How do I Become a Jewelry Maker?

B. Miller

To become a jewelry maker, or jewelry designer, it requires a lot of creativity as well as patience and practice. There is no right or wrong way to become a jewelry maker, but it is necessary to do more than just make drawings in sketchbooks. It is necessary to really learn how to make jewelry, either by taking classes at a local school, being mentored by another jewelry maker, or researching techniques online and then practicing on one's own.

Earrings.
Earrings.

In general, it is a good idea to receive some form of formal instruction in the basics of jewelry design and the materials needed. After learning the basics, you can then adapt the practices to the way you want to do things, but it will be a challenge to become a jewelry maker without any instruction. In addition, taking a class or two can help you amass all of the necessary materials needed for making your chosen type of jewelry.

Gemstones for jewelry.
Gemstones for jewelry.

The next step to become a jewelry maker is simply practice. Many jewelry makers choose to sketch their designs in a sketchbook first, some create molds, while others just create the design as they go. Whatever process you use, it is important to continue to make jewelry to get practice working with different metals, gemstones, beads, glass, fibers, or anything else you may need to use while creating jewelry. Try to make jewelry in all different styles, not just the styles you personally find appealing. It is important to watch current trends.

A copper bracelet.
A copper bracelet.

One of the benefits, once you become a jewelry maker, is that you will get to work from home and have a low overhead cost when you are first starting out. Once you have a few finished pieces, wear them! Not only will it help you test how your jewelry stands up to everyday use, but it will help you to gauge the reactions of others. Someone may even admire your handmade jewelry and want to buy it.

A gift box containing jewelry.
A gift box containing jewelry.

When you are ready to sell your jewelery, a local craft fair or e-commerce website that features handmade goods is a great place to start. Hand out business cards with your jewelry, and if you want, you may offer to make custom pieces for customers. Once you have some sales, you can ask local stores in the area if they would like to carry your jewelry. While you may not make a lot of money initially, it is possible that at any point a larger client could notice your jewelry and want to sell it on a larger scale.

A bracelet.
A bracelet.
Pair of gold rings.
Pair of gold rings.

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