Frequently Asked Questions
you’ve got questions, we’ve got answers
What services do you offer?
Custom Jewelry- Whether you'd like to reuse your gemstones and/or metal or you'd rather design a piece from scratch, our amazing team of designers will help you envision a beautiful piece of jewelry exactly the way you want it, and our goldsmiths will make it a reality
Jewelry Repair Services-
• ring sizing
• re-tipping prongs
• rebuilding prongs
• re-shank ring
• arthritic shanks
• sizing pillows
• solder rings together/take them apart
• solder cracks
• chain solders
• clasp repair and replacement
• gemstone setting and replacement
• pearl and bead stringing
• re-pin bracelets
• colored stone cutting/repair
• diamond cutting/repair
• and more!
Clean and Check - We offer free polishing, cleaning and inspection of your jewelry, regardless of where it was purchased. Recommended clean and check interval: every 6 months.
Hand Engraving- decorative embellishments, monograms, initials, even pictorial representations
Jewelry Appraisals - We have two CGAs (certified gemologist appraiser) on staff to perform several types of appraisals. You will receive an official appraisal document complete with a photograph of your item and detailed descriptions of the primary gemstone, accent gemstones and mounting. We have an AGS (American Gem Society) accredited gem laboratory
Diamond and colored gemstone re-cutting and polishing
**We do not work on watches**
Do you work on watches?
No, we do not do any work on watches including batteries.
What are your turnaround times?
Custom Jewelry – 6 to 8 weeks (sometimes we can accommodate shorter deadlines)
Repairs – 2 to 3 weeks (sometimes we can accommodate shorter deadlines)
Clean and Check – a few minutes while you wait
Hand Engraving – 1 to 2 weeks
Appraisals - 7 to 10 days (sometimes we can accommodate shorter deadlines)
Diamond and colored gemstone re-cutting and polishing – each case is different, an estimated time will be given at drop-off.
Is your jewelry ethically sourced?
Yes! We recycle metals in house, encourage our clients to recycle their metals and any new metal we buy is recycled.
We also encourage the re-setting of existing gems, often they have personal meaning and history and that makes the finished jewelry that much more special. When new gems are desired, we carefully choose suppliers with ethical standards that match our own. The Kimberley Process insures that our diamonds are conflict free, plus we offer Canadian diamonds and a range of diamond alternatives.
We are proud members of the AGS (American Gem Society), AGTA (American Gem Trade Association) and the JVC (Jewelers Vigilance Committee), all of which require the highest standards of ethical practices for membership.
Read more about our ethical practices…
What are your e-commerce (online purchase) policies?
We offer free insured 2nd day shipping, plus free return shipping. We gladly accept returns for original condition, unworn items with a full refund to the original payment or store credit within 15 days of delivery receipt. The only exceptions are items marked “Sale,” “Vintage,” “Consignment,” items purchased at a discount including promo codes and items that are specifically marked in their listing as non returnable, such as the Durham skyline pendant because it is made to order and a portion of the proceeds goes to charity.
• All Items are sanitized before shipping.
We can not guarantee on-time delivery due to carrier delays beyond our control!
Orders placed before 12:00 pm EST Tuesday - Friday will be shipped on the day you purchase. Orders placed after 12:00 pm EST, or on non-business days (Saturday, Sunday, Monday and holidays), will be shipped on the next business day. Free 2nd day shipping is standard with all orders, however expedited shipping will incur additional charges. Please email firstname.lastname@example.org, or call 919-286-2990, to arrange for expedited shipping. Or choose in-store pickup!
Our online inventory is updated twice daily, but in the unlikely event that an item is sold that you have purchased online, we will contact you and present you with options ranging from a refund to having a similar piece custom made for you.
Are your prices competitive?
• Our prices are based on materials and labor. Materials include things like precious metals, gemstones, clasps, etc. and the labor is based on the hands-on time that it takes to make the jewelry.
• Each piece that we create is made in house by our team which consists of designer/sales staff, designer/goldsmiths, gemologists and administrative staff. In spite of the fact that our jewelry is hand made in the USA one piece at a time, our prices are comparable to jewelry of similar quality found in other stores.
Do you buy jewelry?
We buy metal.
• We buy gold and platinum, plus some diamonds. Bring us your broken or unwanted jewelry and we'll give you a recycle value based on the purity and weight. We can write you a check or offer you even more if you want to trade it toward a purchase or service.
• While we don’t buy colored gems, you may want to use them in a new piece of jewelry made just for you!
Do you have all the items in stock that are shown on your website?
• All of the items that are shown on the "Shop" pages are available unless they are marked sold or have sold in our physical location before our site has been updated. Our online inventory is updated twice daily, but in the unlikely event that an item is sold that you have purchased online, we will contact you and present you with options ranging from a refund to having a similar piece custom made for you.
We also have the archival photo galleries to demonstrate the wide range of jewelry we've made in our 40+ years.
• If you see something you like in an archive gallery or a shop item that has sold, we can custom make something like it just for you!
Do you have a warranty?
Yes! We stake our reputation on every piece of jewelry we create. Here's the official warranty:
Statement of Warranty - Thank you for choosing Jewelsmith. Our mission is to create durable, high quality, handcrafted jewelry. Components, mechanisms and gemstones will require attention over time. The following paragraphs detail our official warranty.
Our Promise - We take pride in our work and guarantee its quality. In the unlikely event that your jewelry breaks due to a manufacturing defect or an error in our workmanship, we will repair the piece at no charge. If, however, your jewelry sustains damage due to wear, neglect or accidents, we are not responsible. We will gladly advise you with any preventative care and maintenance.
Care and Maintenance - Gemstones can become loose in their settings due to impact under many circumstances. Even diamonds, which are the hardest, can chip, abrade, or break when struck with enough force at the right angle. For these reasons, Jewelsmith recommends personal jewelry insurance for coverage of the unexpected.
We recommend having your jewelry cleaned and the setting(s) inspected by our goldsmiths or an American Gem Society (AGS) accredited jeweler at least twice a year. We offer complimentary cleaning, inspections and stone tightening of all Jewelsmith jewelry. Eventually, we may suggest updates or refurbishments that are consistent with the wear and age of the piece. In addition, we recommend removing your jewelry while doing yard work, cleaning, heavy lifting (including at the gym) and enthusiastic clapping. Note well that gemstones and pearls, as well as precious and alternative metals, require specific and differential care dependent on your daily activities.
What are the different types of appraisals?
We offer 4 types of jewelry appraisals, all of which are detailed below. Simply let us know which category suits your needs when you drop your jewelry off for appraisal.
• Insurance of Replacement - This is the estimated value for which a similarly described item could be purchased if alike in quality, material and craftsmanship at the time of the appraisal from a merchant who normally stocks and deals in the type of merchandise in question.
• Fair Market Value - This is the estimated cash value of an item in “as is” condition which would change hands between a willing buyer and seller, neither being under any compulsion to buy or sell and both having reasonable knowledge of the relevant facts. This price would be determined in an orderly sale in a market within a reasonable time of thirty days to twelve months.
• Liquidation Value - This would be the same as above, but in a forced sale within a time frame of seven to thirty days, with one or both of the parties being an unwilling participant.
• Antique - Antique and unusual items that are considered not replaceable, the appraisal represents the current replacement value. This type of evaluation is quite rare and not often used as Jewelsmith can reproduce most items.
How do I store and care for my pearls?
Read over our list of Do's and Don'ts to ensure your pearls can be worn and loved for generations.
• Do wear your pearls! You can't enjoy them nearly as much if they're forever stuck in the bottom of your jewelry box. Regular care will greatly extend the life of your pearls and give you the peace of mind to keep wearing and loving them!
• Do store pearls in a soft velvet or satin bag/pouch to prevent them from touching other potentially abrasive jewelry. Pearls should never be wrapped in cotton or wool, because the heat generated would add to the risk of drying and cracking.
• Do wipe pearls regularly with a soft cloth or chamois moistened with water. This will prevent dirt from accumulating and keep perspiration, which is slightly acidic, from eating away at the pearl nacre. If pearls are very dirty they can be cleaned by your jeweler or washed in water with a mild soap such as Ivory. After washing your pearls, rinse well with clear warm water and lay them flat on a soft towel to dry.
• Don't clean pearls with commercial jewelry cleaners, ultrasonic cleaners, steam cleaners, detergents, bleaches, powdered cleaners, toothpaste, or baking soda. Do not use toothbrushes, scouring pads, or any other abrasive material to clean pearls.
• Don't wear pearls to the hair salon, tanning salon, gym, or around water (i.e. swimming or taking a shower).
• Do be gentle. Pearls are formed inside a living mollusk and actually retain small amounts of water and protein, as well as a healthy dose of crystalline calcium carbonate, a material that's extra sensitive to chemicals and acid. Rating only a meager 2.5-4.5 on the Mohs hardness scale, pearls are indeed quite soft and delicate gems.
• Do protect your pearls from chemicals such as vinegar, alcohol, ammonia, bleach, swimming pool and hot tub water, hair spray, perfume and cosmetics. When dressing, pearls should be the last thing that you put on and the first thing that you take off.
• Do bring us your pearls for regular check-ups every year or so. The silk thread can weaken and stretch over time and wear, which gives the pearls more room to shift around and slice away at the thread. Most strands will need to be re-strung every year or two.