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ABOUT

Welcome to RAW Copenhagen. My name is Karina Johansen and I am the founder and designer behind RAW. The RAW designs are for fabulous females like you, who love fuss free Scandi simplicity and understated chic designs to express your femininity and unique personality. 

Karina Johansen, founder and designer at RAW Copenhagen, former human rights diplomat turned sustainable jewellery designer

Do you share my belief that it is possible to look good, feel good and do good at the same time? And that you can marry chic with being sustainable?


Well, RAW isn't just about making you look even better, but just as much about making you feel better. I want you to find comfort in the fact that I use ethically and sustainably sourced materials almost exclusively in my designs and packaging. With a background in human rights and sustainable development, I am adamant to prove that you can do business more ethically, and I would like to invite you on my journey. I work with ethically sourced gemstones, ECO-silver and vermeil pieces made by artisan silversmiths, as a means to promote environmental and social sustainability.

By wearing a RAW jewellery piece, you are also doing good. I give 10 % of the annual profit to charity. The donations go to the indigenous silversmith communities in Thailand, from where I source the handmade beads and some of the charms I use.  The funds are used to sponsor scholarships, school dinners, water and sanitation projects.

Want to stay informed about new designs and discounts as well as go green and sustainable living tips, then sign up to my newsletter to stay connected.

 

MISSION

My mission with RAW is to create fuss free, Scandi chic, feminine jewellery that marries your desire for a more understated chic look with you wish to live a more sustainable way of life.

 

RAW'S DESIGNS

RAW Copenhagen designs are inherently Danish in their DNA. They are minimalist and RAW, no sweetening thrills or ornate settings. I mean, why complicate life, when you can go Scandi simple? 

My pieces focus on the raw origins and natural beauty of the materials to play against each other and speak for themselves. The designs conjoin rough against smooth - and matt against shiny, and are highly inspired by nature, not least the light and texture of the Danish beaches I grew up by. However, haven lived and worked for years in and on West Africa, this region's beading tradition also highly inspires me.

 

THE RAW ETHOS AND VALUES

In Danish we have a saying that goes 'råt for usødet', which means ‘raw unsweetened’. It relates to putting things directly as they are - without any niceties. Well, the RAW fact is that the jewellery industry can be a dirty one, environmentally and ethically not least in the developing countries, from where many of the raw materials for the jewellery sector originate. This include the use of child labour, poor and unsafe working conditions, pollution and infringement on indigenous peoples’ rights, when mining, refining and making the jewellery. However, the good news is, it does not have to be this way.  

It is my objective with RAW to help lay the foundation for an alternative sustainable way of making jewellery along with jewellery lovers like you and other makers.

Within the clothing industry, Fashion Revolution (Click here to learn more), is already shaking up the way in which business is done, seeking to ensure minimal environmental and social impact of extracting the raw materials, protection and respect of fundamental human rights as well as to ensure fair remuneration of workers.

Pushing and supporting the sustainability agenda is at the core of RAW Copenhagen’s ethos along with my love for jewellery design. There is still a long way to go, however, things are starting to change. You can now get recycled silver, as well as fair mined and fair trade gold and silver.

Coloured gemstones, however, are amongst the most difficult commodities to source ethically. They change hands many times across many countries and lack codification like there is for the diamond trade. RAW Copenhagen can currently only secure ethical sourcing at the gemstone cutters’ stage of the supply chain, but I keep pushing and looking for new suppliers. Further coloured gemstones provides the livelihood for millions of the world's poorest and most vulnerable groups, so from a social sustainability point the view, you shouldn’t stop trading in coloured gemstones, but rather push for them to be traded on fair trade like principle from mine to market to ensure everyone involved in the jewellery sector has a sustainable livelihood and the environment suffers the least harm possible during mining.

Welcome to RAW Copenhagen. If you have any questions, please just pop me an e-mail: raw@rawcopenhagen.co.uk

 

Karina

xxx