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7 Reasons to Support Local Jewelry Designers and Small Businesses

Written by Anna Currell
April 4, 2023

When you’re on the hunt for new jewelry, one of the first decisions to make is where to shop. With the huge number of online stores and major brick-and-mortar retailers to choose from, where should you begin? Try supporting local jewelry designers or small businesses as a starting point. Shopping with the talented artists and creators in your area usually means a personalized shopping experience, the opportunity to connect with people in your community, and access to some incredible and unique jewelry. Here are seven reasons to support local jewelry designers and small businesses: 

#1: Find One-of-a-Kind Designs

When you shop at a large retailer or online store, you’re going to find pieces that are mass produced. That means it’s likely lots of other people will be wearing the same jewelry. But local jewelry designers and independent jewelry businesses often offer handcrafted and truly unique pieces that you can’t find anywhere else. Some designers will even personalize a special piece just for you, making it really one of a kind. 

#2: Support the Local Economy

When you support local jewelry designers and small businesses, you’re helping to strengthen your community’s economy. Your purchases can help to create jobs, support families, and bolstering the local community. Not only do you get to find jewelry that looks good, but it will also make you feel good. Your purchases are making a meaningful contribution to your community — instead of giving your money to big corporations, you’re making an impact in your own neighborhood.  

#3: Support Sustainable Practices 

Lots of independent jewelry designers and businesses make an effort to use sustainable and environmentally friendly materials and production methods. When you make a purchase from a sustainable designer, you’re helping to reduce the environmental impact of the jewelry industry. Find a piece you love and give a little back to the planet! In addition to being great for the environment, many alternative materials, like lab-created diamonds or recycled metals, are much more affordable.

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#4: Get Exceptional Quality 

You can also expect high-quality materials and high-quality craftsmanship from independent and local jewelry designers. They often create smaller quantities of their pieces so they won’t be skimping on material costs to spread their budgets across huge collections, and since they’re not mass producing jewelry, they can take their time and put care into each item they create. 

#5: Make Personal Connections and Wear Meaningful Pieces

When you buy from local jewelry designers, you can more easily develop a personal connection with the artist or business owner. Getting to chat with the designer gives you context for the pieces you love — not only can they tell you how they make their pieces, what inspires them, and where they get their materials, but you can also develop a meaningful connection with them, which makes your pieces all the more special. These connections are part of the experience when you attend a craft fair or visit a local shop, and artists appreciate face time with customers just as much as the other way around. Each time you wear your piece you can think of the person who created it, which doesn’t always happen with mass-produced retail designs. 

#6: Support Creativity and Innovation

By supporting local jewelry artists and small businesses, you can help to foster creativity and innovation in the jewelry industry. These artists often push the boundaries of traditional jewelry design and offer new and exciting styles and trends, differentiating themselves from the big retail chains that are beholden to mainstream fashion trends. When you support out-of-the-box thinkers and artists who are inventing new ways to create jewelry, you contribute to building a market for the new, innovative designs that you like to wear. 

#7: Get Incredible Customer Service

When you shop from a local designer, you can expect an exceptional customer service experience. Small business owners and artists really value each of their customers since they’re interacting with you at every step of the process; taking orders, creating the design, packing it up, and mailing it to you. They are likely to take the time to speak with you and cater to your specific needs, and if you have a question, you know you’ll get directly to the expert with all the answers you need. Just remember to be patient; you’re probably dealing with a one-person show!

Shopping local is a great way to find jewelry pieces you love while supporting independent artists and creators. Once you purchase your designs, be sure to take great care of them. Especially when pieces are special, unique, and handcrafted, you’ll want to be extra attentive to ensure their longevity. Use a soft cloth to gently wipe down your jewelry at the end of each wear, and get a professional cleaning every six months to keep them in top-notch shape.

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