Remco Broekhuis, founder of DiamondsByMe:
Whether you would like a customized ring or necklace, or simply design your own jewel from scratch. DiamondsByMe offers exclusive, handmade jewellery which suit every budget. Founder of DiamondsByMe, Remco Broekhuis, shares his thoughts on the new way of crafting and his love of coloured gemstones.
Remco Broekhuis, founder of DiamondsByMe, says it brings him much joy when people customize or fully design a bracelet, ring or necklace and decide to add a or several coloured gemstones. ‘Normally, people don’t choose a ruby, sapphire, garnet or emerald gemstone that often. It is a risky choice, but then again, these gemstones are pretty rare. You will probably be the only one wearing such an exquisite, big sapphire or emerald gemstone. Most jewellers don’t even sell these gemstones, but I know exactly how to get them in Europe. My own wife wears a wedding ring with a bright yellow square shaped diamond, which is as remarkable as she is.’
His father was a watchmaker and a jeweller. He owned a shop in Puttershoek. He worked with a goldsmith and one day Remco accompanied him to pick up some repairs in his attic. He must have been around 10 or 11 years old and immediately he was hooked. He stared in total awe when the goldsmith started magically playing with fire. He handled the file and pliers with the utmost care, very precisely and with great focus. And slowly but steadily something beautiful started to reveal itself, a shiny jewel. An exquisite jewel, perfectly finished by hand.
‘I was unable to take my eyes of it’. It was that afternoon he decided: ‘When I grow up, I want to be a goldsmith.’
His parents noticed the change. They built him a workbench in the attic at home, which included a blowtorch. He had already attempted to create silver jewellery before starting trade school in Schoonhoven. He had also been an intern to a goldsmith in Barendrecht. After his studies, he worked in a design studio. He had to fix jewels all day long, which was okay for the time being. But he wanted more, a studio of his own. And so he did start his very own out of home studio. For two years he ran his shop from the attic in Barendrecht. ‘That turned out to be a great success because we soon had 6 other goldsmiths working with me for 10 to 12 hours a day. We were just creating beautiful jewellery.’ And still it wasn’t enough. ‘I would meet the jeweller whenever he or she picked up an order, but I never saw the customer, nor his or her response. And that response adds sparkle to a jewel, in my opinion.’
He opened a shop in Spijkenisse, and included a studio next to it. Then he also opened a shop in Hellevoetsluis. ‘With the rise of internet, 12 or 13 years ago, I decided to start an online jewellery shop called Trendjuwelier. I gave my studio to a friend but kept my tools. I was adamant, I was going to do it all over again.’ He is and will always be a craftsman: ‘From shoemaker to violin maker, or any other craft. I simply love what people can do with their own two hands. Unfortunately, craftsmanship seems to be going out of style.’
Remco doesn’t like to be idle. He just wants to keep moving forward. ‘At the beginning of 2000, I was the only jeweller in the world who owned a laser. This helps you improve your repairs.’ That is the reason he attends international trade fairs on a regular basis. ‘Suppliers ask me all the time why I attend trade fairs. The answer is easy, I want to learn and move forward.’ It was at a trade fair in Hong Kong, six years ago, when he first came up with the idea of DiamondsByMe. He came across a 3D printer and wanted it instantly. He didn’t fully understand the technique yet, but he was hooked anyway.
He had to figure out everything himself, from customizing to 3D printing. He had to be a pioneer, more or less invent things himself, because no other goldsmith or jeweller had done this before. ‘I was busy doing research for over a year and then I built a website within 2 more. Our database contains over 40 million photos. This makes it possible to create all types of online designs. Even in 3D motion. Before a ring is even finished, you are able to see in a video how it fits your finger.’
That is what makes the new way of crafting so interesting. ‘In the old days, a customer would convey their wishes and a goldsmith would start creating your jewel. Nowadays, you can discuss and change a design online.’ Polishing, and setting of stones; that is what makes this ancient craft so special. ‘Jewels have a story to share. They translate emotions. They make memories. I feel honoured to be the interpreter and to be part of someone’s life in a way. Very special indeed.’
DiamondsByMe is the only artisan jeweller in the world that offers you the possibility to customize or even design exclusive jewellery. The online company from Rhoon is a pioneer in the new way of crafting handmade jewellery. They make the process of creating easier and faster by offering their online service. The diamonds and other gemstones are obtained legally through trustworthy suppliers. DiamondsByMe has 28 employees.
Simply customize your jewels online, based on your own likes and preferences. We have a vast collection of precious metals, gemstones in all shapes, colours, and sizes to choose from.