Summary: Your custom jewellery buying experience will go smoother if you take these 7 things into account. From choosing good metals and stones to taking your jewellery designer’s advice, you will want to read these points and take them to heart.
Having a piece of jewellery custom-designed means you and your professional jewellery crafter make all of the choices about the piece’s design, what metals it will be made from and what gemstones will be included. You’re totally in control, of course, but you have the benefit of a seasoned professional at your side through every step of the process.
You may have whatever it is that you want since you’re footing the bill, but some choices make a lot more sense than others. With all that decision making power comes some significant decisions, and you’ve got to make sure you have all the information you need to make educated selections.
Here are seven important notes to consider when designing custom-made jewellery pieces:
1. Select the best gemstones you can afford. Allow your tastes and your budget to determine the quality and kind of precious stones you choose. Industrially produced jewellery is usually made with lower quality stones to keep prices low, but you should not skimp on a custom piece that might become a family inheritance.
2. Design a solid piece. Narrow, delicate patterns are gorgeous, but in many metals they aren’t very durable. Choose metals that are as hard as possible, then choose a design that utilises the metals characteristics. You do not want a flimsy piece that requires continued attention to maintain.
3. Insist upon high-end craftsmanship. Select the best jewellery designer you can find, then demand that he or she doesn’t cut any corners in the design and construction process. Each detail should be home made, hand-polished and perfect in every way. Since you are paying for the best, you need to get it.
4. Know your gold. If you’d like a gold piece, understand that 18 K gold is soft and easy to work with. But you may prefer, for example, 14 K gold for its toughness and capability to hold an intricate design. Discuss your selections with your designer, and do not choose your gold based only on budget.
5. Always consider long-term durability. Remember that every choice you make impacts heaviliy on the piece’s durability over time, so accept the jeweller’s guidance about which stones, metals, mounting techniques and design details will wear well during one or two decades.
6. Stay flexible — and select a flexible jeweller. You can have things precisely as you would like them, but your design professional might have ideas which will enhance your plans, so listen carefully. Choose a designer that will listen to your input as well.
7. Value your jeweller’s experience. When contracting with a custom jewellery designer, you are not just purchasing the materials and his or her time. You’re buying experience also , so use the guidance, comments and feedback that a good designer will provide. Following expert advice will make your final piece better.
When making custom jewellery alongside a professional designer, take advantage of each opportunity for help on design elements, metals and stones. Remember, the designer is an expert who wants to create for you an one-of-a-kind art piece that you and your family can enjoy for many years — maybe centuries.
Custom-designed jewellery is too vital and long lasting to cut any corners.
Petra Bierberg is owner of Petra Jewellery Design and writes about designer engagement rings because she understands how much joy valuable stones and superbly made metals can bring to a family. If care is taken during the design process, a piece can last a life-time — or longer.
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