How to Become A Jeweler

Jewelers work with precious metals, beads, diamonds and gemstones. They create beautiful pieces of wearable art that are one of a kind.

Should I Become a Jeweler?

Jewelers may have their own businesses or they may work for other high-end jewelers or jewelry designers. Some jewelers also work as freelancers for various high-production designers. Jewelers may create custom made jewelry for a specific audience or for a larger customer base. Jewelers must know the business market and the latest fashion trends very well if they want to run their own jewelry business. To keep in trend and create mesmerizing designs safely with back up, jewelers often use digital platforms such as AutoCAD.

Education Required

A high school diploma or a bachelor’s degree

Major Requirement

Jewelry Design, Gemology, Fine Arts or a related subject

License/Certification

Optional

Experience/Training

1-5 years

Key Skills

Creative, detail-oriented, dexterity, up-to-date in latest jewelry trends, management and interpersonal skills etc.

Annual Mean Salary (2019)

$45,950 (Jewelers and Precious Stone and Metal Workers)

Job Outlook (2018-2028)

-7% (Jewelers and Precious Stone and Metal Workers)

Source: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics

Career Outlook for Jewelers

As per the data reported by the US Bureau of Labor Statistics in 2019, Jewelers and Precious Stone and Metal Workers earned an annual mean salary of $45,950 which amounts to $22.09 mean wage per hour. However, a -7% decline was predicted by BLS for the employment level for this career between 2018 and 2028. It is anticipated to decline because of expected increase in the import of jewelry in addition to the high manufacturing and labor expenses. Moreover, as the trend is shifting towards online retail from traditional stores, jewelers may not prefer to be employed in traditional jewelry stores.

On the other hand, BLS listed Non-depository Credit Intermediation as the top paying industry for this career with an annual mean salary of $58,820 in 2019. New York was named as the state with the highest employment rate (4,500) while, North Dakota was named as the top paying state with an annual mean salary of $69,710 for this career.

Steps to Become a Jeweler

If you like to keep up with the latest jewelry and fashion trends and have the artistic flare to enter this career, here is a complete guide to help you begin.

Step-1: Education

Becoming a jeweler does not really require a formal degree. However, majority of individuals complete a bachelor’s degree in Fine Arts with courses in Gemology, Jewelry Appraisal, Jewelry Designing and Business Management. These courses prepare them to run their own business or have the knowhow of business dealings in this line of work.

Step-2: Work Experience

Many jewelers get field training through apprenticeships or assistantships under the supervision of jewelry masters or experts who have been working in the field a long time. They learn the art of jewelry appraisal and how to recognize the authentic metals or stones etc. Many jewelers become expert Gemologists through the Gemological Institute of America (GIA).

Step-3: Building a Portfolio

To excel in the competitive field of fashion and artistry, every artist (including the jewelers) create their own personalized portfolios. A portfolio is basically a resume that highlights your best work and presents your best qualities and work ethic. All hiring in the artistic world is done through the portfolios and that is why you must take your time and build an impressive one.

Step-3: Gaining Recognition

If you want to make your mark in the fashion industry as a jeweler, you may participate in jewelry competitions like the American Jewelry Design Council New Talent Competition. It is an annual competition that is judged by the most famous and well renowned jewelry designers. Such competitions are a great way of getting some recognition in the industry and making some contacts.

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