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Buying jewelry in Asia


#1

Hello everyone

I don’t know if this topic is appropriate. I 've been making
jewellry for the last two years, but came to the conclusion that, if
I am to make a decent living, I need to import more. I’m already
importing stuff from Mexico, and am wondering if it would be worth it
to go to India, Thailand or Bali next winter to purchase jewellry out
there. I’m putting up a web site, and have been selling through
shops, presentations and parties. Also, would it be safe to buy
online from Asia ? It would be much cheaper.

Thanks Cecile


#2
I don't know if this topic is appropriate. I 've been making
jewellry for the last two years, but came to the conclusion that,
if I am to make a decent living, I need to import more. 

I have been making jewelry since 1992 and I haven’t come to that
conclusion at all. Two years is a short amount of time to be making
jewelry. I didn’t get my timing up until about the two year mark. I
can now do things really fast. It takes time and this is a craft that
takes years to become good at it.

I guess if you have a store and need to supplement your collections
then that is another story. You could look into carrying other
jewelers who don’t have a selling space.

Susan
www.ThorntonStudioJewelry.com


#3

Hello, I suggest that you go to the show in Tucson. Lots of dealers
from all over the world go there. If you don’t already have
connections overseas how are you going to find them once you get
over there? If you want to go to overseas, then check out the trade
shows in the trade, there are shows everywhere. At least that way you
will be dealing with people who are actually in the industry and will
have a better chance of not getting ripped off. Buyer beware is a
really good motto for foreigners.

Goood luck, d


#4
I don't know if this topic is appropriate. I've been making
jewellry for the last two years, but came to the conclusion that,
if I am to make a decent living, I need to import more. 

No, you need to provide a jewelry product that people want! And you
need to find those people who want your product.

Your conclusion is erroneous and counter-productive. You and I can’t
compete with cheap imports. You would be adding to the problem, not
helping anyone. Let WalMart import. Let “mall jewelers” import. They
won’t stop. And you can’t compete with them either.

When my wife and I started we sold jewelry along side our own that
was made in India. We found ours rarely sold. But we sold the
imports. They were cheaper. We accidentally fooled people, on top of
that, by making people think we were importing and not hand crafting.
When we stopped trying to sell (someone else’s) imported stuff, we
began to sell more of our own.

Really, you should eliminate imports all together and stand alone,
IMO.

If all you really want to do is make money, you could work for
someone else. Or heck, sell imports, but what happens to your own
work? Might as well stop making things.

As an American Gem Cutter I have to educate the public on why my
stones are so Expensive. I’ve seen bloodstone cabs for $.50 each
recently, imported. I can’t produce a small one for less than $5.00
and usually for about $30 plus. Faceted stones for $1.00 per carat.
Heck I don’t think I facet anything for under $20 per carat. What
sets me apart from imported work? I am most likely more precise and I
have a better sense of artistic vision than those who cut and produce
for speed. I make one-of-a-kind, not the same thing over and over
again. I am an individual and not a piece of a production machine.
The public just does not understand what’s going on. I really hope
someone else jumps in to explain the import thing better than I and
how it would be counter productive to your cause.

I'm already importing stuff from Mexico, and am wondering if it
would be worth it to go to India, Thailand or Bali next winter to
purchase jewellry out there. 

Gee, we knew some women who “Imported from Mexico”. They didn’t know
they were importing Asian Jewelry from a Mexican. My wife and I
laughed to ourselves over this for years.

In my opinion, it wouldn’t be worth it because of the damage you
will be doing to the public perception of your own work.

I reiterate my opening statement. You need to provide a jewelry
product that people want and you need to find the people who want
your product. Or Quit entirely.

TL Goodwin
Lapidarian/Metalsmith
The Pacifik Image
http://thepacifikimage.com


#5

hi all

I completely agree with your that importing stuff can kill your own
creativity and talent as a jewelry maker or gem cutter. But if one is
working for a living or has intention to make more money then I feel
one cannot completely neglect imported stuff specially from Asian
countries. Here I am not trying to sell my countrys work but trying
to figure out a logical explaination.

Asian countries cost of production is very very less as compared to
the most developed countries. And hence here one can get bloodstones
for even 10 cents (cut,?faceted and polished ) So if one can get the
same same stuff for a fraction of price without compromising on
quality then why not import and sell to people who are looking for
jewelry at less price. ??? Seems logical but then again each one has
their own opinion.

Again, I agree with you that for stuff that requires creativity,
talent and art, one cannot find cheap subsitutes whether imported or
locally made :slight_smile:

all the best
regards
Mithun Rao
www.gehnabazaar.com


#6

Hi Dennis

Thanks a lot for the suggestions.

Actually, I went last winter to the Tucson Gem Show. Unfortunatly, I
was short on time so missed out on a lot. I intend to go back next
winter. A word about the prices, though…they seemed a bit steep
for me to be able to make a reasonable profit back in Montreal. Of
course I don’t have a sales tax number yet, only a number of
entreprise given by the federal government ( on my accountant’advice,
since I don’t earn enough yet, I did not register a company as to
avoid all the paperwork), which allows me to buy wholesale here, but
not in Tucson I beleive. It would be much cheaper and easier to buy
from the Gem Show, or directly from its participants. I’m looking for
hindu or north american, tribal yet elegant looking silver stuff, as
it would mix well with what I already import from Mexico and what I
make myself ( somewhere in between). Can you suggest anyone ? The
Show is so huge, it would help greatly.

Thanks Cecile


#7

Hello Susan

Thanks for your opinion. You are right about two years not being much
time… I love doing it and have set up a nice studio at home in
which I work every day. I don’t have a store, and do not wish to have
one. I organize jewellry events, some in galleries. It’s picking up
slowly and the response is encouraging. But I’m not yet earning enough
to get by, hence the importing idea. Also, I want to design. I am
looking for other jewellrers, so far no luck, but all good things in
due time !

Thanks again Cecile


#8

My own solution to this (although I’m no authority on the subject of
selling as I’ve not sold much yet) is to import gems from Asia and
hand make my jewellery using imported stones. I do import some gems
from the States too if the prices are right - that is, right for me
at my stage of jewellery making.

Helen
UK
http://www.hillsgems.co.uk


#9
I don't have a store, and do not wish to have one. I organize
jewellry events, some in galleries. It's picking up slowly and the
response is encouraging. But I'm not yet earning enough to get by,
hence the importing idea. 

I do not understand how you can sell imported jewelry alongside
yours in a gallery show. Seems the gallery would not be pleased if
they knew you were doing that.

You could have your own designs made for you in Mexico or Asia, but
be aware that many shows do not allow such work. BMAC in Philly, ACC
in Baltimore, etc, and ACRE in Las Vegas do not allow this. Also most
good retail shows. But you could do it in the interim while you
develop your work.