Making The Most of Your Jewelry Redesign Budget

What does “restyling“ mean?

Restyling involves changing some part of the existing jewelry design to be more functional, aesthetically pleasing, or wearable.  Restyling typically does not include  unmounting and remounting all of the existing gemstones or diamonds.  (Unmounting and remounting is filed under Custom Design.)
When we restyle jewelry, we are essentially changing some function, or a major aesthetic part.

EXAMPLES OF RESTYLING:
  • Adding a halo to a solitaire ring
  • Changing a large cocktail ring into a pendant
  • Dividing a bracelet to create earrings
  • Using an old wedding band as the base for a stackable ring

Why is Restyling More Cost-Effective Than Custom Jewelry?

There are additional costs involved with Custom Jewelry.  Usually, this includes costs to CAD render (computer aided design) which is time-intensive on the designer’s part.  Custom Design also involves making a brand-new mold used to cast the form of your new piece.
Right off the bat, a New Custom Design can cost a minimum of $300-400 before even casting or labor, just from design costs and new mold making.
However, with Jewelry Restyling, the cost primarily comes from the labor involved to work with your piece, remove unwanted parts, and costs of new smaller parts involved (like ring shanks, settings, prongs, etc.)
HERE’S AN EXAMPLE
The Watch Restyle:
I bought a lovely Art Deco Platinum Diamond Watch at auction.  When I received the item, I saw a big issue: the wrist size was extremely small.  Like, child-sized small.  I knew I couldn’t wear it, and the costs involved with making the watch larger would far outweigh what I paid for the item.  No sense in that!
The sides of the watch, which connected to the watch face + case, were absolutely gorgeous and in great general condition.  The links had great movement to them.  I knew they would be fantastic as matched earrings.
By adding earring posts and earring backs to the top of each link, the look was transformed.  Now, we had absolutely stunning Art Deco Diamond Earrings.
The cost of the restyle?  $150!

 

The Leake Co. Platinum Art Deco Diamond Earrings

How to Keep Your Costs Low

DESIGN WITH FLEXIBILITY
Of course, the fewer parts of the existing item we change, the lower the costs.  Costs can increase with labor and metals added.  
I encourage my clients to be flexible with the desired design;  the more we can work with and preserve the existing metal, settings, and diamonds, the less we will need to add / unmount / remount.  Even a simple addition like a bail to transform a cluster ring into a pendant can be a relatively inexpensive and easy restyle.  However, unmounting all of those diamonds, melting and recasting the metal into a new design, and resetting the stones would be quite expensive.
In another avenue, we can utilize existing designs from our Design Library to avoid new design and mold costs.  These designs have existing molds and basic renderings, so we don’t need to make new ones as long as your stones match the needed sizes!
It’s an easy solution to match your calibrated diamonds & gemstones to pre-existing Design Library designs, which mean that we only have to add a few stones to finish out the look, involve labor to set the stones, and the metal.

 

The Original:
Our Client didn’t like the woven shank, but loved the cluster top.

The Restyle:
We simply removed the old shank, ordered a new 14k Yellow Gold shank, hand-shaped and installed the new shank, and finished the piece.  It would have cost 2x to remove and reset all of the diamonds into something else.  Project Cost: $999


Sarah Martin Rowe, G.G.

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