What contracts or legal advice do we need for loaning Jewelry to a Celebrity?

A musician contacted me asking if she could wear one of my pieces on the red carpet and have a photo shoot as well.  As much as I would love for a celebrity to wear my art work, the ideas scares me too. I fear not seeing my jewelry again or receiving it damaged. My piece would be on loan for a couple of weeks, I suppose, and would then be sent back.

Does anyone have any legal advice, paper work that has been written for contracts and loan agreements? Insurance, liability, shipment, credits etc? Any info will help. Thank you!

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Hi Cheryl,


My first question is why is the musician unable to purchase the work? Unless the piece is super expensive she should be able to purchase it and support a fellow artist. If she buys the piece then life will be so much easier for her as she will not have to worry about getting the piece back to you etc.

I receive numerous loan requests, especially from fashion stylists, and I am very particular about who I work with is such situations.    If I loan a piece, I use a contract similar to a consignment agreement for exhibitions.


 It states the following:

1-The artist must receive credit for the work in publicity images

2-The exact dates the item is to be on loan

3-The loanee is responsible for any shipping and insurance charges both from and to the artist

4-The loanee is responsible for any damages to the work

5-Loanee must provide a valid credit card number in the event the item is not returned or damaged

6-Loanee should provide references from artists/designers that have loaned them work in the past.

7-An exact description and photo of the work plus the full retail price of them item.

8-The loaner (you) must receive copies (digital or hard copies) of any publicity images that feature the musician in the piece and that you have the rights to use them for your own publicity.


I charge a 20% rental fee (of the full retail price) for any loans in which I will not receive credit, such as music videos, tv spots, or print media that does not list designer credits, etc. If you're really concerned about how your work will be handled, you can also charge a refundable security deposit as an added incentive for the loanee to take extra good care of your work.  I hope this helps.  



I have a contract which I am working on for the PRofessional Guidelines.

Send me your email and I will share it with you in advance.




Hi Harriete,

That would be great! Thank you!!

I have been following your PRofessional Guidelines. I looked to see if I could find one that applied for these circumstances. Thank you for sharing and helping!!



Hi Michelle,

Thank you for getting back with me! I agree, I had the same question. It seems like celebrities are used to having stuff loaned to them at no costs? It would be great if she could buy a piece but all our conversations have been about borrowing art and not buying. Im sure she could afford it. 

How do you usually communicate with the stylist/laonee? By email, phone, skype? I also worry about scams where artist send work and they never receive it back. 

Your notes do help a lot! I figured doing a consignment approach like you mentioned.  I will make a contract agreement and send it her way. I also like the idea of the 20% rental fee and especially the refundable security deposit. I doubt I will have designer credits. If she buys the piece she does not need to have designer credits correct? As for the 20% rental fee, does that include any damage done to the piece? Should I just propose all these options to her? Sorry for all my questions!!


Thank YOU Michelle!


Hi Cheryl,


You're very welcome.  I hope this loan worked out well for you.  Before loaning anything, especially to a new contact, whether its for exhibition, stylist, etc I always communicate with the people involved via phone or Skype.  Email is great and many conversations start of that way, but "in person" communication really helps build rapport. You can also find out a lot about a person's level of professionalism based on how they conduct themselves via phone/skype.   You can always send a follow up email after the phone/skype call to confirm the details of the discussion and put to "everything in writing."  


Glad to be of help,


PS It also doesn't hurt to ask for referrals.


Hi Michelle,


My experience was a little disappointing and somewhat not acknowledging from the other end. I did have a phone conversation with the person and felt at first we were on the same page. I emailed the contract info and so forth and asked to send it back before mailing the jewelry. In the mean time, I was pressured by them to send the work ASAP given they had a photo shoot scheduled. Unfortunately, I sent the piece with no signed contract. The recipient was very reluctant to sign it and I have still not been reimbursed for my shipping cost after I was told I would be. I have my piece back but I must say lesson learned!  At least, I feel a lot more prepared if I loan my artwork again. 


Thank you for all your great input and blogging!



Glad to hear you got the work back safe and sound.  Bummer about the pressure they put on you.  Have they sent you copies of the images yet?  You should use those images in your promo materials (citing full credit to the photographer, stylist, model etc)  I would consider the shipping costs part of your adversting expenses.  The photo shoot I did with Hot Pink Style for ICON magazine was an $80 investment in shipping, but resulted in significant sales because I sent an email blast about the shoot, including images and the credits I mentioned above, to my mailing list as soon as the magazine came out.  I made my money back many times over from that one fashion feature.

An agreement for this kind of thing does not have to be complicated.

State clearly that the item(s) are on loan and for what period of time.

Include photographs of the items (front, back and details to show condition)

State the full replacement value.

State the terms and liabilities. ie all responsibility/liability for damage, theft loss lies with the loanee. Loan is not transferable to a third party.

State Terms for payment of full replacement value or partial (ie damage)

Make sure you get this signed before handing over the jewelry.

Thank you 2Roses. I appreciate your recommendations, these have all been very useful. I would have skipped some of these if I would not have asked. Thank you again!


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