Statement earrings are back in a big way and we've unearthed some gems from labels that support international social action projects - just in time for party season. Look good, do good = #winning
From glittering droplets of quartz at Christopher Kane, above left and right, to great loops of tortoiseshell resin at Loewe, above centre, it’s safe to say that statement earrings were the accessory of the month at the SS17 catwalk shows. For a long time, it’s been all about mismatched, curated pieces but we’re personally vay thrilled about this new development. A dainty row of tiny studs up one lobe is cool and all that, but it doesn’t really shout ‘it’s party time!’ like a proper pair, does it? We never need an excuse to treat ourselves to new baubles, but we’ve discovered some incredible pieces that will do something positive with your hard-earned cash. Enter the amazing charity statement earrings we’ve just discovered…
Firstly, there’s Rania Kinge, an artist and jewellery designer who was born in Syria, a country ripped apart by the threat of ISIS and constant warfare. Among her collections, Kinge has two artisan lines – I Love Syria and Damascus Concept – that employ displaced women to produce the pieces. The jaw-dropping pair above is part of a new collection (more of which will be available in January) made from ishani, a fine sand glazed porcelain – a typical Damascan craft that originated in Iran. From $80-$150.
Buy Impossible is a website that stocks pieces from labels that are all sustainable and ethical, with a transparent supply chain. One of our favourites is Fouche – founded by Claire Fouche, a former couture jeweller for the French house Faberge. She’s half South-African and grew up between England and Africa. Inspired by jewellery icons like the late great fashion editor Diana Vreeland, her statement pieces are hand-carved by artisans in Nairobi hand Kibera, Africa’s largest slum. They’re made from local ankole cow horn, a byproduct of the local food industry, and wood, as well as solid silver and brass. Fouche’s Maisha Foundation supports young talent from Kibera in training programmes. We’re wild about the Irga Deco earrings, above, £195, inspired by Ethiopia’s Art Deco Irga building.
Then there’s Drop Earrings Not Bombs – we love the name and we love the designs. These beauties, above, £20, are made using brightly coloured thread wound round a teardrop-shaped frame by Syrian men and women who’ve fled the ongoing conflict in their country. The workshop, in the Fatih district of Istanbul, is a source of social and emotional support, not to mention financial independence, for the people who work there. The project is supported by Calais Action, a direct-giving organisation that helps refugees rebuild their lives in Turkey, where the highest number of Syrian refugees reside.
Lastly, if you can’t quite break the delicate-hoop habit, check out Artisans & Adventurers – a label made collaboratively by small-scale artisan producers in Nairobi and Bombolulu Fair Trade workshops in Mombasa. One of their Kenyan workshops offers people with physical disabilities the opportunity for a better livelihood through training and employment. Founders Amy and Bee are dedicated to reducing the environmental impact of their production methods – these dainty Anchor Hoops, £25, above, are hand-cast from recycled brass.