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How to Take Close Up Photos Using a Jeweler's Loupe With an Older Phone

Updated on March 3, 2016
Jewelry loupe used in photo examples
Jewelry loupe used in photo examples | Source

Do you need to take close-up photos, but don't have a regular camera or a newer cell phone that has this feature built-in?

Photographing small details on many items can be difficult, but clear, enlarged images are often needed.
Many folks can't afford a new phone and do not yet have a good camera. Here's how this user stumbled upon the idea to take good quality close-ups in another way.

Mom was a vintage jewelry dealer for years. One day, I had to get out her jewelry loupe to see writing on the back of a pin and this idea was born.
Why not try to use the old cell phone (that has a camera) with the loupe used as the extra lens - sort of how the photographers do with their cameras?
So, that's just what works to get close-up photos now. holding a loupe to my phone's camera lens to amplify the image clearly and it works great!

Time required: Just a few minutes for each item should be enough unless there are several areas that need to have detailed close-up photos or many different angles..

Difficulty: easy

Cost: $10.00 and up depending upon the type of jewelry loupe you wish to use.


  • The items that you want to photograph the close-up views..
  • Staging supplies for the background to show off the item in the best way.
  • Your camera phone that can have the flash feature shut off while shooting the cose-ups using a loupe..
  • A jewelry loupe.


  • Good lighting because you cannot use the flash feature when you are using the jewelry loupe.

One Type of Jeweler's Loupe to Use for Jewelry to See Maker's Marks and Details or for Close-up Photos When Needed


1. Have the area staged with a clean background and any props that you want to use in the display.

I am using a pretty paper doily, a plain cloth and a vintage glass hand to display this vintage, shades of green, 7 strand necklace from Japan with clip earrings.

This photo does not need to show details as it is an over-all shot to show the necklace and earrings set all at once.

2. This was a close-up to show the clasp and the word "Japan" that was stamped on it to show where this necklace was made.

I took this photo with my camera phone without using the jewelry loupe.

As you can see, it is somewhat blurry.

Prospective buyers want to see these types of things for themselves and not just take your word for it.

So, having good, images that show some details can really help make the sale.

3. Here is the view of the earring clips, close up.

This time, I used the jewelry loupe held up to my phone camera's lens and you can see how much clearer the image is now.

*I would think that this method would also work with an old camera that doesn't have a zoom feature nor extra lenses.

4. Remember to clean the lens of the loupe, as well as, the lens on your phone so that you can get the clearest picture.

A Blurry Image of the Marking Resulting From Not Using a Loupe

A Blurry Image of the Marking on the Necklace in the Jewelry Set Above.  This photo goes with number two of the above section.
A Blurry Image of the Marking on the Necklace in the Jewelry Set Above. This photo goes with number two of the above section. | Source

Photo Showing How a Jeweler's Loupe Can Get a Better Image

Using a jewelry loupe held to my old camera's lens gave me a much clearer close-up photo.  This image goes with number 3 of the above section.
Using a jewelry loupe held to my old camera's lens gave me a much clearer close-up photo. This image goes with number 3 of the above section. | Source

Hopefully, This Idea Was Helpful

Hopefully, this easy fix idea was helpful to you as well.
If you would like to see more examples of how using a simple jewelry loupe can help to get a better close-up when shooting vintage jewelry, have a look here to see many close-up photos, over at VintageJewelryByGramz on ecrater.

One of these days I hope to have a good camera just for taking these photos or a newer phone and not have to use this method of getting close-up photos, but until then, this way of doing it works rather well and will have to do.


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    • GiftsByDiana profile image

      Diana Burrell-Shipton 10 months ago from Hubbard, Ohio, USA

      I learned from my grandparents that you "make-do" and so I sure do just that.

      This little trick helped me out quite a bit, many times. I hope it has helped others as well :)

    • PegCole17 profile image

      Peg Cole 10 months ago from Dallas, Texas

      What an innovative way to take close-up photos. When I was selling on eBay it was important for the ad to identify any flaws or maker's marks on the pieces listed for sale. This is a great way to show the customer exactly what they're getting. Thanks for the tip.

    • GiftsByDiana profile image

      Diana Burrell-Shipton 3 years ago from Hubbard, Ohio, USA

      @OhMe: Thank u so much ! I do have a photo to go with each step so folks can see what I mean, but they are not uploading :(

    • OhMe profile image

      Nancy Tate Hellams 3 years ago from Pendleton, SC

      Wow, thats a great idea. So sorry about your mom but I am sure she is proud of how you are handling her Vintage Jewelry. I will have to take a look.