Aide-mémoire Jewelry is an inclusive, queer woman-owned small business in Seattle, Washington (the home of the Coast Salish people), founded by designer, Aran Galligan. We focus on handmade, eco-friendly, and conflict-free everyday fine jewelry, wedding bands, and engagement rings. Our mission is to create future heirlooms in a socially and environmentally responsible way, which we hope will become a part of your family story.
How We Make that Happen
Here at Aide-mémoire Jewelry, we only obtain our materials and products from limited-supply, ethical and eco-friendly sources, so you know that the beautiful piece that you are purchasing can be worn with joy and a clear conscience. All pieces listed as "Designed by Aran Galligan" are created by us and carefully handled in-house, and available for purchase on our website or through private consultation in our showroom. We are proud to sell directly to our customers, eliminating the high markups of middlemen, and thereby, keeping prices low. We believe that high-quality craftsmanship, and a sharp focus on an ethically-minded process produces the greatest value that will be treasured for years to come.
Each bespoke piece of jewelry is custom made to order. Our techniques merge tradition with the latest technology – utilizing everything from time honored metalworking skills to computer-aided design, and at times collaborating with local master stone-setters and engravers to ensure the highest quality.
All pieces sold by Aide-mémoire Jewelry are crafted from 100% recycled precious metals—with the exception of some chain components, which may not contain 100% recycled metal. We use ethical conflict-free diamonds (natural recycled, Canadian or Australian, and lab-grown) and ethical fair-trade gemstones. We go beyond the Kimberley Process in sourcing our diamonds to ensure that they truly are conflict-free, as relying on the Kimberley Process alone does not consistently prove that a diamond is conflict-free. Find out more about the diamonds that we work with on our blog post about ethical diamonds. Additionally, all packing materials are reused and reusable, recyclable and compostable, with a minimal use of plastic. We will be using some dead stock mailers for our face masks.
Additionally, Aran regularly volunteers with various non-profit organizations, and Aide-mémoire Jewelry makes monthly contributions to the following organizations:
- Lambda Legal - whose legal, education, and advocacy work touches nearly every aspect of life for lesbians, gay men, bisexuals, transgender people, and everyone living with HIV.
- Higher Heights - who are creating an environment for Black women to run, win, and lead in political offices.
- And we pay rent to the Duwamish Tribal Services whose land we are living on, and they are the stewards of this city.
Aran Galligan - Founder & Designer
Aran is inspired by principles of modern design (simplicity, functionality, and truth to materials) as well as the idea that beauty lies in the imperfect mark of the hand and the natural weathering of materials over time. That subtle imperfections in handmade work, or a patina on a ring after a lifetime of wear, are moments of celebration and beauty.
They are a Seattle transplant from the East Coast, who started their metalsmithing journey in 1996 at Virginia Commonwealth University, then went on to study metals at Penland School of Crafts and SUNY New Paltz. They spend their free time crafting functional objects in various materials and browsing antique malls and salvage yards, searching for unique wood and rusty metal stuff with rich patinas.
Alaina - Studio & Customer Service Coordinator
Alaina has lived in the PNW her whole life and loves living in Seattle (although she could honestly do without the rain). A life-long maker, she has always loved creating things with her hands and studied art and jewelry design in college. When she's not working, you can find Alaina knitting, playing games with her husband and friends, and having her personal space encroached upon by her dogs, Melee & Mayhem.
June Cream - Bench Jeweler
Originally from sunny Southern California, June moved to Seattle in her 20's and quickly found a comfort and sense of home she never knew at the beach. With a degree in art education that has never been used, and a background in the service industry that left her feeling uninspired, June was pleased to have fallen passionately in love with the art of jewelry making and found a new career as a bench jeweler and stone setter. The intricate work she does for Aide-Memoire goes hand in hand with her love of small details and tiny things. When not working at the bench ..... (she is always at the bench), she can be found tinkering in the shed, playing with the dog, and sticking her nose in all the flowers.
Alexa - Social Media and Photo Editing
Alexa is a Filipina-American artist and designer from the Pacific Northwest and currently based in Uruguay. With her background in interior architecture and passion for sustainability and handmade products, Alexa loves to amplify Aide-Mémoire's mission through various platforms. Outside of work, you'll find her exploring new techniques with ceramics, reading tarot, and curled up with a good book.
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