When you’re shopping for jewellery, whether for yourself or a special person in your life, knowing where to begin can feel a little overwhelming. The wealth of web stores and brick and mortar shopfronts, the myriad design possibilities and even the variety of gemstone and metal options can make finding The Right Piece feel as simple as searching for a needle in a haystack. For some people, this is where the potential for a bespoke commission comes in handy.
Though the process of selecting a piece of pre-designed jewellery usually consists of very few steps and ensures a speedy turnaround, that doesn’t always mean it’s fool-proof. Likewise, commissioning a unique piece of jewellery per your personal specifications is not always as inaccessible as it might sound.
Granted, in taking on the challenge of refining a bespoke jewel that adheres to budget and perfectly reflects the nuances of the wearer’s style, taste, and lifestyle, there is of course greater margin for error. However, with the right approach, the act of owning or gifting a piece of bespoke jewellery offers far more scope to get it ‘just right’ than simply picking something out from an existing collection. After all, what could be more considered than a piece of jewellery designed specially?
The good news is, it’s actually pretty easy to avoid getting it wrong - if you know how. If you’d like to design a bespoke piece of jewellery from scratch and ensure that it ticks all the boxes first time round, here are some simple steps you should follow…
Just as you or the special person in your life have your own set of cultural interests and tastes in fashion, so too do jewellery designers. There is no ‘one designer fits all’ and it’s your job to take time to peruse the galleries of a variety of potential jewellers to find a designer whose signature aesthetic is compatible with yours.
Ideally, the jeweller you decide to work with should also offer more than a single meeting or discussion to refine your commission. The process of designing and manufacturing a bespoke piece of jewellery is very rarely linear, and as a bespoke client, you deserve access to an initial consultation, regular email exchanges whilst your design is being developed and a final drawing upon which you wholeheartedly agree. Before you commit to proceeding with any jewellery designer, take a moment to check that all of these services are available to you.
Before your initial consultation, do yourself and your designer a favour and take some time to carve out some fundamental ‘musts’. The clearer the vision in your mind’s eye, the lesser the chances of your design straying from the right path. For example:
To learn more about how to get the most from your bespoke jewellery consultation, have a read of our dedicated blog post.
Once the design process is wrapped up, make you’ve got everything down on paper. This doesn’t just mean a finalised design drawing that you’ve signed off, but a written break-down of the project’s manufacturing steps, expected deadline and fees. Most sound jewellery designers charge an initial deposit which secures the client’s commitment and enables the manufacturing process to begin, before requesting a final payment on completion of the jewel and before collection.
Developing a bespoke piece of jewellery is incredibly exciting and it’s easy to leap enthusiastically into the arms of the first bespoke design that captures your imagination. However, you’ll do yourself a favour in moving at a measured pace and affording yourself time to make your decisions with maximum confidence.
In following the tips imparted by this blog post, you won’t be disappointed by the results of your very first commissioned piece of jewellery.