When a Customer Expects You to Copy a Jewelry Design

by Rena Klingenberg.

When a Customer Expects You to Copy a Jewelry Design, by Rena Klingenberg, Jewelry Making Journal

Have you ever had someone ask you to make an exact copy of a piece of jewelry that was designed by someone else?

Several years ago, a friend who had been on vacation asked me to make a mother’s bracelet just like one she had seen on her trip – in an artist’s booth at a show.

My friend said, “I could have just bought the bracelet from that artist, but I’d rather give you the business, so I wondered if you could make me one just like it.”

She drew a sketch of the bracelet design, and it was something I could have figured out how to make.

But I didn’t feel ethical about not only copying another artist’s design, but also stealing that artist’s sale.

I thought about how I would feel if someone fell in love with a piece of my jewelry – but asked another jewelry artist to copy the piece instead of buying it from me.

So I had to tell my friend that I couldn’t make this mother’s bracelet for her, even though I appreciated her thoughtfulness in wanting me to have her business for it.

I offered to design a different mother’s bracelet for her.

But I was glad to hear from my friend that she decided to get in touch with the original artist and order the bracelet from her after all.

Have you been asked to copy a piece of jewelry?

How did you (or how would you) handle that request?

Rena Klingenberg

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