In 1998 the first Canadian diamond mine opened in the Northwest Territories, producing high quality gemstones. The news was exciting because the diamonds were excellent color and clarity, and the deposits were significant. Having a North American diamond industry would bring more stability to the US jewelry business, especially as armed conflict in several African diamond-producing countries had increased.
The Kimberly Process was adopted by the United Nations and the world-wide diamond industry in 2003 in response to the illicit African diamond trade. It created a certification process to remove conflict diamonds from the market. The “Big Three” diamond mining companies—De Beers, BHP Billiton and Rio Tinto—who controlled nearly all the rough diamonds entering the supply chain, became fully compliant with the Kimberly Process. Soon 99% of the new diamonds entering the market were guaranteed conflict-free, and remain so today.
Shortly after clients began requesting conflict-free Canadian diamonds, which are mined, cut and polished in the Northwest Territories (NWT). They are certified conflict-free by the provincial government; the stones never leave North America. In 2005 Seattle Diamonds added certified Canadian-origin diamonds to our regular inventory, and they have been a strong seller since. Importing NWT-certified diamonds directly from cutters in Canada to our showroom in Seattle guarantees they are conflict-free.
With the success of Canadian diamonds, we decided to take the “ethical jewelry” idea one step further and started sourcing designers dedicated to fair trade gold and gemstones. That is when we found Toby Pomeroy, a master goldsmith from Corvallis, Oregon who carefully sources his gemstones and precious metals with the highest ethical standards. He is an industry leader in fair trade and fair-mined jewelry, and uses Canadian diamonds exclusively.
Pomeroy designs creative, timeless pieces by hand. The final products are works of art, and are in high demand. Few companies specialize in using reclaimed gold like Pomeroy. The company manufactures gold fashion jewelry including earrings, pendants and bracelets. A complete line of engagement and wedding rings are also available.
If “buying local” is important to you, consider a piece by Toby Pomeroy sold by Seattle Diamonds. The diamonds are from Canada, and the jewelry is designed and manufactured in Oregon and Seattle Diamonds is a locally-owned independent business who supports and contributes back to our community.