MYEL: A QUEST FOR MORE ETHICAL JEWELRY

MYEL: A QUEST FOR MORE ETHICAL JEWELRY
Please note that this article is a copy of the XTRA article that appeared in LaPresse+ on November 4, 2021

 

In Montreal, a local jewelry store has set its sights on making beautiful things, and doing them better. Since 2013, MYEL has been attracting customers looking for the perfect blend of high-end jewelry, inspired design and ethical materials. Always looking for sustainable solutions to industry issues, the jeweler can now boast of being the first in Quebec to offer a collection designed exclusively with Fairmined certified gold.

1. How it all started

MYEL's beginnings are almost anecdotal. Myriam √Člie, the founder of what was to become the high-end jewelry brand, was in Germany for a year when she noticed that her jewelry had been stolen at the airport. With a creative soul fuelled by her art studies, the expatriate found enough material in her new neighborhood to make her own collection. Nothing luxurious, but jewelry that looks like her.

I was in the middle of a foreign country with an in-laws whose language I didn't share, Seeing me learning about jewelry, my father-in-law, who is a dental technician, noticed that he was using the same working tools as I was. Around this budding passion, bonds began to form.

boutique MYEL

 

Myriam √Člie

 


Back in Montreal, Myriam √Člie continued her apprenticeship with experienced craftsmen. The fascinating and mysterious world of jewelry opened up to her. MYEL was born. Today, the world of jewelry still holds many secrets for the designer. She promises to uncover them, one by one.

The name was born from the contraction of my first name and my name, but also from the evocation of honey, this liquid and precious gold.

2. Fairmined gold: more responsible, more transparent

When she began to question her suppliers about the origin of the precious metals and stones she used, the jewelry designer came up against an opaque chain. "It is extremely difficult to establish the traceability of raw materials in this industry," says Myriam √Člie. But at MYEL, we wanted more transparency and we wanted to make sure that our sourcing was in line with our values.

Because the challenges are numerous when you start to dig into this issue: corruption linked to the extraction of precious minerals, armed conflicts, forced labour and child exploitation, deforestation, dumping of mercury and other pollutants, etc.

bague fairmined

 

hélios earrings

 

The Montreal jeweler has joined the Ethical Metalsmith Association, an organisation dedicated to promoting responsible practices in the jewelry industry. Second-hand and laboratory-crafted diamonds have made their way into the collections. Finally, with a constant focus on reducing the environmental and social impact of its production, MYEL has recently made the leap to Fairmined gold. All its gold engagement rings now carry this seal.

Fairmined certification ensures that the gold and associated precious metals are sourced from artisanal mining operations and are mined on a small scale. Traceability is direct, as there is only one intermediary. In other words, by choosing this gold, we are directly supporting the communities that live off the gold mines and helping them to become more economically independent.

However, the jeweler admits that nothing is perfect. But MYEL is committed to transparent disclosure of where it stands on the ethical scale as it moves forward.

Bague en diamants de laboratoire

 

Saphirs éthiques

 

3. Multiple and shifting influences

Myriam √Člie is eager to travel again. To meet the communities that extract the raw materials for MYEL jewelry, but also to find inspiration all around her. Because it is by rubbing shoulders with a host of worlds - fashion, music, the vibrant atmosphere of a foreign city, an exhibition, the contrasts of nature - that the designer creates the spark that guides her collections.

We aim to create pieces that are distinctive in design, but that stand the test of time and trends. Choosing quality, timeless jewelry is the most ecologically responsible thing we can do.

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