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What do jewelry makers want?


#1

Hi,

As we prepare for more gem seminars at jewelry schools in the
future, in NY and elsewhere, what are important issues that we and
other gem educators should address when facing new jewelery
designers/makers? Avoiding costly mistakes (imitations, synthetics
and non-declared treatments) seems one obvious concern, but some
designers say durability is a significant factor (no one wants a gem
that fades in color or which falls to pieces when worn). One designer
told me the main lesson she learned from one of our seminars was not
to necessarily trust her stone supplier - sad. So, any thoughts would
be great - and any horror stories.

Thanks
Jack
Dr Jack Ogden
www.gem-a.com


#2

Hi Jack,

Since you are asking, I would like to see a seminar for beginning
jewelers with about gem hardness and how that scale can
help them in their work and help their customers purchase sensibly. A
neat little list of which stones are suitable for which items of
jewelry… and which stones are not… would be a pleasant
addendum to that.

Pet peeve: If I see one more beat-to-hell tanzanite set into a ring
I may scream. Of course the customer bringing this in always looks
at me with great big deer-eyes and says that they “barely ever wear
the ring, and take ever-so-good care of it.”

I am left with the sometimes impossible task of explaining…
without being impolite, why someone would set such a fragile stone
into a ring and sell it. Grrr Tanzanite in a ring is of course only
one example.

I only set fragile, prone to damage stones in rings if the customer
absolutely insists on it, and after I have thoroughly informed them
in writing that due to the hardness, this particular stone…
whatever it is… is likely to easily scratch, mar, break… etc…
when set into a ring.

End of rant #461

:wink:

Lisa (baby goat Diablo has a new trick. Jumping up onto my back or
shoulder. This will not be quite so cute when she grows up a bit.
Topanga, CA USA


#3
Since you are asking, I would like to see a seminar for beginning
jewelers with about gem hardness and how that scale
can help them in their work and help their customers purchase
sensibly. 

Steller has such a list in one of their catalogs. I have it up on
the wall in my shop.


#4

Talk to them about what is readily available and what is not. A one
of a kind or rare gem, an unusual cut or size is fine if all you
make are one of a kinds. But the bread and butter of the business is
being able manufacture a design many times. For that you need a gem
that you can by in the same size and shape many times.

John Wade
Wade Designs Jewelery