You might be okay with your cell phone case or socks being mass-produced. These things face a lot of wear and tear. What does it matter if no extra special attention was given to their production? Companies have to use mass production to keep up with demand, right?
That may be something you’re able to overlook concerning things like kitchen accessories, hair ties, plastic cups, and lipstick. But your jewelry is worth so much more. Mass production is all about using as little effort as possible to produce a passable result. Is that good enough for you when it comes to your jewelry?
Think back on the gifts you have given and received over the years. Which were more valuable to you – the gifts that came from a store shelf or gifts that were made with care and attention for one person only? Every piece of jewelry you receive or give represents a story. We think that story is immensely important, and that’s why your jewelry deserves to be handcrafted.
What Is Handcrafted Jewelry?
With all the specific terms of the jewelry world, the word ‘handcrafted’ might be a little unclear to you. That’s okay. We’re going to explore together what it means to offer the best quality through handcrafted pieces. For now, remember that handcrafted means that a piece of jewelry was made with care and attention.
Marks Of Handcrafted Jewelry:
Made By Hand, Not Machine
The alternative to handcrafted jewelry is mass-produced jewelry. This way of producing jewelry has only the bottom line in mind. That’s because mass production means a product is made more quickly and can be sold more frequently. This is great for retailers but doesn’t really keep the consumer’s interests in mind.
Machine-made jewelry retailers may be able to offer a better price to consumers because speed and quantity are the top priorities. Because they don’t employ dedicated craftsmen and artisans to create your jewelry, they may be able to charge you slightly less than their handcrafting counterparts.
You might be tempted to go for a retailer that offers a lower price point, but ask yourself what prices represent with your jewelry – quality or a product that was quickly made en masse.
‘Handcrafted’ is so much more than a label for a piece of jewelry. Being made by hand means every piece of jewelry has a human connection to it. A machine might be precise in its own ways, but people can catch mistakes that machines can’t. People can add subtle nuances that can only be done through a living person’s creativity.
Choosing handcrafted jewelry means your story suddenly collides with the maker at the other end of the diamond necklace or engagement ring, and you get to reap the benefits of their years of skill and dedication to their craft.
Attention To Detail
Jewelry, and especially fine jewelry, is marked by precision and excellence. Some think that by taking human error out of the equation with machine produced jewelry, mistakes will be more easily avoided. But that’s not the whole story.
How often have you received a package containing only 2 of something instead of three, or a certain stowaway piece of candy end up in an entirely different package of candy? This is because machines make mistakes, too. Often, these mistakes are simply a result of the sheer speed at which machines operate to mass-produce a product. Simply put: machines are not void of error.
Handcrafted jewelry relies on a real human being to carefully look for mistakes and create designs with the wearer in mind. There’s a certain empathy to handcrafted jewelry if you think about it. The maker sacrifices their time and care to make a beautiful piece through attending to every bezel, prong, stone, and band.
One At A Time
One more mark of handcrafted jewelry is that it is made one at a time instead of a multitude at once. Each material component deserves an individual moment to be formed into the piece your loved one will wear for ages. You can take pride in knowing the piece you gift them was always individually made, just for them.
Because handcrafted jewelry is often made in much smaller quantities than mass-produced jewelry, it uses more sustainable practices. Humans are clearly capable of error, but they generally know about how much material to use when crafting a piece. This means that resources don’t become over-used like they might with the practices of mass-production.
One more benefit to this mode of crafting jewelry is that retailers can usually keep expenses down since they are not using as much energy to power machines. A lot of the designing, crafting, production, and sale can be done in-house with retailers that make jewelry by hand. Of course, this means the best quality for the best price.
Additional Benefits Of Noémie Handcrafted Jewelry
At Noémie, we deliver exquisite quality in the jewelry we make, from the jewelry itself to the production practices we model. Not only are our handcrafted pieces made with attention and care, but they’re also made from fine materials, with ethically-sourced diamonds. Let’s explore and expand what it means for Noémie to use these quality materials.
Why Aren’t All Diamonds Ethical?
If you didn’t know, the diamond mining industry has been problematic and even fatal at times. Diamonds are a precious resource sought by many. The result of this high-value resource occurring naturally in the earth is seen in a few different ways.
First, diamonds can be similar to money in many regions, seen as a kind of high-value currency. As such, they have been caught in the cross-fire as wars break out over the stones. If the wars were not started over the stones, they became a dangerous leverage point for one side to get the upper hand over the other.
This is a contrast between the beauty of this naturally-occurring gift from the earth and human beings’ affairs. Because of this terrible occurrence, these kinds of diamonds are often referred to as ‘blood diamonds.’
Second, sometimes artisanal diamond miners in communities are unequipped for the ethical production of such a valuable resource. Since production in these areas sometimes becomes about survival, working conditions can become quite rough on miners and their families. This includes long workdays, poor tools, extreme weather conditions, and even child labor used in the mining process.
Another source of conflict with mining diamonds is a mining group’s consideration of the earth, environment, and local economy. Without regard to sustainable mining practices, the local region surrounding a diamond mine may begin to suffer as their resources begin to be depleted.
Noémie provides conflict-free diamonds in two ways. First, Noémie has a lab-grown diamond option for many pieces of jewelry. When a diamond is lab-grown, it uses the same natural processes that occur in nature to create a stone that is traceable and free of conflict.
While some think a lab-grown diamond is less valuable, this is simply not the case. A diamond is the pinnacle of value and beauty, no matter if it is grown in the ground or in a laboratory.
Next, diamonds that are not lab-grown are purchased from reputable sources. These diamonds have to be able to be traced to a source to ensure they haven’t been used for unsavory purposes. They come from legitimate mining practices. Your conscience can rest assured when you purchase a handcrafted piece of diamond jewelry from Noémie.
At Noémie, our commitment to handcrafted jewelry means we design, source, create, and then sell our pieces directly to you. As you research the market for all kinds of pieces you could gift to your dear one, keep in mind the heartbeat of a piece that has been handcrafted.
The legacy of a piece of jewelry begins with materials used and is strengthened by the time it receives as it’s carefully forged into a ring, necklace, bracelet, or earring. That legacy is fully realized once it’s worn by one special person, and that person can enjoy their gift even more, knowing it was made with such care.