The field of jewelery has four main facets. All have their benefits financially. The first is making jewelry. These jewelers mold precious metals and minerals into everything from bracelets and wedding rings, to broaches and necklaces. A person working in jewelry design can expect to make between $30,000 to $40,000 a year or more depending on where they work and who they work for.
Selling jewelry is by far the most lucrative area of the jewelry business. This side of the career can can include buying, selling, and estimating the value of precious and semi-precious jewelry. The basic salesperson within a jewelry store can make between $20,000 and $30,000 in salary and commission, while the owner of a jewelry store, even a small one, can make a six-digit salary.
Jewelry repair can also be a great career choice. Working repair includes resizing, setting, re-setting and even some aspects of jewelry design. The salary of someone with a career in jewelry repair can vary dependent on how many client pieces they are able to work on in a year. Some of these careers involve working for major chain stores, but small businesses working with several jewelry stores at once are becoming more common. In 2012, job website Indeed reported an average salary of $26,000 for jewelry repair persons.
The final aspect that a jeweler may decide to pursue as a career is appraisal. Appraisal is the process of being able to view and test pieces of jewelry to determine their value. Few work as appraisers alone. An appraiser may work in a pawn shop, jewelry store or anywhere else where jewelry is bought or sold. Many owners and sales floor employees of jewelry stores will also specialize in jewelry appraisal. Since few only work as appraisers, their salary varies depending on where the jeweler works and the other position that they hold within their workplace. According to Indeed, the average jewelry appraiser commanded a salary of $32,000 as of 2014.
As with any career, being a jeweler comes with some risk. Jewelry stores are at higher risk than most retail stores for theft or robbery. Many jewelry stores now have hired armed security and high-tech alarm systems for protection.