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How To Start Your Own Jewelry Line
Jewelry is one of the most popular things to make and sell online. Maybe you have a DIY challenge but have an incredible online business idea with an existing audience and are looking for a creative way to make money.
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Regardless of your motivation or skill level, understanding how to start a successful jewelry business at home or anywhere has its own considerations and complexities.
One of the first questions to ask yourself is: cool or fashion? Or maybe your interests lie somewhere in between. Each category has its own ingredients, production process, price point and customer profile:
Once you’ve narrowed down a broad category for your jewelry startup business, it’s time to carve out a niche for your products. Start by defining your ideal customer (Classic, Trendy, Brides, Socially Conscious Consumers, etc.) and decide if your products are for a specific event (wedding, party, everyday, etc.) . This will determine how you market them to your target audience.
Researching trends is one way to determine (and validate) your chosen direction, and it’s an important step in understanding how to start an online jewelry business. Read fashion and jewelry blogs and publications and follow the influencers in the space to stay on top of the trends for each upcoming season. By using Google Trends, you can see detailed global search volume for a specific term.
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Alternatively, you can look at nearby consumer trends or habits, such as the desire for customizable experiences such as engraving, or ethically sourced materials.
But business owners don’t just have to follow the trends – you can use them to start your own jewelry business too. That’s exactly what Beko founder and designer Corrine Anestoulos did when she launched her collection based on personal style.
“I felt somehow, just suddenly, that I had found a market for something new and meaningless,” she says. “But that was just my taste.” When she launched, Corinne was working with brass finishes. “No one else was doing it,” she says, adding that shiny silver was the trend at the time.
Now, while her collections change every year with trends in the jewelry industry, the common thread that defines her brand and drives repeat business is a recognizable look.
Wire Wrapped Medium Gemstone
Success as a newbie in any aspect of the fashion industry depends on strong aesthetics, unique designs and consistent branding. Before hiring a designer to develop branding and individual pieces, business owners should walk you through several exercises to define your overall signature style.
Camille Enrico jewelry is known for its unique combination of metals and textiles – giving each piece instant recognition and harmony with the rest of the design.
Depending on how you want to be inspired, you can set up a Pinterest board, design your own digital mood board, use a mobile jewelry design app, or create physical inspiration on a bulletin board or sketchbook.
Collect images, colors and textures from nature, architecture, fashion or travel and then identify emerging themes. Don’t stop being inspired, says Corinne. “I always draw inspiration and collect inspirational images, wherever I am.”
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Creator Josie Bullard calls mood boards “a great way to plan ahead, establish an aesthetic, remind yourself of your goals, and provide you with lots of inspiration.”
Remember, brand is different from branding. A brand is your voice, mission, vision and your brand story. It tells your potential customers how you feel about your products. Fashion shopping is often emotional, and emerging brands can win over customers by connecting on a personal level, even through something as simple as a business name. Tell your story through your About page, include yourself in your social media posts, and share the process and inspiration behind your designs.
The next part of how to start a handmade jewelry business is branding. Branding refers to the more strategic elements that visually represent your brand – logo, packaging, business cards and your website.
Once you’ve established your product aesthetic, chosen a business name that resonates with your audience, and appeals to your customer profile, it’s important to identify the overall look that defines your brand. This is a necessary step even for a small business, so don’t rush it.
Jewelry Line On Behance
If you want to learn how to make jewelry as a successful business venture, you don’t need to build an expensive and complicated website. At low cost, you can set up a store with a free theme and develop the logo yourself using a free online logo maker. We also have resources to help you find domain name ideas if you need some inspiration too.
Keep in mind that you’ll still want to set aside a portion of your budget for professional product photography. We will discuss the importance of photography for jewelry later in this post. With these tools, it’s easy to see how to start a jewelry business at home.
For a bigger budget, work with a designer to translate your vision into a complete branding package for your business – from logo and website to packaging and marketing materials. Peruse the portfolios of Design Experts to find a designer whose work matches your tastes.
A formal business plan may not be required unless you intend to pitch your idea to investors or seek other forms of external funding first. However, it can be a good exercise to check out some business plan templates to help you understand your target customer, goals, business model, costs and growth plan. It is also helpful to learn how to run a jewelry business.
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What do you need to understand how to make jewelry? How you develop your products – by hand or in a factory, in-house or outsourced – depends on the complexity of the design, the price point, the materials and the skill level required. In this section, we will discuss how to make jewelry in four ways:
Handcrafting can be one of the most popular methods of producing fine and one-of-a-kind (OOAK) jewelry. Depending on the material and design, some methods of producing fine jewelery and OOAK require special training/certification and expensive equipment. If you want to learn how to start a handmade jewelry business, you may need to learn some of these methods, including:
If you’re not sure which route you want to take, consider starting with free online tutorials. Once you know what field you want to study, you can invest in paid classes or apprentice under an experienced craftsman to expand your skill set.
If you want to learn how to start a handmade jewelry business without investing time and energy in a new skill, there are other options. Handmade costume jewelry often involves combining existing elements – chain, wire, beads, cast pendants, etc. – and requires no special training or equipment other than basic hand tools.
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This type of business is easy to expand, as you can buy elements in bulk and create templates for assembly by an employed production team.
If the design and production aspects of your business make you happy — and not the actual work of making jewelry — consider outsourcing or hiring other roles to help you grow the creative work. Corrine, the founder of Beko, visits local universities with famous fashion communication programs to find her interns. “I never look for someone who is interested in design,” she says. “What I need is someone to help me free up my time so I can design more.”
Instead of making the jewelry yourself, someone else can make your designs for you. This is not ideal for fine, custom or OOAK jewelry, but can be cost effective for fashion jewelry produced in large quantities. There are two main options for outsourcing to wholesale suppliers if you want to learn how to start a jewelry business at home:
Accurate sketches or 3D renderings of your design are essential if you are outsourcing to a manufacturer. There are many options depending on your skill level and budget:
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The most unconventional method of production involves uploading your design to a print-on-demand app. Your original designs are 3D printed or created from stainless steel, wood, plastic, gold or silver and shipped directly to your customers.
If you choose to make jewelry in-house, you will need workshop space for you and your team. When setting up this space, consider the following:
“The jeweler’s bench, flex shaft, and your safety will be the most important features,” says Gillian, founder of the Canadian jewelry brand Hawkley. “The flex shaft is a great and versatile tool that you can use to drill, finish and polish your pieces.” She also recommends using a face mask and safety goggles – and for those with long hair to pull it back so it doesn’t get tangled.
If your production team is larger or your needs are a little more complex – for example a metalworking workshop or silversmith – consider an out-of-home commercial space. If it’s out of your budget at launch, check out a co-op studio space or share the cost of the space and equipment with other creatives. Gillian splits her studio with two other businesses.
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