A jewelry designer is someone who creates blueprints or designs of jewelry, either for handcrafting or mass production. Jewelry designers are also called by various names, like goldsmiths, gold workers, silversmith, silverworker, or simply makers or shapers.
Take note that not all designers craft their own designs, and not all makers or shapers design their own pieces of jewelry. A jewelry maker can be a designer, but not all designers are jewelry makers.
Who makes gold jewellery? Goldsmiths and gold workers are adept in shaping this precious metal and possess the tools and skills necessary to create gold jewelry without damaging the metal during production.
Kinds of Handmade Jewelry
Handmade jewelry has always been beloved in the jewelry market because of their artisan origins and the care and skill that have been put into making them. There are several types of approaches to creating handmade jewelry, and we will be discussing them with you below.
- Assembled jewelryAssembled jewelry -is among the easiest to spot in the market (there is high supply) due to the ease at which they can be handcrafted. Assembled jewelry is often personalized, and in some instances, people can select what goes into the custom-made ones.
This category includes simple necklaces, bracelets, bangles, earrings, and other types of jewelry that are made with pre-cast pendants, beads, and other ornamentations. Creating this type of jewelry is recommended for first time DIY jewelry makers who want to try crafting at home so they can sell their wares on their websites.
- Wire-wrapped jewelryWire-wrapped jewelry is distinctive because they use multiple loops of wire to frame or hold up the various gemstones, charms, beads, and other ornamentations added to the design to make the piece of jewelry stand out. Wire-wrapped jewelry is beautiful and unique, and also more labor-intensive than other types of handmade jewelry.
The simplest form of wire-wrapped jewelry is comprised of several coils or loops of wire with embellishments ranging from precious gemstones to various types of beads made of different materials like ceramic beads, wood beads, and even crystal beads.
The beauty of wire-wrapped designs relies specifically on the spacing and arrangement of embellishments and beadwork. On the other hand, there are more complex designs where the makers are able to create intricate loops and other designs with the wire itself, which triples both the beauty and the perceived value of the jewelry.
Jewelry worn by beauty queens often shows these intricate wire designs. Intricate wire wrapping requires years of practice and requires skills learned over a long period of repeated creation.
If you want to try your hand in making complex designs with wire, we recommend that you obtain jewelry wire of different gauges so you can experiment with your designs using various wire thicknesses.
- Fabricated jewelryWhat differentiates fabricated jewelry from the two previous classes of jewelry is that it involves several more steps, and it may not emphasize the use of additional coils or wraps of wire.
This category includes complex fine jewelry with non-traditional designs and art jewelry that usually goes above and beyond to test the limits of what is acceptable as jewelry. Creators tend to use multiple metalsmithing techniques and they do a lot of cutting and sewing, too, to get the smallest details into individual parts of the jewelry.
Bench skills are a must, and it would be challenging for someone with no jewelry making experience to succeed immediately with fabricated jewelry. In addition to cutting, polishing, and sawing, goldsmiths/silversmiths may also resort to soldering joints multiple times to create intricate embellishments in just one region of the jewelry.
Due to the intricacy of the steps, many novice creators actually take studio classes to learn the basics first. Community colleges and universities also offer whole courses on this type of artisan jewelry.
Take note that fabricated jewelry is not limited to really expensive materials. Non-metal and non-gemstone materials can also be used and still require high levels of manipulation depending on the vision of the blueprint.
- Beaded jewelryBeaded jewelry is well-loved because you can go as simple or as complex as you want, depending on your vision of what your signature jewelry should look like. As the name suggests, beaded jewelry features strings of beads.
The common practice is to use one type of bead for each piece of jewelry, but there are also instances when two or three variants of beads are combined in a single string. Earrings, bracelets, and necklaces can all be beaded constructions.
The creator can also expand to other items like pouches and purses and use the same principles of jewelry design to create beautiful and attractive ornamentations on the said items. Examples of beads used for beaded jewelry are wooden beads, gemstones, pearls, plastic beads, Swarovski crystals, and more. The band can be made from copper wire, cotton thread, base metal wire, etc.
- Stamped jewelryStamped jewelry is another low-cost type of jewelry for home creators. The hand-stamping process allows the creator to create several designs at once with little difficulty.
The creator will only need to invest in simple hand tools and sheets called “blanks” that can be purchased from specialty companies. The blanks are made of different kinds of metals, so you can choose which metal is best for your pieces.
The most common metals used for hand stamped jewelry are aluminum and copper. The stamped out shapes can also be custom-engraved to fit the needs of the buyer.
The creator can also purchase prefabricated stamp designs that range from generic letters to the shape of animals and different theme packs like holiday objects, birthday objects, etc.
- Enameled jewelryEnameled jewelry involves heating the metal parts of the jewelry and melting glass powder on top of them. This technique is used specifically for metal jewelry as the heated glass powder adds another layer of color to the jewelry that makes designs pop. Creators use either handheld torches or small kilns to complete the process.