How to Find the Perfect Supplier of Jewelry Making Supplies Online

Word of mouth is a good place to start. If someone who has the same interests in jewellery making has recommended a company to you, then their Internet website is a good place to begin your investigation. This will give you an idea of the kind of equipment they supply, the range of products and their prices. You can back that research up with your own by checking out magazines like ‘Bead and Button’ and other hobbyist publications. They often carry recommendations for suppliers and their opinion is well respected.

Online searches will produce thousands of potential suppliers, so you can narrow the field down by choosing companies that carry supplies specifically for your field of jewellery making. A specialist enamel supplier will not carry bead-making supplies, and vice versa. In the early stages, you are probably best advised to look for a company that sells generic supplies if you are in the process of building up your basic equipment. Also remember that many of the listings you see on the Internet may not be in your geographic area, so you may initially want to narrow your field down still further by specifying suppliers in the UK.

The Bead Shop (based in London) is one of the most well known and highly regarded suppliers of jewellery making supplies. They sell both wholesale and retail, meaning that you can save money if there is a particular product that you use more of. Like all jewellery making supplies, they carry a range of tools as well as beads, findings and other equipment, but do focus more on the beadcraft side of jewellery making.

Kernowcraft in Cornwall are also a long-established supplier, specialising in gemstones, both precious and semi-precious, as well as tools and equipment. Because of the very nature of gemstones, quality can vary, but Kernowcraft have turned that into an advantage, rather than a disadvantage. By offering a range of gems of varying quality, it gives the shopper a greater opportunity to begin using gemstones in jewellery making at entry-level prices. They sell a slightly more specialised range of tools than The Bead Shop, and have an excellent reputation with plenty of loyal customers.

Cookson Gold is one of the best known suppliers in the industry. Their reputation encompasses not only the hobbyist market, but professional jewellers and the jewellery trade as well, and as such the tools and equipment they supply are of professional quality. They have a particularly good range of precious metal clay equipment and precious metal supplies, all hallmarked and quality assured. If the trade trusts them, then it’s safe to assume that the hobbyist can too. Cookson are an international company, with bases in the UK, the US and Europe, and have worked with the US Mint, again giving the company provenance with some of the most demanding customers in the world.

It is this provenance that you are looking for when choosing a supplier. Shop around for the best prices – don’t feel that you have to use only one supplier for all your needs. Look for recommendations, both amongst like-minded friends and the trade press. Consider if you require a specialist supplier or a more general jewellery making supplies provider. And if you’re shopping online, always make sure that the supplier has a secure site (indicated by the inclusion of an s in the url address e.g. https://) to protect your details. If a supplier does not have a secure shopping site area, then it may be wiser to try somewhere else.

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About the Author

Jayne Sterling - Jeweller - Has used the companies mentioned in the article for jewellery making supplies including gold and silver wire, jewellery tools, findings, precious metal clay and precious metal sheet - gold, silver, platinum and palladium plus technical information for jewellers, jobbers, designer, craftsmen, artisans and students.