Why buy from the mass produced guy when you can customize?

No doubt about it. Commercial jewelry manufacturers create some pretty awesome designs. Whether costume or fine, pieces purchased from your local shop or online from one of the “big box” retailers can be fashionable, beautiful, and interesting.
Rather than buying from a retailer, however, some try to create a custom piece as a do-it-yourself project. Websites such as Gemkitty, Blue Nile or Gemvara exist to offer a helping hand. But is a truly special gift one that you created in your basement? And, the end result is still something created from a template that thousands of others have used.

The more thoughtful and creative among us can choose to work together with an
independent designer. Creating that one-of-a-kind piece can strike just the right mood with that special person. The independent designer, a skilled craftsman in a time of mass production and third-world imports, can help make that dream come true.Or, perusing the offerings of the designer-craftsman, you can often find a piece that works as it is. Then, you can buy feeling confident that the necklace, ring or bracelet that you are presenting to your spouse, friend, or even to yourself, won't be seen anywhere else.

Customized jewelry, whether gem quality or upscale costume, is the opportunity to express yourself in today's cookie cutter world.