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5 Tips for Finding a Sustainable Engagement Ring

Looking to find an engagement ring which is eco-friendly and does not harm the Earth? Look no further than this article on how to find a beautiful, eco-friendly, sustainable engagement ring as part of your green wedding!

marriage proposal as the beach

Hey, John!

My girlfriend and I try to be eco-friendly and reduce our effect on the environment.

Are there sustainable engagement rings? Where can I find one so I can propose to Emily?


Kyle in King City, Oregon

Hey, Kyle!  

That’s a great question!                                                     At Ainsworth House & Gardens, we are thrilled to host a couple’s wedding. We celebrate those couples who seek a green or eco-friendly or sustainable wedding. (We’ve heard all three terms and they seem to be synonymous.) A green wedding is one in which the couple tries to reduce their impact on the environment by making mindful decisions.

vintage diamond ring

One of those decisions is selecting the engagement ring.                        

Where can you find a sustainable engagement ring?                

Tip 1: Start at home.

Ask your mother, grandmother, or other relatives if there is a family heirloom ring with which you could propose. The love which that cherished ring represents could make your proposal all the more beautiful.

Do proposals happen with family heirlooms? Yes!

In this scene from Suits, Harvey proposes to Donna with his mother’s engagement ring:

If your family will let you, rummage through your family heirlooms!                                                                       

Tip 2: Vintage Jewelry.

Look online for vintage, estate, or antique jewelry auctions. 

Check out upscale resale stores (e.g., Junior League).

Try a jeweler such as Ed Marshall. Estate and vintage rings:  You never know what you might find!                                   

Tip 3: Reuse!

Buy a gorgeous antique ring, take out the stones, and reset them in a way your beloved will love!

You might consider melting down the gold in the ring you bought, refining that gold, and using that gold for the new band.

Yep! That’s a thing!

Tip 4: Know the origins of your diamond or gemstones.

Ask the jeweler if they are committed to selling only conflict-free diamonds like those verified by a Kimberly Process Certification Scheme document.

A reputable jeweler should be able to tell you where these stones were mined and under what conditions.  You are seeking a sustainable diamond or gemstone.     

What are you trying to avoid?

A blood diamond.

No, that’s not the color but the conditions under which the diamond was mined.          

If you saw the movie, then you know what “blood diamond” means—a diamond mined under deplorable safety conditions and then smuggled out of the country to be sold to fund a civil war.

A man and woman stand in loving embrace.

Tip 5: Shop for lab-created stones.

These have less impact on our environment. For instance, Moissanite, a rare mineral which occurs naturally, can be grown in a lab so there is no impact from mining. Also, it’s conflict-free! Better yet—moissanite looks like a beautiful diamond AND costs less! Another option is salt-and-pepper diamonds which are lab-grown and make wonderful, socially responsible jewelry.

If you have more questions, please reach out to me. I’m happy to help you!

Your friend in the wedding business,

John Shyne

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