Are you looking to purchase Australian made jewellery that will suit your sense of style? Do you want to find something that will be much more unique compared to the boring necklaces, earrings and rings you see everywhere? Are you looking for authentic and quality jewellery designs?
We're here to help you learn what to look for when shopping for Australian jewellery created by independent jewellery designers. Doing so can help you find gorgeous jewellery that will make heads turn. With the right approach you'll find beautiful pieces that are unique, fit your budget and are great quality at the same time. As for gift shopping? You'll be a pro!
Ready to learn more? Read on for an in-depth guide about what to look for when you shop for unique Australian jewellery.
1. Is it made in Australia?
We're big fans of shopping locally. Wearing jewellery that was created with love by an independent jewellery designer in Australia will give you a warm and fuzzy feeling. It will also support local designers and makers in your own community - real people just like you, rather than faceless corporations.
Take the time to research the companies and jewellery makers that you are considering purchasing from. What is their origin story? What motivates them to create the jewellery that they sell? What is their connection to Australia? Do they actually design and/or make the jewellery they sell?
If you really want to support local designers, find out where a seller's products are created. You'll find that bigger name brands simply re-sell ready made jewellery that was entirely designed and made by another business in another country, sometimes in pretty poor conditions.
Here at Simone Walsh Jewellery we create our unique designs in-house. Simone does all of the design work for our Australian jewellery pieces. We have components made for us by our partners, but all to Simone's specifications. The components are generally then worked further and assembled in our South Australian workshop ready to send to our lovely customers in Australia and around the world. Learn more about how we work.
What's even better is that we create eco-friendly jewellery. We certainly don't claim to be perfect, but we do everything in our power to ensure our pieces are created with integrity and protect the beautiful ecosystem that we live in.
2. Do they have unique designs?
Simple, classic jewellery pieces that you see everywhere and have been around forever certainly have their place. As do some of the latest trends that everyone seems to be wearing. But that's no reason to be boring or to only wear those types of jewellery designs.
Thankfully, there are other options out there, particularly if you look at independent jewellery designers who create their own products with their own unique design ideas.
When you shop with Simone Walsh Jewellery, you'll be buying our original designs, aside from a small number of very simple wardrobe basics we carry (ball stud earrings and endless hoops, for example). We love incorporating different materials, shapes, and styles to create unique pieces and Simone always designs with creative women in mind (she's one herself, after all!).
Shopping small with an independent design business like ours means you'll be able to put on a piece jewellery knowing that you have something unique and that your friends won't all be wearing the exact same design.
For example, imagine wearing our stars and apatite beaded necklace (pictured) to a special occasion. The beautiful blend of vivid blue gemstones and sterling silver is sure to catch people's eyes. It's an entirely different design that you won't typically find on the shelves of a big-name jeweller - and we think that's a good thing!
3. Does the jewellery have meaning?
Learn more about choosing and wearing jewellery with our handy articles.
Don't get us wrong, aesthetics will always play a huge part in the jewellery that you wear or buy as gifts for others. You're always going to want to choose pieces that look great, given that looking good is perhaps the biggest reason people wear jewellery.
That said, looks aren't everything. If you only purchase jewellery which has no meaning or intent behind it then your jewellery collection will be somewhat one-dimensional. Also if you're shopping for gifts, then meaningful jewellery will have much more of an impact.
We believe that the jewellery we design can be invested with meaning: it has a lot to do with how you perceive it or the intention behind it if it was a gift. For example, the stars and apatite beaded necklace we mentioned earlier has significant depth to it. The sterling silver stars are a symbol with wishes for protection from negativity and promoting positive vibes. Just like a wishing star, the necklace is meant to bring you good luck.
When looking for jewellery in Australia, make sure to look into the intent and inspiration behind at least some of the piece(s) that you're purchasing. It will mean all the more to you when you wear them or gift them to someone special.
4. Make sure it's authentic
Unfortunately, there are a lot of jewellery pieces out there that aren't made of the material that they appear to be. Costume jewellery has its place, but be sure that you're not expecting something which is better quality than it really is.
Authenticity is an important factor as it ensures that the piece will be durable and have the sparkle and colour that you're looking for. How can you ensure authenticity? Primarily by purchasing from a trusted source.
If you're a first time customer, take a closer look at the jewellery business you're looking to buy from. Are they up front about where they are based? How long have they been in business? What are their reviews like? Do they clearly state the specific materials they use in each of their pieces? Can you make a return for any reason if you're not happy? Are their prices too good to be true (a major red flag)? All of these things will give you an idea of how trustworthy the business is.
We've been in business for over 25 years and take a lot of pride in the quality of our collection. We create jewellery with real sterling silver, gold and gemstones. We always clearly list the materials our jewellery is made from on our product pages and we have a lot of articles and even a jewellery glossary to help you be better informed about what you buy. Here are some handy links:
Although it isn't a legal requirement in Australia, most of our pieces have a purity stamp or hallmark confirming what they are made from, particularly for solid gold and sterling silver jewellery.
5. Do they offer great customer service?
Make sure that you're purchasing from an Australian jewellery business that is known for good customer service. That way, if any problems arise you can be sure you'll be taken care of.
You can do this by finding jewellers that have been in the business a long time. You can also read reviews about the jeweller that you're considering and see what other customers say about their customer support.
We also recommend you take time to look into their policies. How easy is it to make a return? Will they look after you if your order goes missing in the post? What happens if they make a mistake with your order? Do they provide information about how to care for your jewellery? Are they easy enough to contact if there's an issue? All of these things will give you a good idea of how good the store's customer service is likely to be.
At Simone Walsh Jewellery we really do take pride in truly excellent customer service. We're small enough that we can take personalised care of our customers and we work hard to try to ensure that our customers are happy.
Invest in Australian jewellery today
Now that you've read an in-depth guide on the things you should look for when shopping for Australian jewellery, be sure to use it to your advantage. Go forth and shop local and small!