, the sourcing of these diamonds results in and supports human rights abuses, environmental degradation, child labor, and corruption.There have been international efforts to stop the trading of blood diamonds and in 2000 UN adopted the Kimberly Process in hopes to create a system of tracking the origin of diamonds. Unfortunately, this system had turned out to be woefully inadequate and ineffective, and cannot always guarantee that consumers are in fact purchasing a conflict free diamond.
So what is a girl (or boy) who is in the market for a diamond to do?
Purchase a GOVERNMENT CERTIFIED CANADIAN DIAMOND.The Canadian government has created a diamond certification program that tracks diamonds from the mine to the market, so you can be assured of the origin of our diamond. In addition, Canadian diamonds are some of the most ethically sourced diamonds, as the government has strict labor and environmental laws that all producers must follow. For those of us who already have our rings and are planning on keeping them until death do us part, this post probably may seem pointless, but there is still a lot you can do surrounding the issue.
1. Encourage people you know who are considering a diamond purchase to demand conflict free diamonds (Canadian if possible).
2. Start thinking about the origin of all your purchases, jewelry and otherwise. Ask your retailers hard questions about where items were made and under what conditions. Start letting the world know that we care about where our products come from and the impacts behind them!If you would like more information on conflict diamonds, check out the following sources - Foreign Policy - Rough Cut - An investigation into the diamond industry today Global Witness - Conflict Diamonds - Canadian Diamond Certification Process Brilliant Earth - An Ethical Buying Guide Thanks, Linnea, for sharing your lovely ring and inspiring ideals with us!
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Also in Intentional Living
As you know, we are in full-on BABY mode over here (and loving every minute of it)!
It seems like the baby game has changed quite a bit since our last baby- there are so many new ethical, small shop, sustainable and giveback brands and products that we've begun to fall in love with! While we still turn to 2nd hand/hand-me-down items as our first resort for finding items for our kids - (it is most economical and sustainable), it has been encouraging and fun to see the myriad of new options! We've loved trying out and supporting some of these brands as we shop with an impact, and are excited to share our recommendations with you!
Here are our favorite ethical, small shop, sustainable giveback baby brands - and the products we have been using and loving in our everyday life!