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Make Money Repairing Jewelry

Jul 5, 2008
A lot of bead jewelry and custom jewelry makers work around the clock putting together custom pieces, coming up with new jewelry ideas and hunting for new supplies and materials to use in the inevitable next piece.

Making jewelry is a fun hobby and it can be very rewarding, but it can also drain your creativity if you're making a lot of jewelry and it can even become tedious if you've come up with a wonderful idea but have to spend a lot of time lining up beads, joining links or making lots of similar custom pieces, whether its metal-working or glass lampwork beads that you're making.

There is, however, a way to avoid jewelry making burn out and make some extra money while using your jewelry making skills: jewelry repair!

Repairing existing jewelry uses your jewelry making skills as well as some new creative processes you may not have normally used. Instead of making a necklace or bracelet from scratch, you generally need to take an existing pattern and find beads or pieces to replace missing pieces or at least ones that compliment the current piece.

Repairing jewelry also requires much less investment in raw materials and supplies on your part. Creating a piece of bead jewelry may involve over a pieces, including the beads, wire, clasps and pendants involved. When repairing a piece of jewelry you generally have most of the parts and may online need in new stringing material, a new clasp or a few replacement beads. You can often charge just as much to repair a piece of jewelry as you would to make it, so repairing jewelry is much more profitable from the outset.

Here are some more general tips to remember when repair jewelry for customers:

Don't be afraid to get a little creative, especially if you have to fill in missing beads or pieces, but check with the customer first. Some people want their jewelry to be repaired to the exact look it had before, some don't mine minor bead or clasp changes.

Matching pieces to older jewelry is often next to impossible. You have a better chance of finding replacement beads or pieces that are similar, though sometimes matching the color of certain gemstones can be a frustrating endeavor.

Keep an eye out for structural weaknesses in old jewelry pieces. Even though a clasp may not be broken, you may want to suggest replacing it if it old and worn out.

Don't be afraid to advertise your service and price yourself as though you're making a new piece. Not many people advertise jewelry repair as a service. Lots of women have jewelry pieces tucked away in jewelry boxes or drawers that are broken or in bad repair.

Don't be afraid to price yourself accordingly. Often times you're repairing a piece of jewelry that holds special meaning or is a particular favorite of your customer. You're providing a service of not just fixing a piece of jewelry, but often you're helping restore a memory or feeling!

Finally, remember to have fun with it! Both repairing and making jewelry are lots of fun and can be pretty profitable, but it's up to you to find the right balance to keep you happy and making money at the same time.
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