Updating Old Jewelry for Friends and Colleagues

by Maria Hansford.
(Ontario, Canada)

Updating Old Jewelry for Friends and Colleagues, by Maria Hansford

Since I was a little girl in my native country, Italy, I always loved art and crafting. Crayons, buttons, old jewelry, a piece of glass or a shell found at the beach would sparkle my imagination and I could see in my mind a new creation!

Beading and jewelry making have fulfilled my need to create beautiful things, to play with colors and shapes!

I always wear my jewelry at work. My co-workers are always interested in seeing my new necklaces, earrings, pendants etc.

A couple of years ago one of them asked me this question: “I have some old necklaces at home – could you rearrange the beads and make something new for me?”

I like new challenges and try new things, so I said: “Why not?! Bring me what you have!”.

I did not know that day that I had found a new way to learn how to please my customers, a new way to know what different people like.

Before rearranging a piece (or combining a few pieces together) I always talk with the customer to find out what are her expectations about her new jewelry.

These conversations are so important: I have learnt so much about color preferences, favourite designs, sometimes while talking I even get new ideas and inspirations!

You may think that this jewelry up-dating is time consuming and not financially rewarding but – believe me – even though it is something that I do only occasionally it is a great learning experience!

Pretty in red

Pretty in red

Maria Hansford
The Treasure Chest


Neat way to repurpose jewelry!
by: Rena

A great idea for a service to offer, Maria!

Just like clothes and shoes that sit unworn in our closets for various reasons, most people have jewelry that’s not the right size, style or fit.

But with a bit of magic from a caring jewelry artist, these pieces are reborn into a new life!

Thank you so much for sharing this neat side of your jewelry business, Maria!

Great Idea
by: Rita J

What a great idea and I’m really curious how you charge for a service like this.

pricing your updating job
by: Maria Hansford

Hi Rita!
It is a bit like pricing your jewelry: the time you spent, the price of the new findings and beads added to the old ones, etc.
I charge from 5$CAN for a pair of earrings to 10 -20$CAN for a necklace. Of course if I add sterling silver findings or expensive beads I add the cost I paid for them.
Hope this is helpful!

Repurposed Jewelry
by: Rachel

I did something similar a while back and it was a LOT of fun to do.


by: minnie




Giving Old Jewelry New Life
by: Tricia – Bead Booty

I love when my friends ask me to “remake” a pair of earrings or a bracelet or a necklace. There’s great personal satisfaction in giving them the piece of jewelry they really want!

Giving old jewelry a new life
by: Holly

After a recent jewelry show at a business, I received six requests to update old jewelry. One of these requests was challenging, but I learned from all of them. Most importantly however, each customer was absolutely thrilled to be able to wear their “new” jewelry. In return, it generated alot of interest from others as well as an invite to return to do another show!

The “Yeah, But…”
by: Anonymous

You apparently acquired colleagues from a different world than I did. Mine all want me to repair, recycle, refurbish, their old stuff for NOTHING. As soon as I mention rates, fees, etc., ah well, they’re not interested anymore. Not even when my prices are insultingly low. Or, if I’m naive enough to do it first on the pay-me-later system, I never see the $. Even my best friend brought me a whole box of old, cheap thrift-store earrings missing all kinds of parts and pieces and ordered, “Here, fix these, will you?” Of course, she wanted me to do all that work for free. Instead, I offered to give her a lesson in making simple loops, jump rings, and said, “Let me know if I can teach you anything else,” which she grudgingly accepted, but she never touched all that broken mass at all. I know I sound cynical, but I also believe that if you don’t value your own work, no one else will, either.

repurposing old jewelry
by: Holly

I hear what you’re saying and that is definitely frustrating. For me, it pretty much started when I wore one of my favorite pieces-a necklace I made using components from my Grandmother’s old costume jewelry box that I have had since a little girl. It is such a conversation piece and generated alot of interest. As far as pricing, I pretty much charge my regular prices and then will discount it to accomodate components that were theirs. I think the nostalgia part of it makes the cost worth it.
Good luck, Holly

Updating jewelry
by: Patt “visionseeker”

I have also found that there are many people that have jewelry that has been “left” to them by friends/family that have “passed on”.
Often times, this particular piece is not “in style” or not their “their style”. They bring their jewelry to me and I restring the item adding or deleting beads or findings to their liking.
This serves a three-fold purpose. You are re-cycling a jewelry item, the person is able to wear a part of their loved one close to them (without looking outdated) and they have a “new piece” of jewelry.

Vintange reinvented
by: Maria Hansford

Another good result from this experience is that i now look for vintage pieces, unique and good quality ones, that I often use as focal parts for a new line of my jewelry, the Vintage Reviseted one. These are now my best selling pieces!

Maria Hansford
The Treasure Chest

Updating Old Jewelery Rules!
by: Here Today Beadworks

If I can take a favorite piece, maybe broken, maybe dated, and make it into useable jewelery again, it gives me such a great sense of satisfaction. Everyone I have been able to do this for has been both very grateful and willing to pay for it. I have even added it as a regular item on my etsy shop – a simple restring your necklace version and a more complicated remake these beads version. I am new to etsy, and have not had any online sales of this service yet, but have done alot of them for people I know or who have seen me at local farmer’s markets. Hope you have better sucess with it in the future 🙂

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