Sustainability & Ethics.
Sustainability and environmental responsibility are a huge part of my work and my life. And as my family will tell you, they always have been ( I was the shouty big sister making everyone turn their lights and taps off)!
Minimising waste of materials and energy, using recycled and reclaimed materials, using non toxic treatments and renewable energy are all a matter of course. I am lucky to be able to work from home and to have a garden to provide inspiration and materials.
Below is a list of some ways I minimise the environmental damage of my practice:
Use of Eco-silver, recycled silver and recycled copper and brass (which I collect myself)
I use vinegar, citric acid and oxalic acid to clean and etch work, instead of the more toxic acids traditionally used. When finished I can use the acid to clean the kitchen sink!
I use a tumbler polisher and no polishing compounds which are incredibly damaging to the environment.
I use eggs to oxidise (blacken) my silver....often our own duck eggs.
My home and studio are all solar powered. All of our hot water comes from solid fuel/biomass (which we grow and reclaim).
All of my packaging is recycled and recyclable, reused, reuseable, repurposed and usually biodegradable!
I keep bees, ducks and grow veg. The ducks free range round our garden and are part of the family. I keep my bees in a sustainable, natural way- we dont take the honey, or interfere in the kind of brood they raise. We just give them a healthy home and keep an eye on their health. When I use their honeycomb, I take only the edgecomb, which they dont use for stores or brood, and I gently remove it without disturbing them.