How To Start A Jewellery Business In The UK – 2024 Guide

Are you passionate about jewellery? Do you dream of turning your creativity into a thriving business? Have you ever thought to yourself, ‘how do you start a jewellery business?’ Starting a jewellery business in the UK could be an exciting and rewarding venture for you – but it requires careful planning and execution.

In this comprehensive guide, we’ll walk you through how to set up a jewellery business in the UK, turning your passion for jewellery into a brilliant and exciting career.


What Does the UK Jewellery Industry Look Like Today?

The UK jewellery industry has witnessed a surge in small online jewellery brands and independent stores in recent years. Thanks to the rise of e-commerce platforms and social media, aspiring jewellery entrepreneurs have greater access to customers and can more easily showcase their unique designs to a global audience.


Should You Launch a Jewellery Business?

Starting a jewellery business in the UK offers numerous benefits to creative entrepreneurs, including the opportunity to express your creativity, work flexible hours, and own a company with high profit margins. With the right marketing strategy and product differentiation, a jewellery business can be highly profitable, especially if you pick the right niche.


shows two gold rings - how to start a jewellery business in the UK


What Qualifications Do You Need To Start a Jewellery Business?

Although formal qualifications aren’t mandatory for starting a jewellery business, having a background in jewellery design or business management would help. But even then, passion, creativity, and dedication are often more critical factors for success in the jewellery industry.


What Are The Different Types of Jewellery Business?

If you decide to launch a jewellery business, you’ll first need to determine what kind of business to run. Here’s an overview of the main types of jewellery business:


E-commerce Boutique: An online or e-commerce boutique exclusively sells jewellery through e-commerce platforms or dedicated websites. Online boutiques are convenient for customers as they’re accessible worldwide, with limitless designs and styles at their fingertips. They’re also easier and more convenient to set up than other business types. Examples of this business type include Catbird, AUrate, and Mejuri.

Brick-and-Mortar Jewellery Store: These jewellery stores provide a physical retail space for customers to browse and purchase jewellery. They are typically what people think of when they think about a ‘jewellery store.’ Brick-and-mortar jewellery stores offer a personalised shopping experience, allowing customers to try on pieces and receive expert advice from staff. Examples include Tiffany & Co., Pandora, and H. Samuel.

Custom Jewellery Design: Some jewellery businesses specialise in custom-made pieces, offering personalised design services for individual clients. Custom jewellery design allows customers to create unique and meaningful pieces tailored to their preferences and specifications. Vrai, Brilliant Earth, and Blue Nile are all examples of this type of business.


shows a woman making handmade jewellery


Handmade Jewellery: Handmade jewellery businesses focus on artisanal craftsmanship and unique designs, often targeting niche markets of discerning customers. Handmade jewellery usually represents authenticity and individuality, with each piece crafted with care and attention to detail. For this type of business, you can usually start from home with relatively cheap equipment and materials. Examples of this business type include Alex Monroe, Anna Sheffield, and Monica Vinader.

By understanding the different types of jewellery businesses and their unique characteristics, you can choose the most suitable model for your entrepreneurial goals and target market. This is a key step when learning how to start a jewellery business.


Should You Create Fashion Jewellery or High-End Jewellery?

Once you’ve decided what type of jewellery business to launch, you’ll then need to decide what kind of jewellery to make: fashion or high-end. Here’s the difference:


Fashion jewellery refers to affordable, trend-driven pieces made from non-precious materials such as base metals, glass, or plastic. Fashion jewellery is accessible to a wide range of consumers and often follows seasonal trends. Examples include BaubleBar, Kendra Scott, and Kate Spade.

High-end jewellery, on the other hand, consists of luxury items crafted from precious metals and gemstones such as gold, platinum, diamonds, and pearls. High-end jewellery is characterised by exquisite craftsmanship, fine materials, and higher price points. Examples include Cartier, Bulgari, and Harry Winston.


Rules and Regulations Involved With Setting Up a Jewellery Business

Setting up a jewellery business in the UK involves navigating considerable rules and regulations to ensure the business remains compliant and legal. Here’s a detailed breakdown of what you need to consider and account for before launching a jewellery business:


#1 Business Registration: Begin by registering your jewellery business with Companies House if you’re operating as a limited company or with HM Revenue & Customs (HMRC) if operating as a sole trader or partnership*.

You need to choose a suitable business structure that aligns with your long-term goals and legal obligations: a corporate structure is generally more suitable for larger businesses with multiple sites, whereas a sole trader or partnership structure could be more appropriate for smaller businesses.

*This is an important decision, so seek legal advice before choosing a business structure.

#2 Permits and Licences: Depending on your business activities and location, you may need to obtain specific permits and licences to operate legally. For example, if selling precious metals or gemstones, you may require a license from the local authority or the National Association of Jewellers (NAJ).


shows necklaces and bracelets


# 3 Health and Safety Regulations: Your business must comply with all the relevant health and safety regulations applicable to jewellery manufacturing and retail operations. This includes implementing safe working practices, proper ventilation, and appropriate handling of hazardous materials – including personal protective equipment (PPE).

#4 Product Compliance: Familiarise yourself with product compliance standards for jewellery, including hallmarking requirements and regulations governing the use of precious metals and gemstones. Ensure your products meet quality standards and labelling requirements to avoid legal issues and maintain consumer trust.

#5 Data Protection and GDPR: If collecting and storing customer data for marketing or transactional purposes, ensure compliance with data protection laws, including the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR). Implement robust data security measures to protect customer information from unauthorised access or misuse.


How Much Does Starting a Jewellery Business Cost?

Starting a jewellery business in the UK involves various costs and expenses that need to be carefully budgeted for. Here’s a breakdown of the typical costs involved with launching a jewellery business:


#1 Equipment and Materials: Invest in high-quality jewellery-making tools, equipment, and materials, including precious metals, gemstones, and findings. The cost of equipment can vary depending on the scale and complexity of your operations.

#2 Website Development and E-commerce Platform: If launching an online jewellery store, budget for website development, hosting fees, and e-commerce platform subscriptions. These vary depending on the complexity of your website. Whatever size you need, you should consider hiring a professional web designer or developer to create a visually appealing and user-friendly website.

#3 Inventory and Stock: Allocate funds for purchasing initial inventory and stock, including raw materials for jewellery production and finished products for resale. Research suppliers and wholesalers to find competitive prices and quality products.

#4 Marketing and Advertising: Set aside a marketing and advertising expenses budget to promote your jewellery business and attract customers. This may include digital marketing campaigns, social media advertising, influencer partnerships, and participation in trade shows or events.

#5 Insurance: Don’t overlook the importance of insurance for protecting your jewellery business against risks such as theft, damage, and liability. Budget for insurance premiums based on the coverage options and levels of protection required for your business.

#6 Rent and Utilities: If operating a physical storefront or workshop, you need to factor in the cost of rent, utilities, and maintenance for your premises. Location plays a significant role in rental expenses, so make sure to pick a spot that balances visibility and affordability.

#7 Professional Services: Consider hiring professionals for accounting, legal, and marketing consultancy services to ensure you’re legally compliant and get the best strategic guidance for your jewellery business. While these services may incur additional expenses, they can provide much-needed expertise and support.


By estimating and budgeting for these costs upfront, you can plan your finances effectively and ensure a smooth and successful launch for your jewellery business.


Hiring Employees vs. Starting Solo

Deciding whether to hire employees or operate solo is a critical consideration when starting a jewellery business in the UK, so here are some factors to consider:


Solo Entrepreneurship


  • Gives you complete control over decision-making and operations.
  • Lowers your overhead costs and payroll expenses.
  • Provides greater flexibility and autonomy in managing workload and schedule.



  • Limits your capacity for growth and your business’s scalability.
  • Increased workload and responsibility for you in every aspect of the business.
  • Potential for burnout and exhaustion from managing all aspects of the business single-handedly.


Hiring Employees


  • Lets you delegate tasks and responsibilities, allowing for greater efficiency and productivity.
  • Gives you access to specialised skills and expertise to support different aspects of the business, such as jewellery design, marketing, and customer service.
  • Provides an opportunity to build a collaborative and supportive team environment.



  • Higher overhead costs associated with employee salaries, benefits, and training.
  • Adds the complexity of managing and supervising employees, including recruitment, performance management, and compliance with employment laws.
  • Potential for conflicts or disagreements among team members.


When deciding whether to start solo or hire employees, you need to consider your business goals, workload, and personal preferences. You can start solo initially and gradually expand your team as your business grows and workload increases.


shows real gold bracelets on display - how to start a jewellery business in the UK


Should You Start a Jewellery Business Online?

Launching an online jewellery business offers numerous advantages, including:


#1 Global Reach: You can more easily reach a wider audience beyond your local area and tap into global markets through e-commerce platforms and digital marketing channels.

#2 Lower Overhead Costs: Compared to operating a physical store, an online jewellery business requires minimal overhead costs for rent, utilities, and maintenance.

#3 24/7 Accessibility: Your online store is accessible to customers 24/7, allowing for continuous sales and revenue generation outside regular business hours.

#4 Data-Driven Insights: e-commerce stores let you leverage modern analytics tools and customer data to gain valuable insights into customer behaviour, preferences, and purchasing patterns. In turn, this enables you to optimise your marketing strategies and product offerings.


How to Choose Which Jewellery Products to Sell

When starting a jewellery business, one of the key decisions you’ll need to make is whether to make your own jewellery pieces or source existing designs from suppliers.

Each approach has its own advantages and considerations:


Making and Selling Your Own Jewellery

Making jewellery allows for creative expression and customization, and gives you complete control over the design process and materials used. This approach is ideal for jewellery designers who are passionate about craftsmanship and artistic vision.



  • Gives you creative freedom to design and produce unique pieces.
  • Also lets you control quality and craftsmanship standards.
  • Provides an opportunity to establish a distinct brand identity and aesthetic.



  • Time-consuming and labour-intensive production process.
  • Requires investment in tools, equipment, and materials.
  • Limits your scalability due to production constraints and time commitments.


Sourcing Existing Jewellery Pieces to Sell

Sourcing existing jewellery pieces from suppliers or wholesalers offers convenience and flexibility, allowing you to quickly build a diverse product range without extensive manufacturing capabilities.



  • Wide selection of designs and styles available for resale.
  • Lower upfront investment compared to making jewellery from scratch.
  • Greater flexibility to adapt to changing market trends and customer preferences.



  • Limited control over the design and quality of products.
  • Competition from other retailers selling similar items potentially limits your profits.
  • Dependence on suppliers and wholesalers for inventory replenishment can leave you with low stock levels, limiting your profits.


Ultimately, the decision to make jewellery or source existing pieces depends on your skills, resources, and business objectives. Some jewellery businesses may choose to incorporate both approaches to offer a diverse product range and cater to different customer preferences.


shows handmade earrings on a wooden table


Analysing Competition in Your Area: How to Find Market Opportunities

Before launching your jewellery business, it’s essential to conduct a thorough analysis of the competitive landscape to identify market opportunities and positioning strategies. Here are some steps to help you analyse competition in your area:


Market Research: Start by researching existing jewellery businesses in your target area, including online competitors and local brick-and-mortar stores. Evaluate their product offerings, pricing strategies, target demographics, and marketing tactics to gain insights into the competitive landscape. Beware – you may discover that your desired area of operation isn’t suitable because there’s too much competition, in which case you’ll have to launch your business elsewhere.

SWOT Analysis: Conduct a SWOT analysis (Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities, Threats) of your competitors to identify their key strengths and weaknesses, as well as potential opportunities and threats in the market. This analysis can help you pinpoint areas where you can differentiate your jewellery business and capitalise on market gaps.

Customer Feedback and Reviews: Gather feedback from customers who have purchased from competing jewellery businesses to understand their preferences, pain points, and satisfaction levels. Online reviews and testimonials can provide valuable insights into areas where competitors excel or fall short, helping you tailor your offerings to meet customer needs more effectively or even find your own niche.

Location Analysis: If you plan to operate a physical storefront, evaluate the location of existing jewellery stores in your area to assess the level of competition and market saturation. Consider factors such as foot traffic, proximity to other retail establishments, and accessibility for potential customers.

Product Differentiation: Identify opportunities to differentiate your jewellery business from competitors by offering unique products, innovative designs, or value-added services. Consider niche markets or underserved customer segments that competitors may overlook, such as sustainable jewellery, personalised jewellery, or culturally-inspired designs.

Pricing Strategy: Analyse competitor pricing strategies to ensure your pricing is competitive while still allowing for sufficient profit margins. Consider factors such as product quality, craftsmanship, and brand perception when determining your pricing strategy.


By conducting a thorough analysis of the competitive landscape, you can gain valuable insights into market opportunities and position your jewellery business for success.


shows jewellery in a shop window - how to start a jewellery business in the UK


Insuring Your Jewellery Business: Importance of Safety and Security

Insuring your jewellery business is crucial for protecting your assets, mitigating risks, and ensuring financial security during unexpected events. Here are some key considerations for insuring your jewellery business:


Property Insurance: Protect your jewellery inventory, equipment, and premises from risks such as theft, fire, vandalism, and natural disasters with property insurance. This coverage provides financial compensation for repair or replacement costs for property damage or loss.

Product Liability Insurance: Safeguard your business against claims of injury or property damage caused by your jewellery products with product liability insurance. This coverage protects you from legal expenses and compensation payments arising from product-related accidents or defects.

Public Liability Insurance: If operating a physical store or participating in events or exhibitions, public liability insurance is essential to protect against claims of injury or property damage to third parties. This coverage provides financial protection for legal expenses and compensation payments resulting from accidents or incidents on your premises.

Business Interruption Insurance: In the event of a disaster or unforeseen circumstances that disrupt your business operations, business interruption insurance provides financial compensation for lost income and ongoing expenses during recovery. This coverage ensures your business can continue operating and remain financially stable during challenging times.


Investing in insurance coverage for your jewellery business lets you enjoy peace of mind knowing that your assets are safeguarded and your business is protected against unforeseen risks and liabilities.


Why Park Insurance?

Thanks for reading our guide on how to start a jewellery business in the UK. From understanding the UK jewellery market and choosing the right business model to insuring your jewellery business and addressing key considerations, every aspect of your journey as a jewellery entrepreneur is essential to your success. At Park Insurance, we support you every step of the way with tailored insurance solutions designed to protect your assets and liabilities.

Start your journey to entrepreneurial success today and embark on the exciting adventure of starting a jewellery business in the UK with a little help from Park Insurance.