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How to Design Premier Jewelry

By Rose Brown, eHow Contributor How to Design Premier <a target=jewelry thumbnail" title="" class="photo" data-credit="jewelry image by Sid Viswakumar from Fotolia.com" longdesc="http://i.ehow.com/images/a05/pn/ct/design-premier-jewelry-800x800.jpg" />

Premier JewelryThroughout human history, people have enjoyed adorning themselves and their loved ones with jewelry. jewelry comes in a kaleidoscopic array of styles, materials, shapes, sizes, and colors. But all jewelry has one thing in common: before it was made, it was designed. Designing jewelry is a fun and rewarding endeavor. A successful jewelry designer must synthesize creativity, taste, and practicality. Doing so will help to ensure that she creates adornments that are unique from existing designs, hold appeal for many people, and are easy and comfortable to wear. Things You'll Need

  • Pencil
  • Paper
  • Optional: Colored pencils, images and actual pieces of existing jewelry

Instructions

  • 1. Select types of jewelry to design. Consider the following types of jewelry when determining what you want to design: necklaces, bracelets, anklets, rings, earrings, brooches, watches. Decide which appeals most to you.

  • 2. Determine which gender you want to design for. Do you wish to design men's jewelry, women's jewelry, or jewelry for both sexes?

  • 3. Establish what age group you wish to design for. Do you want your jewelry to be tailored to children, teens, young adults, or mature adults?

  • 4. Decide what types of materials you want your jewelry to be fashioned from. Consider using metal, glass, Lucite, fibers, leather, stones, and pearls.

  • 5. Note that metal jewelry can be made of either precious metals or base metals. Remember that precious metals include platinum, gold, and silver, and are used to create fine jewelry. Base metals include brass and bronze, and are used to create more affordable fashion jewelry. Keep in mind that base metals may be coated with precious metals, lending a luxe appearance to jewelry for less money.

  • 6. Keep in mind that stones come in a virtually endless array of types and colors. Remember that precious gemstones, such as emeralds, diamonds, and garnets, are often used in fine jewelry, as are pearls. Other stones, such as rose quartz, carnelian, and onyx, are less costly than precious gemstones.

  • 7. Determine how the different components of each piece of jewelry that you design will be connected. For example, they may be soldered together, linked by rings, linked by hinges, or connected by chain.

  • 8. Decide how the pieces of jewelry will be put on and removed. Will they require clasps? Will they bend open and closed? Will they simply slide on and off, as is the case with most rings? Include any necessary clasps, hook or other components in your design.

  • 9. Look for inspiration for your design all around you. Find ideas in nature, in everyday objects, and in images and existing pieces of jewelry. When you consider existing pieces of jewelry, think of ways you can improve upon their designs, and keep these ideas in mind as you develop your own design.

  • 10. Consider past eras as potential inspiration for the style of your designs. For example, you may find inspiration in the Victorian period, the time of the ancient Greeks, or the 1950s. Conversely, consider designing jewelry that is entirely of its own time and refers to no other period or style.

  • 11

    Draw your jewelry designs using pencil and paper. Render your design ideas as completely as you can. Write down any information you cannot convey by drawing, such as details about materials or size. Use colored pencils to add color to your drawing to indicate the colors of the pieces of jewelry if you desire.

Tips & Warnings

  • Take your design drawings to a professional jewelry maker or manufacturer to discuss making your designs a reality. Or, refer to your design drawings as you obtain supplies and make the jewelry yourself.

  • Consider the types of jewelry that have been consistently popular for a lengthy period of time. Identify what you think makes them popular from a design standpoint, such as materials, construction, and everyday wearability. Keep these aspects in mind as you develop your own designs.

  • Remember that certain components of jewelry can be made of glass or Lucite, as well as an entire piece of jewelry. Consider incorporating beads, pendants, or other accents made of glass or Lucite into a metal piece of jewelry. Or create entire pieces with these materials, such as molded Lucite bangle bracelets.

  • Keep in mind that materials such as fibers---which include ribbon, cord, thread, and yarn---and leather, are softer, more pliable, and less durable than other materials. Their relative fragility is partly what gives them appeal; at the same time, they cannot always withstand the wear and tear of jewelry made with some other materials, such as metals.

Rose Brown

Rose Brown began writing professionally in 2003. Her articles have appeared in such Montana-based publications as "The Tributary" and "Edible Bozeman." She earned a bachelor's degree in literature from the University of California at San Diego, and a master's degree in English from Montana State University. Brown has been a professional florist since 1997.

References

  • "Jewelry Design"; Carissa Kowalski Dougherty, 2008.

Resources

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