All around the globe elephants are under siege for their ivory. One small solution – create jewelry that possesses many of the qualities and visual appeal of ivory from renewable, sustainable vegetable ivory. LeJu is a jewelry design company that does just that, it creates jewellery out of vegetable ivory – from a renewable seed harvested from a palm tree called Hyphaene Phytelephas found in the Amazonian rain forest.
Vegetable ivory is the only 100% sustainable alternative for elephant ivory given that its color and hardness are extremely similar to the real thing. It has many additional redeeming traits – its use stimulates struggling economies in South America, encourages communities to retain and protect their palm forests, providing an alternative to logging and burning of the Amazon forest – and reduces the demand for ivory derived from elephant tusks and thus, the murder of elephants.
Before it can be transformed into colorful, eco-friendly jewelry, the seeds must be allowed to dry naturally to gain the hardness required to be carved. Consequently, the older the seed the more valuable it becomes.
The resulting jewelry is beautiful and – even if it only incrementally reduces the amount of ivory traded and used by the fashion industry – it’s a worthy endeavor. Every little bit helps. Find more lovely vegetable ivory jewelry @ lejudesigns.com
related: more eco-fashion finds from The Alternative Consumer