The gold I use in my work comes from our placer gold mine on the Fortymile River in the Yukon Territory, Canada. Because our gold is mined in an environmentally sensitive manner, you can be confident that all of my jewellery is ethically responsible.
Placer gold consists of free gold particles, from gold dust to nuggets in size, found in gravel deposits. This placer gold was deposited by ancient rivers, and it is these ancient river beds which we mine to recover the gold.
Placer gold mining consists of washing and sorting the gravel to separate the gold particles. Because gold has a very high specific gravity, it will settle out in the sluice tray as lighter material is washed away.
In our placer mining operations we work with strict attention to the environment. Unlike in hard rock gold mining, where most of the world’s gold is produced, no chemicals are used in placer mining. In our mining, complete restoration of the mined area is part of the process. You can be confident that the gold used in our jewellery was produced without causing harm to the environment.
Because we control the chain of custody of the gold from the mine to the finished jewellery, we can guarantee its purity, its source, and the fact that no workers were exploited or harmed in its production.
Most of the gold we produce is gold dust, which I melt and use directly in my jewellery without further refining. Our gold is a natural alloy of 87% to 84% pure gold, and approximately 13% to 16% pure silver, with a trace of other minerals. This makes it 20K gold, a perfect alloy for fabricating high quality jewellery. In common with other reputable jewelers, our jewellery is always of a slightly higher carat than it is stamped – that is, it is never less 20K.
I also send some of our gold to a refinery, who return it to me as pure 24K gold. I use 24K gold in some of my designs, and I particularly like the colour contrast of 20K and 24K gold used together.
I also feature natural gold nuggets in some of my pieces. Natural gold nuggets are relatively rare in nature, and, like gem stones, the larger the nugget, the rarer.