I’m a bit of a jewelry fiend. Handmade, recycled jewelry always catches my eye and leads to the (nearly) involuntary swiping of my debit card. Of all the little superfluous purchases that I make in life, I get the biggest kick out of buying jewelry, especially when I know that I am supporting a local artist and the local economy. Here are a few of my favorite shops for environmentally conscious jewelry in Atlanta.
Smart Glass Recycled Jewelry I’ll never look at a glass bottle the same way again. It is phenomenal how artist Kathleen Plate transforms an average bottle into stylish jewelry and chic home decor. Plate began as her mother’s apprentice, soldering and working with stained glass. She never thought to turn the hobby into a career until she created a pair of earrings for her friend. Enamored with the gift, the friend quickly became Plate’s unofficial marketing representative and the rest is history.
Plate keeps her designs clean, simple, and sophisticated. My favorite line is the Coca-Cola collection. You don’t get much more Southern than Coca-Cola, with its headquarters and amusement center nestled downtown. Creating necklaces, bracelets and earrings using Coca-Cola’s glass bottles adds a strong sense of place and pride to fashion.
Re-Inspiration Store has everything from jewelry to hand mirrors and shoulder bags. The lawn ornaments and home decor are excellent for quirky art collectors with a knack for unique forms and fun colors. Personally, I adored the Japanese vintage coin earrings. (I recently purchased Peruvian coin earrings at Atlantis Eclectic Boutique in Little Five Points.) The earrings add a bit of international flare to crafts made right here at home. The prices are budget friendly, which I also appreciate. Bravo to founders Brooke Schultz and Julie Golden for creating affordable, wearable art!
Though it has branches around the globe, I am a sucker for Ten Thousand Villages. If I could live in the Virginia Highlands location, I probably would. They’ve got everything from necklaces, bangles, rings, scarves, purses, glassware, hammocks, room dividers, artwork…the list goes on. I don’t think I have ever seen anything that isn’t crave-worthy. I snagged a great jewelry set from Bangladesh for about $35. I think I’m going back for the snazzy snack wrapper tote bag. You can spend as much or as little as you’d like in this store so its great for casual birthday gifts as well as wedding and anniversary presents. What I appreciate most is the store’s approach to fair trade items, many of which are handmade of recycled materials. Each item comes with a card explaining its origin and often the story of its creators.
I intend for this to be a running list with frequent updates. If you own or know of an environmentally-friendly jewelry or accessories shop in Atlanta, shoot me an email or comment below and I will add it to the list!