Jewelry Design Classes

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What is Jewelry Design?

Jewelry design and crafts is the area of study and employment that deals with the design and creation of jewelry through the use of gems and metals in order to achieve appealing designs. Individuals in this field may create their own designs or work with customers to bring to life their desired design, or elements of design, in order to produce the given piece of jewelry. Though individuals may enter this field without having a previous education, individuals who have completed a program are generally considered more desirable hires.

Educational Requirements for Jewelry Designers

Individuals who pursue a program through a vocational school or community college in this field will typically enter a program that last between six months and one year. The education received will vary by program, and can include courses in computer aided design (CAD), which is becoming common place in the design and creation of jewelry. Higher level degrees are available in design, typically up to the master degree level, and are generally awarded as a fine arts degree.

A curriculum may include:

  • Gemology
  • Design
  • Metal Working
  • CAD
  • History of Jewelry

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Employment Opportunities in Jewelry Design

Individuals will typically pursue apprenticeship under a professional, working alongside seasoned designers and manufacturers as part of their on the job training. Many individuals in this field work alone as specialists and offer their products through shows, online sales, or to select clients. Others may work in design firms, working to produce designs yearly and of varying quality for the purposes of sale. The advent of new technologies has made the process of design and manufacture easier over the years, allowing for more intricate and varied pieces. Individuals in this field should also have an understanding of ratings of gem and precious metals and how to gauge and identify such products.

Job Growth, Salary and Related Design Fields

Job growth in this field is expected to decrease over the next decade due to outsourced manufacturing and easier design methodologies and technologies. The decline will hit lower skilled labor the most, due to the removal of need regarding such positions. Personal designers, firms and others will still continue to employ professionals, particularly those with excellent design skills and technical acumen. The average salary for an individual in this field is approximately $38,200 annually, but may vary greatly based on a number of factors that include skill, notoriety, and location.

Top 5 Paying States for Jewelers

  1. New Jersey        $54,770
  2. Pennsylvania    $53,960
  3. Arkansas            $53,850
  4. Connecticut       $50,680
  5. New York           $49,510

Top Employers for a Jeweler

  • Jewelry, Luggage, and Leather Stores
  • Manufacturing Companies
  • Durable Goods Wholesalers
  • Household Goods Repair and Maintenance Stores
  • Specialized Design Services

Individuals in this field may also be interested in ceramic arts, fine studio arts, machining, industrial design, or art history.  Additionally, graduates may find benefit it becoming members of associations such as the Jewelers of American (JA) or the Jewelry Design Professionals Network (JDPN).   Organizations of this caliber provide research, tools, and professional networking opportunities outside academia that may prove beneficial to graduates.

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Career Summary: Jewelry design Major




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