Handmade vs. mass produced Jewellery Print this pagePrint this page

Handmade vs. mass produced Jewellery

At Hatton Jewels we’re often asked about the differences around handmade and mass produced jewellery, or the difference between buying jewellery from a high street retailer or a popular large jewellery shop such as Tiffanys, and buying from a local, or boutique jeweller. There is a large difference in the way different retailers and stores source their gemstones and create pieces, so we’re going to answer some of the most questions we are asked, and show why we think handmade jewellery is often the best way to go when buying your special purchase.

Is all Jewellery handmade?

No! There are generally two types of jewellery, handmade, literally coming from the hands of a jeweller and machined, made mostly by a machine. Some jewellers will use machines and then hand finish the piece using a master jeweller which we define as ‘hand finished’. 

How can you tell if Jewellery is handmade?

No one piece of handmade jewellery is truly the same, which is not true of machined jewellery. If the piece has been hammered or a texture is present, usually there are slight variations that the eye can pick up, or can be seen through a jewellery loupe. Handmade jewellery will also often have the designer's hallmark engraved on it. 

Is handmade Jewellery more expensive?

Generally, yes. Machined jewellery takes less time to produce and has higher cost efficiencies, whereas handmade jewellery can take a lot longer when it’s being worked on by a single jeweller. If the piece is bespoke, the design and iteration time also needs to be considered. 

Is handmade Jewellery better?

Handmade jewellery is often created with more care and passion, and with a greater level of craftsmanship that has taken years to perfect. This creates a more unique piece which is generally considered to be of a higher value and standard, and more precious to its owner.


Mass produced jewellery will also sometimes use lower quality, but more durable materials to make manufacturing easier. 

How is Jewellery mass produced?

Generally, large-scale machinery is utilised to create moulds and designs that are identical to each other. Sometimes these pieces can be finished with a personal engraving, but the design itself is not unique.


If you’re looking for any unique handcrafted or hand finished jewellery, simply book an appointment online, or give us a call on 0203 116 0069 and speak to one of our friendly, expert members of staff who can help guide you through any type of jewellery purchase. We are highly regarded jewellery professionals who can usually offer more than you would receive at an auction, and offer fully insured postage and part exchange options. We also offer jewellery valuation for insurance purposes, or if you have some vintage jewellery you’re looking to sell, use our selling jewellery page. 


We’ve helped thousands of customers over the years design custom rings (with our design your engagement ring service), choose the perfect present for an anniversary, sell jewellery and choose jewellery for many special occasions, so if there is something you’d like but can’t see online, we’re confident we can make it to your exact needs, just get in touch.