One of my major goals for The Urban Hippie Studio from its inception was for it to be as environmentally sustainable as possible. When I ship your new piece to your door it comes in a box that you can recycle, without any plastic tape. Each piece is safely swaddled inside a reusable muslin bag, and is protected by up-cycled packing materials that can be recycled, or reused again.
I have saved all of my scrap metal and filings from every piece I’ve ever made in the past four years since I started teaching myself to metalsmith. I use as much of each piece of silver as I possibly can. In fact, many designs came into existence from looking at the scraps I had left and finding creative ways to utilize them. What cannot be used is saved to be recycled so it can be turned into reclaimed metal for future use.
The time has finally come when I’ve been able to check another sustainability goal off my list. Recently, I sent all the scrap silver I had to be recycled. Any new sheet silver I purchase going forward for hand fabrication will be reclaimed/recycled sterling silver. Now you can feel even better about purchasing a mindfully, sustainably handcrafted piece of wearable art from The Urban Hippie Studio.
It feels incredible to finally be able to offer this to you, and it feels like a relief from the anxiety I often have about the ways humans degrade, and leave in ruin the natural world. Being aware of the dirty business of mining operations, what they do to the water and land, and how that then affects people and animals has weighed on me for some time now. I felt I either needed to choose to stop metalsmithing, or find ways that I can do it that causes as little environmental impact as possible. Making art feels like my ikigai (the Japanese concept for what gives your life meaning, your life’s purpose), and the medium I have chosen is metal and stone, so I made it a goal to get to a place where I could make this shift to using more sustainable materials. You can trust that I will continue to move in this direction every opportunity I get, and I will continue to prioritize the earth in my business decisions.
I never have any plans to grow past a certain point of being able to create an abundant life for myself and my family, to sell my designs, or to mass manufacture them. I am not trying to get rich or famous, I simply want the freedom to create the art I want to see in the world from the place within me that needs to express itself in this way, and to do it in the most environmentally friendly way as possible. Thank you for letting me make wearable art for you.