Defining Ethical Fashion Jewelery
Aulerth is founded by UT Austin grad Vivek Ramabahadran (IANS photo)
Over the last decade, fashion connoisseurs have demanded a revolution, favoring labels that prioritize sustainability. Jewelry, on the other hand, receives very little of this attention. From purposefully opaque gemstone sourcing to highly polluting mercury dumping in gold extraction and processing, the fine jewelry industry, which relies on nature’s miracles for inspiration and value, is ironically its worst offender.
Did you know that a single 9 gm 22 kt gold ring produces more than 20T of toxic waste, including cyanide and mercury pollution? Overall, gold mining produces nearly 150 million T of CO2 emissions and nearly 6 billion T of toxic waste, in addition to significant environmental damage. All of this is exacerbated by the rampant environmental destruction caused by diamond and gemstone mining. To address this issue, the concept of Aulerth was born. The brand represents a conscious, guilt-free version of our fine jewelry indulgence.
In 2022, Vivek Ramabahadran’s brand, Aulerth, will collaborate with India’s top designers to launch the country’s first ethical jewelry brand for weddings and evening events. Aulerth has collaborated with Tribe Amrapali, Suneet Varma, and JJ Valaya to create lines for the modern Indian woman.
Vivek Ramabhadran, founder of Aulerth, says, “Aulerth is on a continuous pursuit to bridge the seemingly disparate worlds of being couture-inspired and consciously made – with an underlying foundation of bringing more responsibility and mindfulness to the end-to-end process spanning design, production, merchandising, and packaging.”
Vivek, a self-confessed outsider to the world of design, brought a renewed glitter to Swarovski (as vice president and managing director for South Asia – spanning the Middle East, India, and Southeast Asia), and now uses that same approach to fill a desperate need in the world of jewelry. Vivek’s greatest strength lies in bringing objective analysis to the world of design – a way of thinking honed over a successful stint at McKinsey, serving consumer goods clients across the emerging markets of the Middle East and Africa.
Additionally, Vivek has a bachelor’s degree from IIT Madras, a masters in Manufacturing from the University of Texas-Austin, and an MBA from INSEAD.
Suneet Varma’s collection is inspired by the timeless beauty of Mughal architecture. Pastel bursts in pale pinks, minty greens, and white stones fill the gaps between more traditional pieces in rich decadent palettes. The Taj Mahal’s minar and the spectacular appeal of inlay work, frescos, and meenakari from Mughal-inspired art forms transport you to another era while remaining grounded in Aulerth’s ethical promise.
JJ Valaya’s jewelry collection embodies the essence of – The Royal Nomad with an Art Deco bent. The couturier extends his design sensibilities from the acclaimed ‘Rumeli’ line to Aulerth’s jewelry collection. Carved gemstones are set in exquisite metal frameworks with zircon details, intricate enameling adorned with a bandish work of rose pearls and tumbles and elevated by textured metals. This collection of conscious jewelry is inspired by the Ottoman Empire, combining a symbiotic melange of floral nuances and Aztec strokes.