Rejecting the draft

June 9th 2012

My design process involves digitally making the item of jewellery first. Next if required I make a silver draft. After both those steps have been approved by my customer I then make the piece of jewellery. In this post I discuss what happens when the silver draft gets rejected.

After I design a piece of jewellery I very often make a draft out of silver to confirm the design with the customer before making the actual piece. This process allows the customer to do the following before giving the final approval to the design:

  • the customer can touch, wear and feel the piece
  • alterations can be made as needed
  • for rings the finger size can be confirmed exactly

Some customers can visualise a piece of jewellery from a photo but others cannot and the drafts are perfect for those customers. Sometimes the drafts are exactly what the customer desires and other times the design needs to be refined.

In a very few cases I discover with my customer that the design we had been working on is not to their liking at all. At this point we go back to the start of the design process and begin again. The ring pictured to the right is a silver draft of a design supplied to me by some customers. The ring turning out exactly how they had planned but once they put the draft on their finger they decided they no longer liked the design.

As I said this does not happen very often but you might be asking how I can afford to use this process? The truth is I cannot afford not to!

Unlike most other jewellers I do not advertise. My customers are my advertising and you can imagine what sort of advertising they would do for me if they are unhappy. Rather than spend money on high exposure rents and advertising I invest in my customers through the draft process that ensures what I make for them they will love.

The reason I am mentioning this is that recently a draft I made was rejected, the one pictured above. Jacqui and Kim had found that design elsewhere and had been shopping around at jewellers for prices to make it for them. They were to be commitment rings so two were needed and from a detailed sketch of the design they had made I was able to quote.

In the end it came down to quotes from myself and another jeweller. The other jeweller however does not do drafts before making the actual piece and for Kim and Jacqui it turned out that they would have been stuck with rings that they did not like if they had not chosen to go through my design, draft and then make process.

After coming in to try on the silver drafts they realised that they did not like the design. We started again and the end result is the ring pictured below and two very happy customers. The rings were made in 18ct palladium white gold with one side polished and the other matte finished. The 3 hammer set diamonds were G colour and Vs1 clarity. The wave ridge pattern is repeated on the top and bottom of the ring and when viewed off the finger and directly from above forms the infinity symbol.

Info, DesignDavid Taylor