Since we started making jewellery more than 20 years ago, we have understood that the provenance of the precious metals we work with and stones we set, form a part of the inherent beauty of our pieces. We are constantly looking for ways in which a small business like ours can work to improve the traceability and sustainability of the materials we use and the practices we follow.
At our core
Each piece at McCaul Goldsmiths is designed, made and set in-house, in either our Dublin or London ateliers, ensuring complete transparency in our making process and reducing the carbon footprint of each piece. Customers and visitors to both our London and Dublin ateliers are welcome to take a look around the workshop to understand our processes and to meet the makers and designers who will craft your piece. Being a small outfit plays to our strengths and allows us to be agile in making sustainability commitments which are really important, both to us as makers, and to our customers, such as using 100% recycled gold as standard.
We aim to create timeless pieces to be worn and treasured for your lifetime and beyond. To ensure your piece lasts the test of time, drop into us at either of our Dublin or London ateliers for for a free yearly care and maintenance check. We love to see our pieces again and it is always a pleasure to catch up with our customers.
We have thoroughly reviewed and researched our precious metal supply chains from a sustainability, environmental and ethical perspective and this is something that we continue to do on an ongoing basis. As a result we offer our customers three options when choosing the precious metal for their piece: recycled gold and platinum, which we use as standard; Fairtrade gold; or, the ability to reuse the customers own metal.
Recyled gold & Platinum
Reduce, reuse, recycle is as relevant in the jewellery world as it is any walk of life. We only use 100% recycled gold and platinum in our pieces as standard (although at its origin all gold will have been mined initially, even if it that took place a hundred or more years ago). Using recycled gold, as opposed to newly mined gold, results in a staggering 600 times less carbon dioxide being released into the atmosphere. Being focussed on the environmental impact of the work we do and being a small atelier which uses precise quantities of metals allows us to commit to using 100% recycled gold as standard.
An independently audited set of benchmarks created by Fairtrade International connects goldsmiths, such as us here at McCaul Goldsmiths, to miners, through a transparent and traceable supply chain. The Fairtrade certificate ensures workers in these small scale gold mines earn a guaranteed minimum price for their gold. They also receive a premium to spend on improving their businesses or on community projects, such as education, clean water and healthcare. Fairtrade Gold Standard includes strict requirements on working conditions, health and safety, handling chemicals, women’s rights, child labour, and protection of the environment including water sources and forests. Although there is a slight cost differential to use Fairtrade Gold in any given piece, at McCaul Goldsmiths we have taken the decision not to profit from the use of Fairtrade metal over regular metal. We are proud to be part of the Fairtrade goldsmiths scheme, find us here: McCaul Fairtrade details.
Re-using your own jewellery
Sometimes our customers love to re-purpose pieces of jewellery they already own, for sentimental reasons as well as environmental considerations. Although it can be more labour intensive than obtaining gold from our gold suppliers, because of the nature of the work involved in melting a customer’s gold, if it is possible to do so we love to give pre-loved pieces of jewellery a new lease of life. If you would like to understand the process in greater detail, we would love to hear from you.
DIAMONDS & GEMSTONES
We work with a small number of trusted gemstone and diamond suppliers who we know personally and with whom we have developed strong relationships with over the years. We only buy from suppliers who guarantee that their stones are ethically sourced. Our stones are carefully chosen for their provenance, quality and beauty. We are constantly adding to our collection, selecting stones for their vivid colour, unusual cut, rarity or sparkle.
the kimberley process
At McCaul Goldsmiths we only use conflict-free diamonds in our jewellery and all our diamonds are only ever sourced from suppliers that comply with the Kimberley process.
In 2003, the Kimberley Process Certification Scheme was established to prevent "conflict diamonds" from entering the mainstream rough diamond market. Conflict diamonds, also referred to as blood diamonds or war diamonds, are diamonds that originate from areas that are controlled by forces, factions or corrupt governments responsible for fuelling conflict and wars. The Kimberley Process works by ensuring that all transactions involving the sale and purchase of diamonds include clear statements guaranteeing that the diamonds are of ethical origin. All of the diamonds used in our jewellery are sourced from suppliers that comply with the Kimberly Process.
We also offer the option to use lab-grown diamonds in our pieces.
Take a look here at more of our stunning Diamond rings.
At McCaul Goldsmiths we are in the fortunate position that we hand-pick gemstones for each individual piece. Although we offer our customers a vast array of gemstones, we apply the same rigorous selection process when sourcing our stones - we only want to use the most beautiful gems, exquisitely cut, which have been fairly and ethically mined. Although there is no Kimberly Process equivalent for gemstones, our suppliers understand that the provenance of a gemstone is as important to us as its beauty and we only source gemstones where we have developed a relationship with the gemstone specialist.
We have travelled the globe to source the most beautiful gems from the most reliable sources, preferring to know the origin of the exact mine a gem has come from, in this way we know that the miners have been treated fairly. Our preferred approach is to deal with gemcutters directly and by ensuring a very small supply chain we remove the middle men, this reduces unnecessary costs for our customers and means we find the most beautiful stones from highly skilled gemcutters, fairly mined. Sourcing these gems is our passion and if you have any questions about this, we would be more than pleased to talk you through our different gems.
At McCaul Goldsmiths we are very happy to work with heirloom gemstones, we would need to assess their quality and suitability before setting but giving new life to an existing gem is something we love to do. Take a look behind the process with this beautiful commission here. If you are interested in something similar, we would love to hear from you.
Some of our most exquisite pieces use pearls as their focal point and we hand-pick our pearls based on their individual beauty and for their sustainability. To ensure the provenance of our pearls we use a single-source specialist pearl supplier who only source their pearls in accordance with sustainable practices. For a closer look, browse some of our stunning pearl jewellery collections.
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As always, we welcome your comments, questions and queries.