Computer company Dell has put its hands to jewellery making with the Circular Collection, featuring statement jewellery pieces made from gold recovered from recycled motherboards.
Launched in collaboration with actress and sustainability advocate, Nikki Reed, the limited-edition line of 14 and 18 carat earrings, rings, bracelets, and cufflinks aims to raise awareness of waste from the technology industry.
The Circular Collection’s name and the shape of the jewelry reference the circular economy, an approach to using materials in closed-loop cycles. The pieces are meant to last, rather than being fast fashion.
Gadgets have valuable materials like gold and silver inside. Yet only 12.5% of e-waste is recycled to create other products, according to Dell. And more than $60 million of gold and silver ends up in the trash from tech that is unsustainably disposed of.
Through Dell’s recycling program with Goodwill, which accepts electronic waste made by any manufacturer, it now has a steady supply of recycled material, including gold. The computer company says it’s taken time to work with a recycler to develop a process that can sustainably harvest gold from old gadgets, without the harsh chemicals that recyclers have used in the past.
Nikki Reed, who designed the Circular Collection, says she felt strongly about pricing the products more affordably to educate buyers about tech recycling and how various components of old phones and laptops can be used to create something new.
Nikki Reed also runs the sustainable fashion company, Bayou with Love, which sells clothing and homewares that are “local, sustainable, and recycled or upcycled”.
She said: “I want to shatter a lot of the misconceptions about sustainable materials and this preconceived notion that sustainability and luxury can’t belong in the same sentence.”
Rosa Medea is Life & Soul Magazine’s Chief @rosamedea