what makes jewelry expensive? Jewelry, especially fine jewelry, is often quite expensive, which means that although we may all be out here looking for the best kinds of jewelry to accessorize with, most of us cannot afford the jewelry. But why is jewelry very expensive?
What is considered expensive jewelry?
Not all jewelry is expensive and what is considered expensive jewelry is fine jewelry.
Generally, exquisite and beautiful jewelry is integral to human culture because such pieces not only make us look great, we also feel so good in them.
It is this level of attraction from jewelry that makes us hunt for fine jewelry.
But then, fine jewelry is expensive, which sends most people to opt for the inexpensive pieces of jewelry over the expensive pieces.
But what exactly is considered expensive jewelry, or rather, is there a rule that defines expensive and inexpensive jewelry?
Well, yes. There are rules that define expensive and inexpensive jewelry, and when it comes to jewelry, you always get what you pay for because some pieces cost more than others for specific reasons.
The reasons behind the high cost associated with some types of jewelry and not others boil down to craftsmanship, quality/ quality of the metal used, and the quality/ quantity of the gems or diamonds used.
In terms of the quality of metals and gems, it’s worth noting that some of the precious metals used for some kinds of jewelry are inherently more valuable than others, which means that such pieces will cost more.
In cases of materials with high inherent value, the size might be something that drives down the cost; for example, even the smallest diamond stone will cost more than a large topaz. On the other hand, platinum jewelry may cost more than white gold.
But these aren’t the only factors that affect the cost of jewelry. Handmade jewelry, for example, costs more than mass-produced pieces of jewelry because of the added value that comes from the high level of workmanship applied to the jewelry. This line of thought applies to designer pieces of jewelry too, and the unique designer pieces cost a lot because you pay for the art and the brand name.
The other factor that comes into play when it comes to the cost of jewelry is the type of materials used – natural or artificial/ synthetic materials. The market today is filled with synthetic stones that have undergone synthetic treatment to look like the natural pieces of jewelry, but at much less than the natural gemstone jewelry.
So, with all these factors under consideration, what you are paying for when it comes to expensive jewelry will vary. However, most of the expensive jewelry includes pieces made of gold, palladium, platinum, and silver.
But don’t stop there because what’s considered expensive jewelry, even with these metals, depends on the crafting of the metals.
Plain jewelry made of any of these precious metals costs significantly less than the same metal jewelry crafted with the best natural stones and the best prongs and settings. So, in the case of a gold diamond ring, the amount you pay for the piece will depend on the cut, clarity, color, and carat weight, as well as the karats of the gold used.
Therefore, it would be safe to note that expensive jewelry is pretty much the finest quality jewelry, while inexpensive jewelry falls under the costume jewelry category, often made of lower-quality materials.
Just remember that there are cases where the expensive jewelry you buy is only expensive because of the brand name.
Why is jewelry so expensive?
The main reason why jewelry is very pricey has to do with human nature and the fact that we want the jewelry to be expensive.
So, although you could buy cheap jewelry, and maybe you do, most people look for the thrill that comes with wearing something expensive – something they and others know to be expensive.
People also buy expensive jewelry because of an inherent human need to show off. For example, some people will want to buy diamond jewelry that looks expensive, even if it’s not that valuable.
2.Demand and Supply
Tying to the point above on humans opting for the more expensive pieces, the laws of demand and supply also come into play, but not in the way you are thinking.
Generally, the pricing of all things around us is based on demand/supply. But when it comes to jewelry, most people avoid the cheaper amethysts, even though they are available in the loveliest of colors and are quite affordable.
Instead, most people will choose the emeralds because, albeit at a higher price, because emeralds are rare, hence more desirable.
At the core of every logical human, it is clear that the best jewelry is the piece that comes off as a true piece of art, something made in a way and with stones and metals that express something meaningful rather than pieces made of gold and stones, soldered without much thought.
Unfortunately, most people won’t pay for artistic pieces, even if they cost less.
3.Belief in Designer Jewelry
Most people will opt for designer pieces of jewelry, whether engagement rings or cocktail rings, but the sad bit is that most of the expensive designer jewelry one buys is not worth the cost, and you only pay the high price tag because of the brand name.
The sad bit is that in as much as you pay a lot for the brand name, the branded piece may not be any better than a non-brand piece of jewelry despite being made of the same metals and stones.
This often happens because of the popularity of the brand, all thanks to the money the brand puts in advertising on different websites and magazines, which means that the high cost of the jewelry is pretty much the cost that covers the advertising, rather than the value obtained from wearing the branded jewelry.
What all that means is that you are only paying for the brand name, and the jewelry designs aren’t special in any way.
Some designer jewelry brands are inexpensive, though, meaning that before you opt for the expensive designer ring with precision-cut accents, look at what other designers are offering and other non-designer ieces in jewelry stores.
It’s worth noting that some jewelry is expensive by virtue of the time, effort, and the quality of materials that are used for that piece of jewelry.
Pieces that show off exquisite craftsmanship and the use of genuine, high-quality, natural, and precious materials will naturally cost more than the ones made of cheaper, maybe even synthetic/fake materials.
Is expensive Jewelry Really Worth the Money?
Well, it depends. There are many cases where expensive jewelry is worth the high price tag.
Often, a piece of jewelry will be worth the money charged if the jeweler discloses the details of the materials used to make the jewelry, for example, high-quality precious metals and natural pearls, gemstones, or diamonds; not the manufactured pieces.
The jewelry is also worth it if it’s handmade or carefully crafted – such pieces are time-consuming, and they require a high skill level.
Note that the jewelers that charge a lot for their pieces often make use of high-quality materials worth the high cost.
The best jewelry is expensive because it’s made of high-quality, durable, unique, and valuable materials and gemstones. Such pieces last, and they are worth the price tag.
But if you don’t want to spend a lot of money, you’d opt for costume/ fashion jewelry made of lower-quality materials – but they don’t last long.
Keep in mind that because of the allure of high-quality jewelry pieces, the promise of class and longevity, we will always spend more money on expensive jewelry. It won’t always make sense, but we’ll do it.
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Stephanie is a jewelry lover when she was a teenager. Her major was fashion design when she was in college. She is a jewelry designer at SOQ Jewelry and other design companies. Now she is also a writer for our website. She writes a lot of designs&brands posts with very actionable tips.