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Topic: Any jewelry makers here?

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Subject: Any jewelry makers here?
Date Posted: 10/19/2009 2:38 PM ET
Member Since: 2/23/2006
Posts: 4,505
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Hi!  I'd love to swap ideas with other jewelry makers here!  Shout out!

 

Edie

Date Posted: 10/29/2009 12:51 AM ET
Member Since: 10/22/2009
Posts: 1,891
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I'm here! Are you a polymer clay artist? I am!!! check out my site. I like your heart avatar : )

Date Posted: 11/7/2009 2:39 AM ET
Member Since: 7/5/2007
Posts: 1,157
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I do beading, and also work with gold and silver wire.

Date Posted: 11/14/2009 8:51 PM ET
Member Since: 9/2/2008
Posts: 14
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I bead and do polymer clay.  I love making bracelets and necklaces.  I joke that beading is my "therapy."  Would love to swap ideas with other beaders and polymer clay jewelers.

Stacey

Date Posted: 11/23/2009 9:42 PM ET
Member Since: 10/22/2009
Posts: 1,891
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I thought there would be more jewelry-making folks here. for ideas I think jewelry-specific magazines are a great way to go. now I am having fun spending all my profits before the end of the year!

Date Posted: 12/10/2009 11:15 AM ET
Member Since: 11/11/2009
Posts: 585
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I make jewelry using sterling and gold wire with beads.  I use a lot of pearls and semi-precious beads.  I've been buying gold and sterling Victorian watch chains on Ebay and then cutting them up to use with my beads to make necklaces and bracelets.  A couple of years ago I started using solid gold wire.  Wish I had bought a bigger stash before the price went so high.  I've sold some of my jewlery on Ebay but found that I barely got the cost of my materials out of the sale.  I think I've made more sales at work when people asked me to make items for them to give as gifts around the holidays.

Subject: The Frugal Artisan (jewelry, handbound journals, and cards) Here!
Date Posted: 12/15/2009 1:27 PM ET
Member Since: 12/9/2009
Posts: 11
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Yes, I am a jewelry artisan! 

Truth is stranger than fiction!  About 3 years ago I was given a big box of beads and findings by my full-time artist sister who cleaned out a newly deceased friend and fellow colleague's studio.  Egads!  Many earrings, bracelets and necklaces later I never looked back. 

Ever improving, I concentrate more and more on better quality gems and wire work.  No torch in the foreseeable future, thank you.

( Until I figure out how to put a picture inside this post, have a look here http://www.prettycheapjewelry.com )

 Nina

 

 

Date Posted: 12/27/2009 11:32 PM ET
Member Since: 11/28/2008
Posts: 2,119
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I started making jewelry about 5 years ago and quickly became addicted. I had a good friend who made jewelry and we feed each others addiction to making jewelry

I only intended to make a few things  and wanted to make sure the ear wires were sterling, or gold cause many other metals irritated my ears.

After a few years, I got bored with "stringing beads" and making do with things I could find or order from jewelry supply catelogs. Wasn't interested in doing detailed work with seed beads or making polymer clay beads... so started learning more about using wire and to make interesting design features and wraping stones. Also have been taking a few silver smithing  lessons, have started accumulating equipment. This part has a big learning curve, is expensive, and I love it. I have lots of ideas that utilize these new skills, but haven't mastered the skills well enough to make my ideas a reality. But I'm working on it.  Would also love to learn to work with glass, but probably will never get to that.

It definately helps to sell some of your products. The best I can hope for is just to help subsidize my hobby.  My friend and I  have been to a few local arts and craft shows. If you have precious metals, pearls, crystals & gemstones in your jewelry... you need to find one that is small, well established, and only has higher end crafts, then you will do pretty good... otherwise people will balk at your prices.  The people at the higher end craft festivals usually like  the idea of getting one-of-a-kind items.  The main thing to remember is DISPLAY! DISPLAY! DISPLAY!  Go check out craft festivals and get some good ideas on this. Display is as important (or more) than jewelry making skills.

We also sell some of our jewery on consignment at a local store and I do well at christmas there.  Mothers day is also another fairly good time. The rest of the time it is kind of slow with consigment items.  SInce I don't make lots and lots of items (it is still just a hobby afterall), this souces are good enough to handle what me and my partner can make to sell.

Havn't tried e-bay. Have a web page, but mainly is used by returning customers from craft festiavals or who bought items from local store. My web page is www.fandangals.com . If you see something you like, I'll be glad to share info on how I made it and where you can get materials for it.  One neat thing that really sells well (and is very inexpensive to make) is jewery from guitar picks and guitar strings. I have some of these on my web page as well.

Cheers.

Debbie

Date Posted: 12/29/2009 9:15 PM ET
Member Since: 10/22/2009
Posts: 1,891
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Debbie, glad to hear you're selling enough to pay for the hobby. that is great. too bad silver costs sooo much nowadays. funny you mention polymer clay, because I also had ZERO interest in polymer clay, didn't like it, etc. then I tried it! OMG, it's so fun and you can make amazing things. check out my site to see how I use polymer clay differently than most people. 

Date Posted: 12/30/2009 8:59 AM ET
Member Since: 11/28/2008
Posts: 2,119
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Lori,

Not sure which items are using the polymer clay, but the ones that I think have polymer clay in them (mostly from pendant sections) are awesome. it looks like some may also use precious metal clay. IMG_4883.jpg?disposition=download

For example:

Is this one made of polymer clay or precious metal clay?

 

Anyway, you are very talented. I also really like  your web page. Do you do it yourself?

 I do not sell enough to pay for my jewelry making hobby. I sell enough to help subsidize my hobby. I am using the profits from selling mainly to purchase some of the silversmithing equipment. I do manage to sell most all the items I have time to make (that are not for myself or wht I give to family and friends).

Debbie

Date Posted: 12/30/2009 8:25 PM ET
Member Since: 10/22/2009
Posts: 1,891
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believe it or not, that piece about is polymer clay. it's my own invention... a polymer clay bezel. I filled it with turquoise chips and cover the whole thing in resin. I did try PMC once, before I tried polymer and found it a little difficult and I was not thrilled. I do plan to take a class at some point, but am still having too much fun with what I do now! actually, I really want to take a class on copper or bronze clay - so much less expensive and just as beautiful! thank you for the compliments!!!! yes, I did the site on my own using iWeb. being able to subsidize your hobby is wonderful, cause that stuff gets so expensive! I am very fortunate that I sell enough to cover all my expenses plus a little. I also want to buy all the silversmithing equipment but with the cost of silver where it is I'd just rather stick with what I'm doing right now. there is a brand new site you might want to see. it's still in beta... wwww.claylessons.com. if you are into wire at all you might like www.jewelrylessons.com. anyway, if I can help you with anything feel free to email me! 

Date Posted: 12/30/2009 10:54 PM ET
Member Since: 11/28/2008
Posts: 2,119
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Lori- Wow...That really is neat. I don't know anything about working with polymer clay or using resin, but you have stirred my interest.

My husband is a "rock hound" and especially likes finding petrified wood. He does some neat things with the rocks and wood and then polishes them in a rock tumbler. I've tried wirewrapping and making some settings with some of his stones... especially the petrified wood. He slices the wood and rock into 1/8 to 1/4 thick slices...break them up and then polish them. I can't talk him into learning to shape them (like cabochons), so using them in settings is a little challenging, but I kind of like the odd shapes. Might be intersting to see if I could use the clay for settings.

I'll check out the web sites you mentioned and if I get brave and try to do something with the clay, I may take you up on your offer to help if I have questions.

Debbie

Date Posted: 12/31/2009 2:20 PM ET
Member Since: 10/22/2009
Posts: 1,891
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wire-wrapped petrified wood would be neat! and different from almost everything else out there.

Date Posted: 12/31/2009 10:46 PM ET
Member Since: 3/21/2009
Posts: 4,812
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Hi,

I'm a novice. Never done this before. I am trying to glue glass, polished stone and plastic beads to marble. Can anyone tell me the best glue to use. I tried hot gluing it and no can do? I also have a picture frame that needs the same kind of work done on it. It's bare wood.

Any advise would be much appreciated.\

 

Elona

Date Posted: 12/31/2009 11:00 PM ET
Member Since: 10/22/2009
Posts: 1,891
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Elona, try E6000. it is what jewelry designers use to glue glass and metal together. sounds like your best bet. 



Last Edited on: 12/31/09 11:00 PM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 1/1/2010 11:53 AM ET
Member Since: 12/9/2009
Posts: 11
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Also try Goop (available at the hardward store).  It's a silicone type glue, and doesn't run.  I prefer it to E6000.  Works for me on everything I've tried.

Yay!  Made a sale on etsy on 1/1/10!  What a treat to start the New Year!  Looking forward to posting here when I catch up with time.  Thanks for the tutorial website advice and am planning to check them out.

Here's to many many sales and inspirations to you in jewelry designing this year ~ Nina, the 'Frugal Artisan'

http://www.prettycheapjewelry.com

Date Posted: 1/1/2010 2:39 PM ET
Member Since: 10/22/2009
Posts: 1,891
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Nina, I may try Goop, thanks. I don't like the smell of E6000 plus the tube always clogs up before I've used up even a quarter of the contents!

Date Posted: 1/4/2010 7:16 PM ET
Member Since: 3/26/2009
Posts: 13
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I'm another jewelry making and craft addict! I do everything from making handmade glass lampworked beads to wire wrapping, seed bead embroidery, polymer clay, silversmithing, etc. You can check out my website at www.beadsnsuch.com. I also sell on ebay, etsy and artfire. I only do the jewelry and bead making part time since I work as a full time materials engineer for a plastics company, but someday I hope to be able to retire early and do the crafting full time. If any of you other crafters have any of the books on my wish list and would like to trade for customer made lampworked beads, let me know. I always love a good trade!

Karen

Date Posted: 1/8/2010 11:08 AM ET
Member Since: 12/31/2009
Posts: 27
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I do jewelry too. I'm currently getting ready to learn wire-wrapping and chaining techniques since so far, all of my projects have been straight fabrication and I can't afford to set up a soldering station or a desktop drill press (yet). I'm avoiding getting into the beadworking, mostly because everyone does it. It's impossible for me to attend a craft fair of any sort without seeing at leat 4 people selling beadwork jewelry and I'd rather do something different and actually get sales instead of compete with everyone else.

Date Posted: 1/8/2010 11:40 AM ET
Member Since: 11/28/2008
Posts: 2,119
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Jan-Chaining techniques sounds interesting to me as well. I've seen pictures of items on the web that are products of these and I really like them. I've never tried using these tehniques.

I just got a wigjig for christmas and I like it a lot more than I thouigth I would. In working with wire, my thinking was ... if I did everthing by hand (but not excluding pliers), then it would be more a product of my own creation, require more skill, be more unique... yada yada yada.  However, trying to get 2 things to match, making smooth curves, and coming up with my own ideas before I have the skills have hampered my progress in producing things I like.

With the wigjig, I have access to tons of patterns. After trying some of them to get an idea of techniques, I was soon able to start coming up with my own ideas. Copying something to me is not much fun or very rewarding, so I have little patience for it. Also, when you finish a piece on the wigjig, you can play with hammers and patinas to add a who new level of creativity.

Debbie     

Date Posted: 1/8/2010 12:11 PM ET
Member Since: 10/22/2009
Posts: 1,891
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you guys hit the mail on the head... gotta do something different or it will never fly! that's why I feature polymer clay pendants in nearly all my necklaces. the beading is just there to support the focal. I also do a lot with resin and that sets what I do apart also. I've been selling for almost 5 years and although I don't make enough money to pay any bills with - I do earn enough to cover all the costs of my materials, tools, craft books. This is a great thing : )

Date Posted: 1/8/2010 2:14 PM ET
Member Since: 12/9/2009
Posts: 11
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Very very good last 3 posts!  Here is a self-evaluation article if you have a minute to read:

http://grungehobbit.com/content/defining-myself-2010

btw, I joined jewelrylessons yesterday!

Subject: Jewelry Making Lessons
Date Posted: 1/12/2010 1:17 PM ET
Member Since: 11/28/2008
Posts: 2,119
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Lori- Thanks so much telling us about the 2 sites:

www.claylessons.com

www.jewelrylessons.com

I've downloaded quite a few of the lessons from the jewelry lesson site that were great. I'm in a rural area and don't easy access to learning from others (none in my area) thru workshops or any means... so this is a great resource.

I checked out the clay lessons site and am getting more interested in this. I love some of the beads that are at that site and I love what you've done as well. This site and a good introductory book might be enough to get me started. Now all I need is the time.

Thanks again,

Debbie

Date Posted: 1/13/2010 5:56 PM ET
Member Since: 10/22/2009
Posts: 1,891
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Debbie, you are so welcome! These sites both have very well-known handcrafted jewelry designers submitting tutorials. if you want to look further into polymer clay, I'd recommend looking at things jkayjewelry has written on the site - she has a lot of excellent info about basics and she is a stickler for details. then of course there is my tutorial (the winged heart) that teaches you how to use resin! I am happy to help so feel free to email me!