Red Nymph Jewelry

Red Nymph Jewelry

Jewelry is one of the most popular things to make and sell online. Perhaps you’re DIY-challenged but have an incredible online business idea and an existing audience and are looking for a creative way to make money.

Determine your products

Whatever your motivation or skill level, understanding how to start a successful jewelry business at home or anywhere comes with its own set of considerations and complications.

One of the first questions to ask yourself is: fine or fashion? Or maybe your interest lies somewhere in between. Each category has its own materials, production process, price point, and customer profile:

Fine jewelry

Made with precious and semi-precious metals and gems

A higher price point

Made with excellent craftsmanship, usually not mass produced

For the luxury/wedding/special occasion customer

Fashion or costume jewelry

Usually trendy

Made of inexpensive or less expensive metals and materials (beads, wire, plated metal, plastic, synthetic gems, etc.)

A lower price point

Can be mass produced

For the everyday customer

Other/in between

This category covers everything else, from jewelry made with mid-range materials (textile, metals, semi-precious gems, wood, 3D printing, etc.) to jewelry defined as art (collectible, made to order, one of a kind) or highly skilled craftsmanship

Emphasis on design and uniqueness

Price point varies but usually mid-range

Occasion/statement, design-savvy/collector/gift-giving customer

Once you’ve narrowed down the broad category for your startup jewelry business, it’s time to carve out a niche for your products. Start by defining your ideal customer (classic, trendy, brides, socially conscious consumers, etc.) and decide whether your products are occasion specific (wedding, party, everyday, etc.). This will determine how you market them to your target audience.

Jewelry trends

Researching trends is one way to determine (and validate) your chosen direction, and it’s an important step when understanding how to start a jewelry business online. Read fashion and jewelry blogs and publications and follow influencers in the space to stay on top of trends for each upcoming season. Using Google Trends, you can also see broad global search volume for a particular term.

Alternatively, you might look into adjacent trends or consumer habits, such as the appetite for customizable experiences like engraving, or ethically sourced materials.

Somehow I felt like, just by fluke, I found a market for something new without meaning to, But it was just my taste. Nobody else was doing that, noting that shiny silver was the trend at the time.

Now, though her collections evolve with trends in the jewelry industry every year, the common thread is a recognizable look that defines her brand and secures repeat business.

Finding jewelry design inspiration

Success as a newbie in any facet of the fashion industry depends on strong aesthetic, unique design, and consistent branding. Before hiring a designer to develop branding and individual pieces, business owners should run through a few exercises to define your overall signature style.

Depending on how you like to get inspired, you may set up Pinterest boards, design your own digital mood boards, use a jewelry design mobile app, or even assemble inspiration physically on a bulletin board or in a sketchbook.

Collect images, colors, and textures from nature, architecture, fashion, or travel, and then identify themes that emerge. Never stop being inspired, I’m always drawing inspiration and collecting inspirational images, no matter where I am.

 Define your brand

Remember, brand is different than branding. Brand is your voice, mission, vision, and your brand story. It tells your potential customers how to feel about your products. Fashion purchases are often emotional, and emerging brands can win customers by connecting on a personal level, even through something as simple as a business name. Tell your story through your About page, inject yourself into your social media posts, and share the process and inspiration behind your designs.

Packaging, logo, and website design for your jewelry brand

The next part of how to start a handmade jewelry business is branding. Branding refers to the more tactical elements that represent your brand visually—logo, packaging, business cards, and your website.

Once you’ve established your products’ aesthetic, chosen a business name that resonates with your audience, and nailed your customer profile, it should be easier to identify an overall look that will define your brand. This is an essential step, even for a small business, so don’t rush it.

You don’t need to make an expensive and complicated website if you want to know how to make jewelry a successful business venture. On the low-cost end, you can set up a Shopify store with a free theme and develop the logo yourself using a free online logo maker. We also have resources to help come up with domain name ideas should you need some inspiration too.

Keep in mind that you’ll still want to reserve some of your budget for professional product photos. We’ll discuss the importance of photography for jewelry later in this post. With these tools, it’s easy to see how to start a jewelry business at home.

For larger budgets, work with a designer to translate your vision into a full branding package for your business—from the logo and website to packaging and marketing materials. Peruse the portfolios of Wed site Design Experts to find a designer whose work resonates with your tastes.

Writing a business plan for your jewelry brand

A formal business plan may not be necessary if you don’t plan to pitch your idea to investors or seek other forms of outside funding at the start. However, checking out a few business plan templates may be a good exercise to help you understand your target customer, goals, business model, costs, and growth plan. It’s also helpful as you learn how to run a jewelry business.

 Start production

Jewelry production: factory outsourced, Rather than making the jewelry with your own hands, you can have your designs manufactured by someone else. This isn’t ideal for fine, custom, or jewelry, but it can be cost-effective for fashion jewelry produced in larger quantities. There are two main options for outsourcing to wholesale providers, if you want to know how to start a jewelry business at home:

Local manufacturing


“Made local” appeal

Possibly faster/more reliable shipping

Easier to verify reputation and build relationships

More opportunity for oversight (visit to factory)


Higher cost

Less choice (fewer manufacturers, limited materials)

Possible limit in production volumes

Overseas manufacturing


Lower cost

Usually more options regarding materials and process

Ability to scale to larger volumes


Communication barriers (cultural, language, time zones)

Less oversight and control

Minimums may be high

Manufacturing and ethical standards may differ by country

Accurate sketches or 3D renderings of your designs are necessary if you’re outsourcing to a manufacturer. There are several options, depending on your skill level and budget:

Manual design tools:

1) pencils, sketch paper, jewelry design templates

2) 2D or 3D general design software: Photoshop, Illustrator, Sketchup

3) Jewelry-specific design software (best for fine jewelry): RhinoGold, MatrixGold,

4) Jewelry production: Print on demand

The most hands-off production method involves uploading your designs to a print-on-demand app. Your original designs are 3D printed or recreated in stainless steel, wood, plastic, gold, or silver and shipped directly to your customers.

Set up a jewelry business studio or workspace

If you elect to make the jewelry in-house, you’ll need a workshop space for you and your team. When setting up this space, consider the following:

Maneuverability. Consider the flow of the space, especially if the assembly has multiple steps—do you move from one station to the next in a logical sequence?

Safety. Some chemicals or tools involved in jewelry making require proper ventilation and safety precautions. Check with local laws governing use of these substances and processes.

Storage. Well-organized multi-compartment storage is essential for small parts.

A jeweler’s bench, a flex shaft, and your safety would be the most important considerations,” The flex shaft is a wonderful and versatile tool that you can use for drilling, finishing, and polishing your pieces. She also advises using a face mask and safety googles—and for those with long hair to pull it back so it doesn’t get caught.

If your production team is larger or your requirements are a little more complex—as with metal work or silversmithing workshops—consider commercial space outside of the home. If it’s out of your budget at launch, look into co-op studio space or share the costs of space and equipment with other creatives. Gillian splits her studio with two other businesses.

Space sharing also helps combat entrepreneur loneliness, something Corrine is familiar with herself. “After doing Biko full time for a while, I ended up working at a retail clothing store once a week just to not be lonely at home in my studio.

Jewelry equipment and tools

There are several online resources for how to make jewelry online, including wholesale jewelry making equipment, tools, and supplies, including precious gemstones and raw metals.

Gillian relies heavily on word of mouth when it comes to her wholesale suppliers. “Don’t be afraid to ask other designers where they find their supplies, she says.

She also attends trade shows and industry events to continue to expand her network and discover new materials. “My favorite place to source the newest stones and silver findings is the Tucson Gem and Jewelry Show, There are thousands of vendors from all over the world.

Take professional photos of your products

Don’t skimp on photograph, even if you’re on a budget. A professional photographer is skilled at making models feel comfortable and setting up complicated lighting. Other additions to your photoshoot team include stylists, makeup artists, and assistants.

Hiring models doesn’t have to break the bank. There are always people who are looking to build their book or willing to work for products, It’s not about taking advantage of people—you’re all new to the game. If you get a group together and join forces, you can create magic together.

When shooting your photos, it’s also important to offer several different views and angles of your products within these two categories:

Detail/product photos shot on a clean background minimize distraction and highlight the details and different angles of the piece. These photos can create a clutter-free, consistent look on collection pages.

Lifestyle photos shot on a model show scale on the body and suggest styling ideas to customers (often great for upselling—you can nudge customers to combine multiple pieces into one look). These shots can work on product pages or in a lookbook and are generally better for social media posts.

Looking for more ways to cut costs? Partner with complementary apparel brands to reduce photography expenses or lend your jewelry pieces to fashion editors for photoshoots in return for product photos and exposure.

Looking for more ways to cut costs? Partner with complementary apparel brands to reduce photography expenses or lend your jewelry pieces to fashion editors for photoshoots in return for product photos and exposure.

Build your online store

Now that you have your production, brand, and photography nailed down, let’s put it all together.  In a matter of hours, you can set up a functioning online store.