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- 10 things to consider when buying Australian made jewellery -

sexy blonde girl wearing sterling silver ocean inspired shell sterling silver pendant made in Australia

awesome Jewellery designed and made in Australia

When we speak to people we get the feeling many Australians are a lot more conscious about the source of the product they are thinking about buying. Food, clothing, furniture and other household items generally get made overseas and imported. Although there is a huge movement happening where people are preferring to buy Australian-produced items.

A lot of people ask us if we are an Australian jewellery designer, of course we are, a quick phone call and you’ll listen to our Aussie accents in all their glory. All the handmade sterling silver earrings, pendants and stacker rings we have designed were done in our workshop on the Sunshine Coast in Queensland.

If you do a quick search online you will find lots of incredible Australian jewellery designers mentioned. General interest and fashion websites like Marie ClaireFashion Journal, Russh or Sitchu have quite a few companies featured. Often these will be a mix of paid advertisers and local brands quickly trending on social media.

What it clearly demonstrates though is how much choice we have in Australia to buy locally and this is also why we founded Kaikoa Designs with our focus on ocean inspired jewellery designs. Supporting Australian businesses is more important than ever. By purchasing Australian made products you are supporting the economy at every level. When purchasing jewellery we understand that you want to know that what you are purchasing is both quality and supports the local economy.

But what does it mean to be a truly Australian business? We have thought long and hard about this and have come up with some important factors that we believe you should consider when shopping for Australian made jewellery.

Blonde woman with white top wearing sea shell shaped earrings made out of sterling silver made in Australia

Where is it actually made?

Sometimes products may be designed in Australia, but then manufactured overseas. Is it always worth researching the company to find out if their items are actually made in Australia or not. This is often due to the fact that wages are much lower overseas. By supporting a locally owned and operated jewellery designer you are putting a smile on someone’s face rather than lining the pockets of a faceless corporation using cheap labour.

At KaiKoa Designs we proudly design and manufacture all of our jewellery by hand in our studio on the Sunshine Coast (Gubbi-Gubbi Land) in Queensland, Australia. 

Not only are we located in Australia we also love to support other small local businesses at every chance we have. We are so appreciative when our customers support us so we want to share that love and support other local businesses.

Authenticity and quality

When investing in a piece of jewellery you want to be sure that you are buying a quality piece that is worth the price tag. There is nothing worse than spending your hard earned money on a new piece and finding out that it leaves green marks on your skin because it isn’t made from the materials that you expected.

If you are buying sterling silver for the first time do a little bit of research before you reach for your wallet to buy something. Where is the company located? Does it say where the pieces are actually made? Do they have any certifications or accreditations that showcase the claims that they are making? Are their prices too good to be true?

We are open and honest about where and how we make all of our handcrafted pieces. We have nothing to hide and we hope this is evident to you. We only purchase the highest quality silver and we have carefully selected our silver provider who has been in the industry for decades. We trust their expertise and know their product is the authentic silver product that we require for our designs.

Blonde woman wearing sea shell shaped earrings made in Australia in sterling silver with white top
ocean-inspired-drop-earrings

Customer service

If you have issues with your jewellery or simply need to ask a question, is the customer service team located in Australia? There is nothing more frustrating than wanting to contact someone from the company you just purchased from and either not being able to find the contact information or getting stuck with one of those chat bots that can’t actually answer your question. 

Before you purchase a piece, check their returns policy because there is nothing worse than being stuck with a purchase that you aren’t 100% happy with. 

An Australian based customer service team means that they will be working in your time zone and you should be able to get the answer that you need when you require it. We love hearing from our customers so feel free to reach out to us and we will answer any query you have.

Unique designs

You want a special piece that is unique and shows your personality. Do you really want a piece that thousands of people are already wearing?

Make your jewellery stand out by supporting a small Australian based jewellery business like ours. We are aware of the devastating impacts of fast fashion but fast jewellery has severe impacts as well. If you are looking for unique pieces then step away from the mass market retailers with their products worn by lots of people. Buying from an independent brand means you can purchase a unique creation.

We love to create unique ocean inspired pieces that stand out from the crowd. Life is too short to wear the same jewellery as everyone else. Wear your love for the ocean on your body and showcase handcrafted sustainable jewellery at the same time.

women wearing sterling silver hoop earring with beach inspired design made in Australia
Handmade sterling silver ring on a finger made in Australia with the shape of a wave

Material sourcing

Knowing where the gemstones and precious metals are sourced from is important for both the quality of the piece and the ethics behind its manufacture. No one wants to support the exploitation of foreign workers and we’ve all heard about blood diamonds as well as the devastating impacts of unethical practices like this can have.

At KaiKoa Designs we source our sterling silver from a leading supplier that is well respected in the industry and has been in operation for decades. Their metals are created by recycling waste from the jewellery industry within the Australiasia region.

Their metal recycling program has been operational for 80 years and has made a name for itself throughout the industry.

Eco-friendly

Understanding if a brand focuses on sustainability in both their manufacturing and their sales process is important to many Australian consumers.

The silver that we utilise in our designs is produced from recycled metal waste. The fine tuned refining process is focused on environmental sustainability and by recycling waste products to create a high quality product we are diverting waste from landfill. 

Our market stall is handcrafted with sustainable and recycled products. The recycled timber props and stands were handcrafted by our co-founder Marc.

Buying sustainable jewellery is more than just the actual pieces – the end to end functions of the company should be considered.

sterling silver beach inspired ring worn by woman in black bikini made in Australia
sterling silver ocean inspired coral ring made in Australia

Inspired locally

For anyone who has travelled you quickly realise that every country has its own ‘way’ and this applies to food, clothing, architecture and style. 

It’s true, companies who make jewellery overseas can copy design ideas, but nothing is quite the same as genuine items that were inspired by local aspects of our culture.

The landscape, beaches and oceans around Australia are unique, sure, fish swim under the water all around the world but the combination of weather, climate, culture and environment are unique to our country, that authenticity can’t be simply copied when you buy Australian made handcrafted jewellery.

Durability

Like lots of other things in this world you might read a label that it contains a particular material or has certain ingredients. Although what proportion is in that mix and does it really stack up to the claims being made?

We went through a detailed process to source high quality silver from local sources so that every piece we create will deal with being worn daily if that is walking around at home or going for a swim in the ocean.

unique starfish styled earrings made in Australia out of sterling silver
handmade sterling silver ring for sale in Australia with beach inspired design pattern

What is their ‘why’

What does their company represent, what values to they uphold? In today’s consumer-centric world you have thousands of choices and lots of company’s simply exist to make a profit, pay their workers and help their managers take home a bonus each month.

Some Australian jewellery brands will actually exist to also give back, to have a reason for being other than making a profit. KaiKoa is one of those and it is why we get involved in local causes to help clean up our oceans. 

Learn more about causes we support here

Maintenance

The last small detail that nobody really considers when buying jewellery is how to maintain it. We’ve written a short guide on how you can keep your pieces looking amazing that you can read here.

how to clean tarnish off your sterling silver jewellery