By Daniela Degrassi
I wonder if Leonardo di Caprio expected the impact his 2006 movie “Blood Diamond” would have when he starred in it. The title refers to diamonds mined in war zones and sold to finance conflicts, and thereby profit warlords and diamond companies across the world.
Following that provoking story, there has been a compelling amount of jewelers worldwide that shifted their practices towards a more ethically sustainable supply chain and luckily, for today’s brides to be, it is fairly easy to find engagement and wedding rings that are not stained with pain and sufferings.
And at The Kind Bride, you’ll get to meet quite a few of these ‘jewelry revolutionaries’, have your cup of tea handy, and meet our first guest.
MADE Diamonds create engagement rings that preserve virtuous traditions whilst abandoning harmful conventions. Based in the Jewellery Quarter in Birmingham, they are a vegan, ethical and sustainable business.
The owners of MADE Diamonds have worked in the jewellery business for over 30 years, and recognized the need to make a stand for change and provide a better alternative to mined diamonds.
“Our stones are constructed by building real man made diamond onto a purpose built non-diamond core. Using this method allows the quality of every single stone to be precisely regulated. Each stone is cut by hand into the iconic hearts and arrows shape which can only be achieved in a tiny fraction of pure diamonds, natural or man-made. Our rings offer all of the beauty and magic of a natural diamond but without the painful stigma associated with mined stones. Far from being a compromise, our rings offer something more meaningful and thoughtful than any natural diamond ring could ever provide”
Why did you decide to head down the ethical route?
“As with most people who come to embrace ethical living and veganism, it is not something we were always that aware of. As we learnt about the benefits of veganism for our own health, the planet and of course the animals, it seemed like the only logical way forward for us. We didn’t want to contribute to the system that harms animals and our planet any longer so we made some drastic changes in our personal lives. Going vegan seems to naturally lead onto a more generally ethical way of living because you begin to think so much more about the impact of all of your actions”
A feminist and independent spirit since she could remember (her childhood heroines were Pippi Longstockings and Katharine Hepburn) Daniela Degrassi found her creative outlet as a lifestyle photographer, working mainly in Northern California where she lived for 15 years before moving back to her native Italy to continue to be her autistic sister’s primary caregiver. Vegan since 2014, she found a perfect way to carry her message of compassion while celebrating her love for the wedding industry launching The Kind Bride in February 2018.