Ideas Form Actions at Jewelry Industry Summit

By Constance on March 18, 2016 at 10:21 am
Bario Neal team members pose with Anna at the Jewelry Industry Summit.
 Actions and the agents of change, BN team members at the recent Jewelry Industry Summit.
At last weekend’s Jewelry Industry Summit, stakeholders from across our industry came together to create a shared vision of responsible sourcing across our industry. The summit coalesced knowledge from our industry and others, as well as NGO and government organizations so that we can learn from an build on others’ experience.
Attendees separate their thoughts into strengths, opportunities, and actions.
 Participants discuss and identify key issues. Photo courtesy of the Jewelry Industry Summit.
One of the summit’s greatest accomplishment was to support traceability, transparency and sourcing initiatives in order to produce materials in a manner that both protects and sustains the environment; and benefits the individuals and communities where our jewelry is mined, manufactured, traded, and sold.
Attendees separate their thoughts into strengths, opportunities, and actions.
Groups separated their thoughts into strengths, opportunities, and actions. 
Several groups at the Summit committed to advancing specific issues within the supply chain, including helping gem cutters in developing countries who need education and equipment to avoid silicosis, a disease that occurs from inhaling stone dust. Another specific initiative created an artisanal colored gem mining site project in Brazil that adheres to responsible social, ethical, and environmental practices.

 Anna Bario presents at the Jewelry Industry Summit.Anna Bario, key summit presenter and organizer, spoke of the urgent need for progress.

 

Overall, the summit was a spark– a much-needed first step toward greater transparency in our industry and greater benefit to the entire supply chain.  Anna reminded the attendees of the importance of a long-term investment in sustainable advances in her talk:

 “Time is the biggest investment. Not just to do it, but to tell the story.”

Big News for Your Monday Motivation

By Constance on March 7, 2016 at 2:47 pm

SCOTUS Unanimously Reverses Alabama Court’s Refusal to Recognize Same-Sex Adoption

The Alabama Supreme Court. Image from the Human Rights Campaign’s website.

Mondays can feel a little… meh, but with spring weather finally imminent, we turn to those breaking new ground for fresh Monday motivation.

First up on the docket, the unanimous decision from the Supreme Court of the United States reversing the Alabama Supreme Court’s refusal to recognize an adoption by a lesbian non-biological mother. From the Human Rights Campaign Statement:

“Any attempt to deny legal rights to our families is reprehensible, and this ruling establishes that bias and discrimination cannot be allowed to undermine the bond between LGBT parents and their children,” said HRC Legal Director Sarah Warbelow. “The nation’s highest court today ruled in the best interests of these children, setting a firm precedent for others across our nation. These children have two parents, and should have the security that comes with legal recognition.”

Though it may appear to be a small affirmation, the decision could affect other states that challenge or deny same-sex adoptions– a big victory in the fight for same-sex couples to stand on equal ground.

 

From left, Anna Bario and Page Neal. Anna will be speaking this weekend at the Jewelry Industry Summit.

Next up, we turn to an even more personal motivation, that of welcoming back BN co-owner and new mom (!), Anna Bario, who marks her return with a special event she has been planning for a long time, the upcoming Jewelry Industry Summit.

From the Summit’s website:

Though a number of responsible sourcing programs exist, there’s never been an industry-wide consensus on what constitutes a vision ALL stakeholders can support. At the Summit, the group discussion will include all viewpoints, representing every category and all levels of the jewelry industry.

And a recent article featuring Anna in Rapaport:

“One of the biggest challenges the KP (The Kimberley Process Certification Scheme) faces in expanding its scope to include human rights abuses is getting the various member countries to agree that it is a task worth undertaking. ‘I’m excited about the Jewelry Industry Summit in 2016,’ concludes Anna Bario, co-founder of Bario Neal, who is on the planning committee. The summit, an open forum on sustainability and responsible sourcing in the jewelry industry, will be held in New York City and is crowd funded. ‘I’m looking forward to the possibility of having a really open conversation about the challenges in the industry regarding responsible sourcing.'”

The forum is taking place at the Fashion Institute of Technology in New York City March 11–13, with an opening reception on the evening of March 10. Register here.

 

We are looking for a full-time Administrator for our Philadelphia location.

 

Lastly, if those two were not enough, we would like to announce an exciting opportunity to help us lead our growing team! We are looking for a full-time Design Administrator for our Philadelphia location. The position will require the candidate to work directly with our founders to promote and advance the ethical sourcing and marriage equality mission of the company, develop and oversee budgets, research industry trends, manage internal systems, develop and implement growth strategies. Other responsibilities include the management of the flagship Philadelphia store,​ book-keeping support, ​maintaining communication between the​ production, marketing, and customer service departments ​and ​assistance in organizing the bi-monthly staff meetings.

Skills required:
  • Strong interpersonal and problem-solving skills
  • Self-motivated &  ability to multitask
  • Ability to handle detail effectively and accurately
  • Ability to organize and prioritize tasks
  • Excellent communication skills, including ability to write clearly
  • Command of google calendar system, Excel, Word
  • The ability to research and learn new programs quickly

Sound like the perfect opportunity for a fresh start with a groundbreaking company? Please send a cover letter and resume to inquiries@bario-neal.com.

New Colored Gemstone Designs + the Return of the Opal Cluster Ring

By Constance on January 19, 2016 at 10:07 am

Search no more, the missing piece has been found.

Search no more, the missing piece is here. Introducing our new Opal and Andalusite ring designs.

 

Remember our Limited Edition Opal Three-Stone Ring that quickly sold out? We felt your pain at missing out on that beauty, so we created the brand-new, revamped, Opal Cluster Ring for our permanent collection! Joining it are two more new collection designs: the Andalusite Cluster Ring and Andalusite Nikko Ring, crafted with an equally radiant new colored gemstone.

 

The new Opal Cluster Ring. Opals offer a soft glow with colorful iridescence that shifts in the light.

The new Opal Cluster Ring offers softly-glowing colors that shift in the light.

 

This exciting new ring vertically stacks an opal over an apricot sapphire, balancing contemporary design with a classic look. October’s birthstone, the opal features kaleidoscopic and varied coloring, ranging from deep saturated colors to light iridescent tones, owing to their long history as symbols of luck and mystery.

Our opals are ethically sourced from an Ethiopian mining collective, then cut and polished in a respected facility in Jaipur, India. Light in color, these stones offer a soft glow and dancing, colorful iridescence. Because opals are fairly soft stones, it was important to design a protective prong setting that does not hide its beauty. Each opal is then paired with an emerald-cut, apricot sapphire to bring out the the gentle pastels of the Ethiopian opal. We source our sapphires from an ethical mine in Sri Lanka where all cutting and polishing is done on site by well-trained professionals. The mine is known for the unusually wide variety of colored sapphires it produces. We carefully hand-pick and custom-cut each sapphire in order to create perfect color and size match for each unique opal, so every ring made is a one-of-a-kind.

 

Another color-changing gem, Andalusite, features in two gorgeous new pieces

Another color-changing gem, Andalusite, features in two gorgeous new pieces.

 

Enter the earthy radiance of the gemstone known as Andalusite– in the first of two new designs, the Andalusite Cluster ring, similar to the Opal Cluster, with prong settings and a delicate band. As with the Opal Cluster Ring, we hand selected the colored sapphires and paired them with the andalusite to give the most complimentary color combinations. The emerald-cut, bright yellow sapphire beneath an oval clear white sapphire, balances both the teardrop shape and the rich, dark tones of the andalusite.

 

Another color-changing gem, Andalusite, featured in a pear-cut with the Nikko Setting.

The Andalusite Cluster features three stones in a perfectly balanced composition of varied shapes. 

 

The final design to round out this trio of new colored gemstone rings is the Andalusite Nikko Ring, named for our existing design’s marquise-inspired setting, but showcasing the stone as a pear-cut solitaire.

 

Another color-changing gem, Andalusite, featured in a pear-cut with the Nikko Setting.

Our Andalusite Nikko Ring is ready for stacking!

 

Andalusite owes its name to Andalusia, the province in Spain where it was first discovered. Similar to opal, andalusite is a poylchromatic gem, though its coloring and structure are very different. Ranging from khaki to dark olive, pierced by angular pinks, reds, and blues as the stone shifts in the light, our Andalusite is sourced from a well-respected ethical supplier.

 

Very necessary additions to the growing trend of diamond-alternative engagement rings.

The newest, most-necessary additions to the growing trend of diamond-alternative engagement rings.

 

Love colored gemstones and want to learn more about the growing movement to improve ethical practices? Join us next month at the Jewelry Industry Summit. The summit is a great chance to engage with Anna Bario and other industry leaders as they discuss the challenges facing colored gemstone sourcing, and other topics that will transform the jewelry industry for the better.

 

 

 

Former Tiffany’s CEO Thinks Gold Isn’t Worth Cost to The Environment

By Constance on November 10, 2015 at 3:00 pm
Photo by Carl Johnson
Photo by Carl Johnson from www.SaveBristolBay.org

When Gold Isn’t Worth The Price, a recent New York Times OpEd, written by the former CEO of Tiffany starts in the pristine wilderness of Bristol Bay for a good reason. An off-contested swatch of Alaskan wilderness, prized by fisherman and sought after by mining and oil-companies alike, Bristol Bay is again a hot topic as House Republicans, backed by special interests, criticize the EPA’s decision to uphold an order of protection. Simply put, he states that as it stands, gold isn’t worth the impact it has on the environment. The second half of Kowalski’s piece gives a great summary of the overall strategy of what needs to be done in the industry, which coincides with the goals of the upcoming Jewelry Industry Summit. Read more about our involvement in the summit committee and stay tuned to detailed articles once it is underway about how we can make gold mining reduce it’s negative environmental impact.

“No amount of corporate profit or share price value could justify our participation, however indirectly, in the degradation of such indescribable beauty (…) The threat to Bristol Bay exemplifies a far larger issue: the enormous human and environmental cost of irresponsible mining.” –MICHAEL J. KOWALSKI

Learn more about how to protect the Bristol Bay from the proposed Pebble Mine.