I love any opportunity to feature a jeweler that makes sustainably produced, responsibly sourced jewelry a priority. Thankfully, we’ve been gifted with a plethora of talents lately. Adding another to the list of admirable artisans: Christina Malle Jewelry.
Malle is a classically trained goldsmith, graduate of the Gemological Institute of America, and a member of Ethical Metalsmiths (joining its board of directors in 2018), a community of jewelers, designers, suppliers, and even buyers, who make the commitment to do what they do—design, buy, etc.—responsibly. The cause was founded in 2004 and continues to attract new members through education, industry summits, and more.
“When I practiced law as a human rights attorney, I met people who had worked as artisan gold miners in Sierra Leone,” says Malle, when I asked about the driving forces behind her business ethos. “It made me wonder about where gold is from and how it enters the supply chain. Later, studying gemology at GIA in New York, I was lucky to examine an incredible variety of gemstones—of course, we all wanted to know where the gemstones were from and how we could identify and evaluate them.”
“As a goldsmith and jeweler, I always ask my vendors where products are from—it is problematic to me if there is resistance to answering that question,” continues Malle. “Luckily, other jewelers have been very generous in terms of introducing me to vendors who are proud to be able to trace their supply chains. I am heartened to see so many people in the industry tackle the challenging issues of transparency and sourcing along our very complex supply chains. It is also heartening to see so many sectors of the industry join the conversation.”
Each piece of jewelry from Malle’s collection is made by hand in New York City, using recycled gold and silver. A highlight of the designer’s collections for me is the Rosette pieces, featuring a knob-like floral design that has just the right amount of eye-pleasing texture. I can see the Rosette studs sitting nicely on the ear and am very much wanting to group them with teeny tiny gemstones on a multiply-pierced lobe (ahem, mine). The studs, according to the designer’s website, were inspired by details in a painting by Fra Angelico, an early Renaissance Italian artist. Cosí buono.
If you’re JCK Tucson–bound this February, Christina Malle will be exhibiting for the first time at the show, so that’s a great place to meet the designer—and enjoy her styles up close and personal. For planning, visit jckonline.com/tucson, and go to christinamalle.com for more by Christina Malle (including custom work!).
Top: Rosette necklace in recycled 18k yellow gold with tourmaline, $1,850