We are so glad that our founder's “weird little idea” of 30+ years ago has become far more common. Because before there was even a glimmer of "cool" to the concept of recycling precious metal rather than "mining for more," Babs has been engaged in the greenest practices in jewelry manufacturing.
Babs purchased her first precious metal refining kit in the mid-80s. Its purchase was inspired by a guest who wanted to know that the gold from her grandmother’s rings wasn’t going to get mixed with anyone else’s. An in-house solution was the only way at the time to make that a reasonably-priced reality for her. The kits were not easy to find, and difficult to use...but they served a noble purpose.
Well, that first refining kit is long gone, and perhaps about a dozen larger, better ones, as well. Maybe one has been deep-sixed in our storage. We graduated long ago to partnering with refining firms who can do customer-specific refining batches for us. So, the tradition continues...
In addition to accommodating requests to re-use our guests’ metal to make new pieces for them, we also take scrap precious metal in trade towards pieces that have already been created, as well as purchase scrap precious metal outright. All that metal is refined and re-used in Alara designs.
As one of our many efforts to be as green as possible, we now produce 100% of our in-house jewelry from recycled precious metal only. And, since we use far more precious metal than we take in, we purchase the difference only from sources that separate their recycled scrap and earmark it. While there were some tough years when only one refiner offered recycled precious metal, there are several sources these days.
Likewise, the very great majority of our featured designers craft exclusively in recycled precious metals.
You can help! Bring your broken, unworn, unloved precious metal jewelry to us. We’ll purchase it from you at the best rate in town and you can be part of the solution.
And of course…a custom artwork made of either your or our recycled metal means you are being kind to both the environment and yourself, and we can then also repurpose your diamonds and gemstones at the same time.