My Rules for Client Interaction, Jewellery Design and Fabrication

I've often been asked by other artisans as to how I interact with my clients and potential clients, my best practices if you will. Below is a brief overview of my methodology.

These are my basic rules for client interaction, jewellery design and fabrication:
  • Previous clients "go to the front of the line". Treat them with kid gloves.
  • Always be polite and on time.
  • Do not discuss politics.
  • Subtlely educate your client on recognizing quality if they are being introduced to fine jewellery.
  • Do not hesitate to say "No thank you." to some commissions.
  • Be upfront with your client on the costs and terms of doing business.
  • Design jewellery that compliments your client's taste and lifestyle.
  • Design jewellery that can be worn daily for years.
  • Design jewellery that is comfortable to wear.
  • Design jewellery that is able to be maintained or cleaned by it's owner.
  • Design jewellery by hand and eye and discussion with your client, not by using computers.
  • Fabricate the jewellery using hand tools and fire.
  • Do not post photos of a finished bespoke commission without your client's approval.
  • Honour and protect your client's privacy.
  • Do not use wax carvings or casting.
  • Do not take on more commissions than your hands can handle.
  • Fit the jewellery to your client and demonstrate the best way to wear the jewellery.
  • REMEMBER: Previous clients "go to the front of the line". Treat them with kid gloves.

Working from home? Maintain your appearance and status!

I had an interesting conversation with a client this morning.

My client is a woman who is the CFO of a large business.  She has a naturally commanding and charismatic presence. She is always well turned out in high quality clothing and all of the accoutrements appropriate to her position.

Along came the pandemic and she is concerned that her presence is demurred when meeting via Zoom or some such. She is spending much less time in the office and much more time at home. She has reorganized her home den to be befitting her role as CFO and has reorganized her home den to be befitting her role.

I understand her situation.

She has asked me to design a bracelet, necklace and earrings (a parure) to be a signature set for her when communicating online. This commission should prove to be an interesting design brief from a very aware and smart professional woman.

Need I mention that the consultations will take place via Zoom or What's App?

Does your video image support and convey the image that you want others to see and feel? Think about that.

Contact me at DanTaylorJewellery@gmail.com for a consultation if you feel that your image needs a renewal.


It is better to have no Jewellery than Fast Jewelry.

Most modern consumers are unable to differentiate between a good quality or a poor quality piece of jewellery. It isn't their fault. They aren't makers or artisans and that is the problem.

In the not so distant past, men and women made and repaired or mended things with their own  hands. They knew what quality was and recognized quality materials and workmanship when they saw it.

Today's consumer is different. Few have made an item that demanded serious hand eye coordination and learned skills.That has made the modern consumer vulnerable to poor quality items that look attractive in a showroom or in a photo in an online sellers website but in fact are more often than not of poor quality.

Fast Fashion has raised an awareness around the tragic sweatshop practices and shoddy quality of the fast fashion clothing industry but little has been mentioned of the fast jewellery industry. It is a problem too.

I can't tell you how many shoddily made engagement rings I've been asked to repair. I usually decline because many can't be properly repaired without basically fabricating a new ring, an expensive proposition. Let's be honest, most fast jewelry is junk jewelry.

By the way, cast jewellery, is NOT handmade jewellery. Porosity, softness and breakage are the hallmarks of cast jewellery. This is how most Fast Jewellery is made.

My advice to the consumer who wishes to purchase a quality jewel such as an engagement ring is to find a goldsmith, often called a jeweller, who uses his hands and not a catalogue. There are very few of us around who actually know how to hand fabricate jewellery. Most people who call themselves jewellers today are just sales people. Once the consumer can recognize quality jewellery, they will avoid these merchants.

Handmade is the way to go if you want quality and durability. Handmade IS Slow Jewellery.

Find a goldsmith who has a goldsmith's bench and uses it most of the day. Purchase from a real jeweller and you'll have something to be proud of and will likely last several lifetimes.

Vive la différence!


A big thank you to my Clients!

I knew that there was a pent up demand for my handmade jewellery but I am humbled by the welcome back that I have received from some of you.

I kept in touch with many of my clients during the lock-down period. It has been a difficult time for many of you and for many makers as well. I am fortunate in that I didn't have staff salaries to worry about, nor do I have any debt. That being said, the idleness and solitude weighed on me too.

Many of you know that I am getting on in years and I plan to spend less time at my bench starting in about 5 years. As it is now, I enjoy every moment that I have in my studio and every interaction with my clientele. I plan on taking on an apprentice after the new year and another 6 months or so afterwards. I will teach them how to make beautiful handmade jewellery using the same age old techniques that I use daily.

Most importantly, I will teach them to listen to you, my clients. You know what you want and you want the jewellery to be of highest quality that handmade can achieve. After all, my jewellery is made by hand and not by soulless robotic machines that make thousands of inferior quality but visually perfect pieces. Well perfect until the unfortunate purchaser wears them a few times. That is when cognoscenti are born. The misery of the mass produced leads to the knowledge about quality of the handmade.

I have seen it happen time and time again. Smart people learn and the others go back to the mall for more abuse and punishment.

I am thankful every day for those that know the difference.

Vive la différence!

Something to remember!

There is something important to remember, pandemic or not, Christmas IS coming and someone special WILL be having a birthday!

I will make and mail your item to most locations in the world. Think ahead if you want that something special for that someone special! This is not a factory and I only have two hands.

I am currently sold out of everything but I have started to make a few of my stock items.

I will be stocking some popular items such as necklaces and heavy bracelets that can be delivered relatively quickly.

I make all my jewellery by hand to be worn by those that understand and appreciate quality.

Gold!

The price of gold has skyrocketed and there is talk of it rising appreciably higher in the near term.

I suspect that the availability of physical gold will be low and that the spot market prices may be shocking.

If you think that you want me to make something for you in gold, contact me so that I can set aside the required metal.