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SELLING YOUR JEWELRY: How To Define Your Competitive Advantages

Posted by learntobead on September 22, 2022

What Is A Competitive Advantage?

Your competitive advantage (one or more) is what influences someone to buy something from you rather than one of your competitors. Do you make something of higher quality? Or less cost? Or especially noteworthy. Or use rare materials? What is it that sets you apart, or as Heather Bunker puts it, what is your secret sauce?

Competitive advantage is your ability to outperform your competition. It is you way to design, create, produce, distribute, market and/or sell products and services better than anyone else. It is something that cannot be easily replicated, or, if it is at some point, you can build back better.

There are all types of competitive advantages. Businesses might emphasize one, or several. Some examples of competitive advantages that jewelry design businesses might claim:

1. Authenticity and honesty

2. Rarity

3. Individuality, tailor-made, custom

4. Material quality

5. Technical prowess

6. Access, Location, Visibility

7. Timeliness

8. Special occasions (ready for those …weddings, etc.)

9. Financing, payment plans

10. Innovation

11. Extensive knowledge about materials and techniques

12. Environmentally friendly, sustainable

13. Socio-culturally friendly, sensitive

14. Prominence / reputation of designer

15. Mass quantity production

16. Service Orientation: repairs, custom work, style consultation

17. Pricing, discounts

18. Concurrently maintaining both quality and prices

19. Use of technology

20. Unusual designs

21. Brand loyalty

22. Ownership of copyright

23. Where differences from your competitors, such as different product mix or material use or better craftsmanship, might make you appear superior to them

Why Is Having A Competitive Advantage Important To You?

Competitive advantage is what makes your products and services more desirable to customers than any of your rivals. When you customers recognize these competitive advantages, you are more likely to make sales and more likely to be profitable. You are more likely to grow your business and enjoy greater customer loyalty.

The jewelry design business is very saturated worldwide. On Etsy on any day, there are over 6,000,000 (that’s 6 million) pieces of jewelry for sale. Don’t see this as a defeat. See this as a challenge. Your competitive advantage will help get you that edge, and make you more memorable.

Your competitive advantage is something that you can repeat or allude to in your business name, how you name your jewelry and jewelry lines, your tag line, your elevator pitch, your domain name, your marketing and branding strategies. It might influence how you design your products, distribute them, and put boundaries around your target market.

What Are The Components Underlying Any Competitive Advantage?

You use your competitive advantage as a means of communication. As such, to establish any competitive advantage, you must know 3 things:

1. VALUE PROPOSITION

2. TARGET MARKET

3. COMPETITION

1. Value Proposition

You must clearly identify what attributes of your products or services make them desirable to your customers. What is the value to them? Why does this value motivate them sufficiently to touch, wear, buy and/or collect your jewelry? What things might further get them to show off and talk about your jewelry to their friends, acquaintances and relatives?

2. Target Market

Your advantages will not be seen and understood equally by all people. And you don’t really care about all people. You care specifically about your more narrow market audience or market niche focus. What does your advantage look like to them? Why will it motivate them? What evidence are you using to know this?

You might take the time to ask some of your customers why they buy from you and not your competition?

3. Competition

Your competitive advantage is always in reference to some other business or designer. It is comparative. It differentiates you. It influences a choice of you over others. You competition might be traditional. It might be non-traditional. It might be emerging.

How does your competition look like from your customer’s viewpoint?

How Do You Determine Your Competitive Advantage(s)?

First, think about your strengths.

Second, think about the strengths and weaknesses of your major competitors. These competitors might be in your same geographic location, or they may be online.

Search on Google and Etsy for jewelry makers. How do they present themselves? What qualities do they emphasize? What competitive advantages do they claim? Based on what evidence? How do they link their idea of competitive advantage to their assessments of customer needs, wants and desires?

Last, list what things you are better at than your competitors.

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FOOTNOTES

Bunker, Heather. What Is Your Handmade Business’s Secret Sauce — Or Differentiator? 5/6/2020.

As referenced in:
https://www.heatherbunker.com/post/what-is-your-handmade-businesss-secret-sauce-or-differentiator

Peterdy, Kyle. Competitive Advantage. 8/9/2022.

As referenced in:
https://www.heatherbunker.com/post/what-is-your-handmade-businesss-secret-sauce-or-differentiator

Twin, Alexandra. Competitive Advantage Definition with Types and Examples, Investopedia, 5/22/2022.

As referenced in:
https://www.investopedia.com/terms/c/competitive_advantage.asp

_______________________________

Thank you. I hope you found this article useful.

Also, check out my website (www.warrenfeldjewelry.com).

Enroll in my jewelry design and business of craft Video Tutorials online. Begin with my ORIENTATION TO BEADS & JEWELRY FINDINGS COURSE.

Follow my articles on Medium.com.

Subscribe to my Learn To Bead blog (https://blog.landofodds.com).

Visit Land of Odds online (https://www.landofodds.com)for all your jewelry making supplies.

Check out my Jewelry Making and Beadwork Kits.

Add your name to my email list.

_________________________________

Other Articles of Interest by Warren Feld:

Saying Good-Bye! To Your Jewelry: A Rite Of Passage

The Jewelry Design Philosophy: Not Craft, Not Art, But Design

What Is Jewelry, Really?

The Jewelry Design Philosophy

Creativity: How Do You Get It? How Do You Enhance It?

Disciplinary Literacy and Fluency In Design

Becoming The Bead Artist and Jewelry Designer

5 Essential Questions Every Jewelry Designer Should Have An Answer For

Getting Started / Channeling Your Excitement

Getting Started / Developing Your Passion

Getting Started / Cultivating Your Practice

Becoming One With What Inspires You

Architectural Basics of Jewelry Design

Doubt / Self Doubt: Major Pitfalls For The Jewelry Designer

Techniques and Technologies: Knowing What To Do

Jewelry, Sex and Sexuality

Jewelry Making Materials: Knowing What To Do

Teaching Discplinary Literacy: Strategic Thinking In Jewelry Design

The Jewelry Designer’s Approach To Color

Point, Line, Plane, Shape, Form, Theme: Creating Something Out Of Nothing

The Jewelry Designer’s Path To Resonance

Jewelry Design Principles: Composing, Constructing, Manipulating

Jewelry Design Composition: Playing With Building Blocks Called Design Elements

Contemporary Jewelry Is Not A “Look” — It’s A Way Of Thinking

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SO YOU WANT TO BE A JEWELRY DESIGNER
Merging Your Voice With Form

588pp, many images and diagrams Ebook or Print

PEARL KNOTTING…Warren’s Way
Easy. Simple. No tools. Anyone Can Do!

184pp, many images and diagrams Ebook or Print

SO YOU WANT TO DO CRAFT SHOWS

16 Lessons I Learned Doing Craft Shows

198pp, many images and diagrams Ebook or Print

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Posted in Art or Craft?, bead weaving, beads, beadwork, business of craft, craft shows, Entrepreneurship, jewelry design, jewelry making, pearl knotting, professional development, wire and metal | Tagged: , , , | Leave a Comment »

MARKETING / PROMOTION / POSITIONING: Social Media Marketing For The Jewelry Designer

Posted by learntobead on September 9, 2022

MARKETING / PROMOTION / POSITIONING:
Social Media Marketing For The Jewelry Designer

Social Media Marketing For Very Small Businesses … That Works!

Today’s successful jewelry-designers and other very small business entrepreneurs maintain a very visible presence on the internet. You must have an online way for people to find you and your products. There are many options. These options vary in terms of who controls the site, the costs to be there and update as necessary, and what limitations are imposed on the site or because of how the site operates.

They may have a website that functions simply as a billboard or business card. They may list merchandise on their site, with prices, and information about how to order it. They may present their jewelry on Ebay or other auction houses, or on sites like Etsy or Supadupa. They may let someone else promote their jewelry on-line in exchange for a commission or royalty. They may post images or videos on sites like Instagram and TikTok. They may have a business page on Facebook, Google or Bing. Or they may have a fully functioning shopping cart system on their own dot.com.

Whatever their level of involvement online, they must put into place active and deliberate marketing strategies for creating visibility for their site and their products, and for maintaining and enhancing that visibility over time. It’s all about recruiting and retaining eyeballs, whatever it takes. Take advantage of social medias’ powers for networking.

Digital marketing is not one thing; it is a set of different strategies and pathways for connecting with and influencing people. While initially a lot of what you do will be hit or miss and trial and error, you eventually want to get very organized, developing internet marketing goals, objectives and encapsulating them into a coherent plan. You want to be represented broadly across many platforms, but concentrate your energies narrowly on perhaps 2 platforms only.

You want your website and any web presence to be:

· Optimized for search engines and directories

· Attractive

· Navigate-able and User friendly

· Enticing to first time visitors as well as repeat customers

· As broadly visible and findable as possible

· Broadly bookmarked and linked to

Successful marketing of any kind means:

· Getting Seen

· Getting Known

· Getting Your Competitive Advantage Recognized

· Making the Sale

Make them stop. Make them stay.

To achieve these marketing goals online requires putting into effect various internet marketing strategies, some technical, others not.

Towards this end, I provide insights about the following:

1. Conducting an initial marketing audit of your online presence

2. Optimizing your front door and landing pages

3. Choosing and placing key words and hashtags

4. Optimizing your social profiles

5. Site usability and navigation concerns

6. Intensive site placement and linkages

7. Inexpensive things you can do to get noticed

8. Social media posts marketing

9. On-line advertising

10.Generating an email list and conducting email campaigns

11.Creating visual images and video content

12.Garner online reviews

13.Getting customer feedback

14.Competitor surveillance

15.Establishing baseline site-activity indicators

16.Have a FAQ page which summarizes all your policies and procedures

17.Have a testimonials page

18.Create relationships with online influencers to market your jewelry

You want to choose the right tools and use them in the right way. If the wrong tools, you can waste a lot of time and money and find yourself serving the wrong customers.

1. Conducting An Initial Marketing Audit of Your Online Presence

The first step is to get honest with yourself. How well do your current marketing and business strategies perform, particularly in reference to your online presence? How do they help or hinder you from achieving (a) visibility on the web, (b) credibility on the web, © customer recruitment and retention, and (d) customer responses, reviews and orders from the web?

This auditing activity involve three steps:

1. Assessing current marketing materials, brochures, business cards, stationery, listings, keywords, descriptions, click through ad campaigns, email lists, efforts and activities,

2. Assessing current web-site strengths and weaknesses, from a marketing standpoint, that is, how you are in sync with target customer needs, wants, desires and shopping behaviors, and

3. Setting reasonable and attainable online marketing goals and objectives.

Do all your printed materials reference your website and/or your email address?

Is this information prominent and readily accessible, or is it buried?

Does it convey a sense of pride in your online efforts, or shame and embarrassment?

Do you routinely mention your website to your customers or clients?

Do all your emails end with a business signature, that includes your business name, address, phone, fax, and email?

Does your website clearly and concisely express what your business is all about, and how to contact you — particularly in terms of the information on the front page, any other landing pages, near the top, that would appear in the first screen that your customer would see?

Is your navigation bar/system/strategy easy to manipulate by any customer?

Is each link labeled clearly and strategically?

Does the set of all your links clearly and easily get your customer to each section of your website?

Have you minimized the number of links it takes to get to any one of your product pages?

Is your front page indexable by search engine robots?

Is there sufficient information on this page to index?

Is the organization of keywords on your front page presented to your advantage, or disadvantage, given search engine indexing schemes?

Does your front page load relatively quickly?

Have you kept your graphics on your front page to a reasonable amount so they don’t slow down page loading or obscure any keyword information?

Does your website have the kinds of things that will encourage customers to remain on your site more than a few seconds?

Is it relatively easy to keep your website up-to-date, such as changing information, uploading new images, creating new layouts?

Is your website responsive — that is, will load and be easily readable on any browser and any device, no matter screen size or preset layout parameters?

Now, GOOGLE YOURSELF. This way you have a starting point for how visible you are on the internet.

2. Optimizing Your Front Door and Landing Pages

Your front door page (or any landing page) is your most strategic website asset. It should be optimized in form and content so that it anticipates the indexing and ranking schemes (algorithms) of the major search engines. While these schemes get altered on a regular basis, there are some pointers which will be generally helpful all the time.

1. Don’t use frames. Try to use DIV instead of TABLE html commands. Try to use a CSS style sheet along with HTML5 (or most recent version) coding. Make your webpage responsive, so that it will load up perfectly no matter the browser or screen size of the device.

2. Don’t use a visually wonderful, but indexability awful splash page. You should settle for a slightly less visually appealing page, as a tradeoff for making it more indexable and rank-able.

3. You are selling things. The average person will have the average computer system or cell phone setup. That means, you can’t use the most up-to-date, exciting website technology available. Your pages won’t load up for everyone, some may take too long to load up, and some may even lock up your device. Save the best-of-current-tech for your personal home page.

4. If you are using a template-based host’s WYSIWYG (what you see is what you get) website design editor, be sure the final result will be responsive. Also be sure your website will be easy to update and maintain.

5. TITLE: Your title should be about 9 words (not more, not less), with your most important key word first. Don’t repeat the same word twice in a row; separate it by another word. Use lower case letters for your key words.

For example: “beads, jewelry findings, beading supplies — Land of Odds” is better than “Land of Odds — beads, jewelry findings, beading supplies”. [Most important keyword is first.]

For example: “beads, jewelry findings, beading supplies” is better than “Beads, beading supplies, jewelry findings.” [Here bead is capitalized once, and appears as what would be judged as twice in a row.]

6. FIRST TEXT LINE: Your first line of the page (and this will appear after the BODY tag if you are hand coding), should be about 10 words, again repeating your major keywords, not putting the same word twice next to each other, and listing the words from most to least important. Never start the page with a TABLE or Graphic file. Start with words.

7. LINK AND PAGE NAMES: Be strategic in the names you give your active links and webpages. Use your keywords in these LINK DESCRIPTIONS (link-text) and URL ADDRESSES (url-text).

For example: Call your gemstone necklace page “gemstonenecklace.htm” rather than something like “AC402.htm”.

In creating the link descriptions on your page, write something like “Gemstone Necklaces” rather than “Products Page”.

8. PARAGRAPHS: Have about 3 paragraphs of text on your front-door page. Each paragraph might have 3 or so sentences.

Your major keywords should appear in this pattern:

– At the top of paragraph #1

– In the middle of paragraph #2

– Not at all in paragraph #3

If you don’t like the look of all those words on your front door page, you can always put the paragraphs at the bottom of your webpage.

9. IMAGES: For all your images, use the ALT tag. For the ALT tag, use your keywords to describe the image. By using the ALT tag, when someone places the cursor over the image, a yellow box will appear with the ALT tag words appearing. These are also very indexable.

Make your original images into .jpg or .tif or .gif files. The original images should be a minimum of 500 x 500 pixels and 72–96 dpi resolution. Within your webpage, you can adjust image sizes. Preference for using the percent (%) adjustment rather than setting particular pixel width and height sizes.

10.HEADINGS: Set up 2 or 3 heading on your front door page, and use your keywords in the heading text. Sometimes what you code as a heading is the first thing indexed, and sometimes the only thing indexed. On subsequent pages, use more headings, if these make sense for the page.

11.COMMENT TAGS: Put in at least one COMMENT tag using your keywords. In the HTML code, comments start with <! — and end with → . COMMENT tags cannot be seen on your page. They are hidden within the code. There is a 1000 character limit to COMMENT tags. Words in COMMENT tags are very indexable.

12.DOMAIN NAME: If you haven’t already selected a website domain name, you might try to create one using your most important keyword in the URL-text. There are many sites online that sell domain names. Compare their prices which can be all over the place. Compare the amount of space they offer you, any email limits, and whether you can add a shopping cart.
For example, “beadsatlandofodds.com” would do far better than “landofodds.com” in search engine indexing.

You can also envision having more than one front-door or landing page for your website. You might have different kinds of customers, and may want to set up an entrance very tailored to each of them. From the search engine’s standpoint, they do not like to see virtually the same page used more than once. You will lose points here if this is your approach. But you can set up differently designed pages as front entrances, and based on how you get your site listed, you can use any of these as the link-reference point.

3. Choosing and Placing Key Words and Hash Tags

Generate a keyword list of 1000 characters. You can use a word processing program like WORD, which has a character counter. In this list, you would include variations on upper case and lower case spellings, as well as common misspellings.

Think about the words and phrases your customers might use to find you, to understand what you do as a jewelry designer, and how your jewelry will satisfy their needs and desires.

To research keywords, you can go to various search engines, plug in the major keywords you’re interested in, and check out what keywords other sites which pop up in the search engines search, have used. On each site’s front door page, review what words they see to use on this page. Also, you can use the browser’s VIEW button to bring up the Source Code image of a page, and check out what keywords other people have listed in their META TAGS (which are otherwise hidden from view). You can use Google’s ad words program to generate keyword lists.

Hash Tags

A hashtag is a word or keyword phrase preceded by a hash symbol (#). It’s used within a post on social media to help those who may be interested in your topic to be able to find it when they search for a keyword or particular hashtag. It helps to draw attention to your posts and encourage interaction.

If you are using a phrase, do not put spaces between the words.

You want to use hashtags that you think people will search on.

You don’t want to be too general and you don’t want to be too obscure. You can check out what influencers in your area of interest are using on their posts.

RiteTag (https://ritetag.com) : Get instant hashtag recommendations.

You should, if possible, include a branded hashtag, such as #yourname#yourbusinessname, or #nameoflineofjewelry .

Different social media platforms have different expectations for the number of hashtags they view as optimal. Use that number, not more or less, if you can.

Facebook (1 to 2 at most)

LinkedIn (1 to 3 at most; place them within the body of your post, rather than at the end)

Instagram (10 or 11 is best, but you can use up to 30 hashtags)

Tik Tok (100 characters maximum)

Pinterest (1 or 2 at most)

I would suggest using hashtags in all your posts.

4. Optimizing Your Social Profiles

In various social media sites, directories and other places you list your business, you want to have a great, professional social profile about yourself. Think about…

Username: This is the identity of your business in one simple or compound word. If you have the opportunity to verify your name within any site, do so. This builds trust.

Biography: You want a short introduction to yourself and your business. [Refer to your Getting Started Story in an earlier chapter.] List important information about yourself and your business. Tell the reader how you and your design work solved problems for them. Establish some indicators of credibility and legitimacy. Make your business sound approachable.

Photos: Get a good headshot of yourself and another shot of your working at making jewelry. Get another image that defines your business, such as store front, store displays, or a group of employees serving customers. Last take some appealing images of some of the pieces you make and which represent your brand or style. Include photos showing someone wearing your pieces. Photos should be in .jpg format, 500×500 pixels minimum size, and 300dpi (for print) and 72–96dpi (for screen).

Headline or Tag Line: Usually you have an opportunity to add a short line of text after your name or the name of your business. 7–9 words is good. This line should suggest your keywords and hashtag words. This line should be catchy. Test out a few examples and see which ones get the best reactions.

Content: A lot of informative content on your profiles is always a plus. Research what other jewelry designers are posting on blogs and on Facebook for ideas.

When you update your social profile, let all your followers know. This is a good way to keep them engaged with your business.

5. Site Usability and Navigation Concerns

How usable is your website to:

– New customers

– Returning customers

Websites need very clear Navigation systems.

Websites need strategies to keep them from becoming boring. After someone visits a site a few times, and it only takes a few times, the sites become stale and boring to them.

Websites need all your contact information — address, phone, fax, email — right on your first page. Or at least a very visible link/button to CONTACT INFORMATION. Don’t make your customers hunt for contact information.

Navigation System

There is a series of research about the Magical Number 7 plus or minus 3. When people are confronted with 7 or more choices, they psychologically need to re-categorize them, such as into one group of 3 and another group of 4, in order to deal with all this information. Otherwise they get paralyzed and stumped. People can easily handle 4 pieces (7 minus 3) of information, but start to get uncomfortable with 7 pieces, and can also be forced to deal with 10 separate pieces (7 plus 3) information, but that’s pushing it.

From a website design standpoint, you do not want to make someone have to travel more than 4 links to get to the product information they want. As the required number of links to click on gets greater than 4 clicks, your customers will begin to get paralyzed, and not make the next click. Wherever you find you have more than 4 clicks to get to a product, you can re-categorize, so you have fewer links to navigate.

For example, suppose it takes 5 clicks to get from your section on Jewelry to your section on Amethyst Beaded Necklaces:

PRODUCTS — click 1 to — JEWELRY — click 2 to — NECKLACES — click 3 to — BEADED NECKLACES — click 4 to — GEMSTONE BEADED NECKLACES — click 5 to — AMETHYST BEADED NECKLACES.

You might reduce the number of clicks the customer has to travel by reducing the number of webpages they have to traverse:

PRODUCTS/JEWELRY — click 1 to — NECKLACES/BEADED NECKLACES — click 2 to — GEMSTONE BEADED NECKLACES/AMETHYST.

On the PRODUCTS page, you list all your types of products. On your NECKLACES page, you list all your types of necklaces. On your GEMSTONE BEADED NECKLACES page, you list all the types of gemstones.

Avoiding Boredom

Websites get stale fast. Unfortunately, to keep things re-designed and very fresh takes a lot of time and effort. So, you want to come up with some simple, less time-consuming tricks that you can do to keep your website appearing fresh.

One trick is to put something on the page that moves. Build in some kind of “movement” on your front-door page. You can use a .gif animation file, or create mouse-overs and other simple fun things which move using Javascripts.

Another trick is to create a sense of Interactivity — forms, polls, message boards, chat lines, email sign-up, email link, contests, games, ezines, links/resources page listing other sites of interest.

A third trick is to run specials and/or have a What’s New section.

Contact Information

Preferably on the first page, include your address, email, phone, fax, and other important identifying contact information.

If you have a separate CONTACT PAGE, be sure that the link/button to the page is prominently displayed at the top of your front door page.

If you use a CONTACT FORM, I think it is also helpful to list your email address on this same page, as well. If concerned about robots collecting email addresses off websites to use in spam, you can write you email address like this: warren (@) landofodds (dot) com .

Many of your regular customers or clients will begin to use your website like a rolodex entry. Make it easy for them.

Caution: many anti-spam programs reject emails that begin with Info, Contact, Shop and other very generic terms.

6. Intensive Site Placement and Linkages

It is important that you get listed with all the major search engines, directories and social media sites, as well as specialty directories associated with your specific business.

To make this process go as quickly as possible, it is important to have all your information together in one place, where you can cut and paste the information into the online forms, as requested.

Type out your landing page URL as http://www.mysite.com . If you are using a shopping cart system, your URL will most likely start as https://www.mysite.com .

Type out your email contact address: warren@landofodds.com

Besides having about 12–20 of your most important keywords or keyword phrases handy, also have about 12 hashtags ready. You will also want to create 25-word, 50-word, 100-word and 200-word descriptions of your site, heavy on keywords, but no side-by-side keyword repetitions. One more thing: have a 7 to 9-word part description / part tag line for your business. Make this catchy.

Do NOT pay for or use any of the multiple submission services. Take the time to submit your site to each search engine and directory, one at a time. A site submitted through a multiple submission service can get assigned a low ranking by the search engines.

You can use Yahoo or Google or Bing to find specialized directories. Get listed in as many as these as possible.

Many search engines and some directories now charge you for a listing, either as a flat fee, or as a click-through rate. You may not be able to afford all the opportunities, but you might want to follow through on the major ones.

Some search engines will let you buy key words. When someone searches on a keyword, a link to your site will appear. If someone clicks through on that link, you’re charged a per click fee. Google ad words and Facebook ads work this way.

Also, link up with web-rings, web-malls, and other affinity arrangements online. You might create your own affinity arrangement with others businesses you know.

Social media sites, newsgroups, forums, and message boards are great places to get visibility. While you usually can’t put a blatantly commercial post on these, you can (a) respond to existing posts, and put your business signature information at the end of your post, (b) suggest a jewelry-making tip, or other similar tip, and add your business signature information to the end of your post, and © and similar things.

There are many sites which list local resources. Get listed. Facebook’s Graph Search allows you to search for businesses both by location as well as friend’s recommendations. It shows you which businesses your friends have frequented. Yelp and Trip Advisor are critical for local businesses.

You can do a search on the URL web-address of your competitors, as well as on their names, to see where they are listed.

Some of your suppliers may list you on their websites. Some of your customers or clients may list you on their websites.

To get a high ranking, search engines do three things:

a) CATEGORIZE your site in relation to certain keywords, by indexing words on your site,

b) RATE your link-popularity, by checking how often someone clicks on a link to your site, and

c) RANK the link-relevancy of your site based on how long the person stays on your site, once they’ve clicked on their way there.

So, the more places that maintain a link to your website, the more likely someone is to click through to it. The better designed your website is, the more likely someone is to hang around awhile. The better indexed you are (called SEO optimization), the more visible you are in any search.

7. Inexpensive Things You Can Do To Get Noticed

There are many low-cost or free things you can do to increase your visibility online. Some suggestions:

a. Get reciprocal links — “I’ll list you if you list me.” There are your friends and personal associates; other similar businesses; affinity sites such as shopping malls, specialized directories, awards programs.

b. Create educational and information content. Share it with other sites in exchange for a link back to your site. In fact, there are Free Content sites online that act as a repository and exchange for free content articles. Submit your articles there.

c. Respond to people’s questions in forums, newsgroups, message boards, reviews and the like. Start each of your responses by repeating their first name. Include a business signature with a link back to your site at the end of your response.

d. Write articles for online ezines, newsgroups, forums, specialized portals and the like.

e. Join affinity groups.

f. Include a lot of explanatory and how-to information next to each of your products.

g. Run a contest.

h. Set up a group and form your own community within one or more of the social media sites.

i. Set up a business page on one or more of the social media sites, as well as the major search engines such as Google and Bing.

j. Create your own online newsletter.

k. Post images on all the social media sites.

l. Post short videos to You Tube, as well as other social media sites, particularly Instagram and Tik Tok. Videos will generate more interest than images.

m. Create a blog. Keep it active. You can also use micro-blogging posts to lesson your workload. Micro blog posts are short links to other websites or posts online you find of interest. Here you make a statement about why the reader should pay attention to this link. Write the link. Suggest that the reader come back to your blog and offer some feedback.

n. Create an email campaign for your email-opt-in customers.

o. Send birthday wishes to your followers; include an image of your jewelry; tag the follower.

p. Create both business and personal profile pages on various social media sites.

q. Run promotions and discount offers.

r. Bundle 2 or more pieces of jewelry and run a promotion.

s. Shine a spotlight on your employees.

t. Show off your space.

u. Run a contest.

v. Re-share content from other sites.

w. Recognize loyalty; feature your super customers in blog posts or posts on social media channels; give them first access to new products; create a brand loyalty program.

x. Invite customers to react to and test out new ideas before you implement them.

y. Reward referrals.

z. On social media, position yourself as a subject matter expert.

aa. Use social media to find cross-promotional partners.

One thing I do NOT recommend is to send mass e-mailings where your target audience has not previously opted in to receive emails from you. Mass e-mailings generate a lot of positive responses, but they generate a lot of negative responses, as well, from people overwhelmed with spam.

There will always be new tools every year to take advantage of. Sharing text, image, video and audio will always remain in style.

However, you decide to attract attention and increase your visibility, you will pay with either your time or your money. At first, you will probably take a shot-gun approach — that is, trying everything. But in the interests of time and money, you will want to narrow your efforts.

8. Social Media Posts Marketing

Post everywhere. React to other people’s posts. Answer queries. Suggest how-to solutions. Include an image with your post, 1–3 hashtags, and a link back to your website or online presence.

Create a presence on all social media sites, and post to them all. However, select 2 of them to concentrate your marketing efforts.

Things which improve responses to posts: touches of humor, quality of information, your excitement, something weird, something the evokes an emotional response, a feeling of connection.

Keep your posts short. Yes, you are marketing yourself and your designs, but more subtly. You do not want to sound salesy.

Engage your viewer. For example, ask “Which of these 3 is your favorite?” or “A and B are perfect together — Agree?”.

If at all possible, end each post with either a CALL TO ACTION or a TAKE-AWAY / LESSONS LEARNED.

Share photos of events. Share photos of what’s new?

If someone responds to your post, respond back to them. At a minimum, thank them for their post. Remember to cite their first names in your responses.

Pay attention to the number of responses you get, and whether you get more or fewer responses depending on the site, the day of the week or the time of the day.

Plan to make posts on a regular basis. You might plan to use the same posts on different media sites. If using the same post for placement on the same social media site, say in several interest groups on that site, try to limit the same post to, in this example, 3 interest groups.

Instagram has been especially useful, productive and responsive to jewelry maker posts. With Instagram, I suggest planning to post at least once every single day. Remember that those captions are important and you want to make them clever or very personal in some way.

Quality will matter more than quantity.

9. Online Advertising

There are many opportunities for online advertising. For each opportunity, you want to carefully think through the costs and benefits. How many impressions (# of eyeballs) will your ad achieve? For each impression, how many of those people will follow through (click-thru rate) and link to your site? What words, keywords, terms seem to influence people to click-thru more often? What is a reasonable cost per click through?

The first types of advertising you should do are the basic, cheap and obvious. Include your website address and/or email address on your stationery, business cards, business checks, brochures, other handouts.

You add some marketing highlights, address and email as your “signature” for all the emails you send.

You might send out a Press release to your local papers and magazines, or to regional and national publications pertinent to your business. You will want to approach them with a good angle, that you think would be of interest to their readers.

Many search engines, like Google, directories and social media sites sell keywords. You pay a certain amount of money for each click thru to your site. You can set a limit to how much you want to spend each month. It could be as low as a few dollars, or as high as you want to go. When one of their visitors does a search on the particular keyword (or keyword phrase), your name appears with the search results, with a clickable link back to your site. You pay when someone clicks on that link and visits your site. Using a keyword phrase of 2 or more words, rather than a single word keyword will narrow your target audience, but at the same time increase the chances one of these people will click through.

Instead of using keywords, you might also be able to target customers by demographic data, such as age, gender, and geographic location.

You might purchase a banner ad to place on other people’s sites.

You can also purchase ad space or sponsorship listings on various online ezines, magazine and websites.

You can place classified ads. Many search engines have classified sections. There are many specialized websites hosting classified ads.

In a similar way, you can post several of your products on Ebay or other auction sites. Marketing on Ebay is very similar to taking out an ad, but probably more effective.

Note: Social media sites and search engines tend to favor paid posts and ads. These sites probably have applications which help you narrow your target audience, thus maximizing your costs-per-click-thru.

10. Generating An Email List and Conducting Email Campaigns

It is critical to generate an email list of customers. You want them to very formally and visibly opt-in to the list. You can generate sign-up sheets, online forms, and the like towards this end.

You can run your own campaigns, or use an email client like MAILCHIMP (https://mailchimp.com ) or CONSTANT CONTACT (www.constantcontact.com ).

You can segment your email list into smaller, targeted groups.

A monthly contact is reasonable.

Caution: many anti-spam programs reject emails that begin with Info, Contact, Shop and other very generic terms.

11. Creating Visual Images and Video Content

Images: Images get better responses than text. Make your original images into .jpg or .tif or .gif files. The original images should be a minimum of 500 x 500 pixels and 72–96 dpi resolution. Within your webpage, you can adjust image sizes. Preference for using the percent (%) adjustment rather than setting particular pixel width and height sizes.

Show images of your finished pieces. Of you at working making things. Of someone wearing your pieces. Of the inspirations for your pieces. Of works in progress. Of close-up details of your pieces.

Encourage customers to share images of them wearing your jewelry.

Create a slide show of a series of images to tell a story.

Infographics generate lots of discussion.

Write captions for all your images. Don’t just tell them what the image is. Tell them how and why what is photographed will be important to them. Try to use humor and irony. Make the captions authentic. Bring out your personality in the captions. For example: “The bracelet you always wanted to go with that blue dress,” or, “One of a kind necklace which will no longer be available after the 1st.”

More examples:

“My color-picking frustrations paid off this time!”

“Need to finish this ASAP. Didn’t even take the time to brush my hair today!”

“So tribal … What do you think?”

“I think I’ve made a necklace to match the picture I hung in my room. Didn’t even think about that. Or did I?”

“I made all this jewelry today, and now have to leave it to do some vacuuming. I can’t stop looking at it though.”

Videos: Videos are the best way to get attention on the internet. They catch the eye. They can convey emotions. They make demonstrations easy to follow.

There are many formats. The safest one to use is MP4. When you upload to a site, like You Tube, the sites convert your video to their format. Consider purchasing video editing software. For the most part, keep your videos short — either the 1–3 minute version or the 10–20 minute version.

Each social media platform has its own rules and pros and cons for hosting videos. Check out: Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest, You Tube, Twitter, LinkedIn, Tik Tok, Snapchat. Most require a screen resolution of 1920 x1080 pixels, and a widescreen (16:9) format. You would set up a page or channel on each site. It’s a good idea to create a short introduction video explaining what your page or channel is all about.

You Tube: Host all your videos. On You Tube, you can also live stream video. This is useful to make spot announcements, present new products, and the like. Videos available to everyone. People most often look for “how-to”, “demonstrations”, “product reviews.”

Facebook: Videos can only be seen by your friends and followers. People on this site want videos that are entertaining or inspirational. 85% of viewers watch the videos with the sound off. Video size recommended is 1280×720 pixels.

LinkedIn: People like career-oriented videos as well as corporate and business promotions and interviews and conference broadcasts.

Twitter: Videos are very, very short. Usually off-the-cuff remarks shared by cell phone.

Instagram: Videos are square by default. Optimal size: 1080 x 1350 pixels. You want your videos to tell a story, with a beginning, middle, climax, denouement and conclusion.

Pinterest: Similar to You Tube.

Tik Tok: The standard video length is 3 minutes, though you can go up to 10 minutes. Sound is essential. The orientation is vertical, so you want the size of your video to be 1080 x 1920 pixels.

Pointers:

· Keep the viewer in mind. Aim to meet their needs, whether seeking to solve problems, learn something, be entertained, or be inspired.

· In the first 5–10 seconds, be sure the video content is an attention-grabber with a solid hook. Get your name out and your purpose out. Viewership drops dramatically after 10 seconds.

· Make the video mobile-friendly. Make any text large enough to be seen on a small cell phone screen. Make sure there is good contrast between text and the background it is imposed on.

· Always add either a CALL TO ACTION or a TAKE AWAY / LESSONS LEARNED before the video ends.

· Add captions to your video throughout because many people view videos with the sound off.

· Embed all your posted videos on your own website as well.

12. Garner Online Reviews

Online reviews will always be important.

I widely post links throughout my online pages and emails to the various review sites like Google, Yelp, Facebook and Travel Advisor. Periodically I send out an email to my customer list asking them to post a review.

Respond to every single post, positive or negative. Always begin your responses by writing the reviewer’s first name. Real and authentic responses, rather than canned responses, keep the conversation going and allow you to glean more valuable insights from your customers.

Occasionally the reviews might be negative. I know it’s difficult not to take negative comments personally, but it’s only personal if you allow them to be. Still, even negative comments are opportunities for dialog. Respond to them in a sensitive, understanding way, perhaps suggesting something like, (a) a future discount or reward, or, (b) being grateful for calling something to your attention — that this will change your behavior in the future. Thank them for their review.

One contributing factor to a higher search engine ranking is the number of positive reviews for your site.

Make sure you have set up business profiles on Google and Bing so that your customers can see the reviews posted on either search engine site.

13. Getting Customer Feedback

It is important to get customer feedback about your website, your marketing efforts and your products/product mix. Regularly connecting with customers will help you retain them. It will help you keep their information updated. Asking for feedback will get them more invested in your business. It will help you uncover any customer issues which need to be resolved.

When people email or call you, you might ask some evaluative questions of them, while you have their attention. Also ask them how they found you originally.

You can set up a free poll or survey online. There are many websites that offer free online polls and surveys.

Ask your customers for leads.

14. Competitor Surveillance

The internet provides myriad opportunities for you to view your competitors’ marketing strategies. You can analyze specific competitors you know of in your immediate environment. Or you can focus on 3–5 competitors that are prominent in your business.

Think about what they are doing and their performance relative to what you are doing and your performance.

In the search engine locator box, you can:

– Type a keyword, and look more closely at the first 3–5 competitors whose websites pop up

– Type in the name of a specific competitor, and see which websites mention their name

– Type in the URL address of a specific competitor and see which websites maintain active links to them, or have reviews of them

You can:

– Analyze their website and product line

– Determine what keywords are important to them

– Find out who lists them and links to them

– Check their visibility and rankings

What is their business model?

What assumptions do they make about the market for their products?

Where do they think their customers are?

How do they think their customers will find them?

Where do they advertise?

What is their product mix?

What kinds of pricing strategies have they put into action?

Listening tools (from LinkedIn Share): Some online sites which help you monitor competitors, blogs, comments, videos, tips and the like:

Bing: Internet Search

Commentful: Monitors comments on blog postings

BlogPulse: Identifies daily blog post patterns

Complete Blog: Monitors how people use the internet

Cotweet: Monitors discussions about businesses and their brands on Twitter and Facebook

Digg: Members vote on which web content should be shared

Feedky: Scans and indexes video websites

FourWhere: Finds tips and comments on Yelp, Foursquare and Gowalla.

Google News: Highlights news items about businesses and brands

HootSuite: Customized analytics relative to various social media sites

Klout: Rates and ranks brands based on engagement levels in various social media sites

OpenBook: Searches real-time posts in Facebook

SamePoint: Enables you to connect your business to various social media sites

Sideline: Topic search application for Yahoo

Technorati: measures particular position and influence of any website

Trackur: Lets you watch your reputation, mentions, and promotional campaigns

Trendpedia: Monitors social media sites and what people are saying about you and your brand

UserrnameCheck: Find where your username has been registered

Website Grader: Measures the marketing effectiveness of your website

Yahoo Pipes: Helps you aggregate information from all over the internet

15. Establishing Baseline Site-Activity Indicators

It is important to track the activity on your website, and to try to gauge whether this activity level is affected by any marketing effort you might launch.

There should be a statistics package that comes with your website. You can also link to Google Analytics or other available statistical packages online.

From this information, you should gather the following stats:

· # of unique visitors

· Average visitors per day

· Average length on site per vistor

· # of sales per week

· Average doll per sale

· Percent of unique visitors resulting in actual orders

· # of abandoned shopping carts

NOTE: You can easily find out similar information for all your competitors using many apps available online for this purpose.

16. Have a FAQ page which summarizes all your policies and procedures

Create one page, called a FAQ page, which summarizes those policies and procedures relevant to your customer base. Anticipate the kinds of questions your customers will ask you, and provide the answers here.

So, at the least, your customers will ask about:

· Ordering procedures

· Turnaround times

· Shipping time and costs

· Customization

· What to do about lost or damaged merchandise

· Repairs

· Returns and exchanges

· Backorders

· Copyrights, Trademarks

· Disclaimers

· Lead content or other information about materials

· Gift certificates

· Discounts

· Minimum orders

· Exchanging links

· International orders

· Security of site for online payments

· Other payment methods

· Sales taxes

· Wholesale orders or arrangements

17. Have a testimonials page (also can include pages for Press Articles, List of Retailers Who Sell Your Jewelry, Upcoming Events)

Periodically, gather testimonials from your customers who have purchased your product. Set up a webpage listing all these testimonials.

18. Create relationships with online influencers to market your jewelry

There are many people online that function as influencers. Many will market and promote your products in exchange for something. Sometimes this is money. Sometimes this is product. Sometimes this is some other reciprocal arrangement. [See chapter on INFLUENCERS for more details.]

They might share images of your jewelry. They might wear it. They will create a buzz for it.

Start by creating a relationship with an influencer who is relevant to your product line. Follow them everywhere. Interact with their posts. Show that you are interested in what they have to say.

Then pitch a collaboration.

______________

FOOTNOTES

Amin, Arshad. 16 Social Media Optimization Tips You Need To Know, medium.com, 1/18/22.

As referenced in:
https://arshad-digital.medium.com/16-social-media-optimization-tips-you-need-to-know-1a66c20b4564

Gillespie, Chris. The Ultimate Social Media Video Guide. 8/4/2021.

As referenced in:
https://www.vidyard.com/blog/social-media-video/

Hill, Andrea. When Marketing, Be Clear Who You Want To Reach and What You Want To Sell. Digital Marketing Decisions, 2/11/2021

As referenced in:
https://instoremag.com/when-marketing-be-clear-who-you-want-to-reach-and-what-you-want-to-sell/?oly_enc_id=8486A9291356F6C

Less Everything. Unconventional Marketing With No Money, Chapter 5: Business Guide: Run Your Business. Don’t Let Your Business Run You.

As referenced in:
http://lesseverything.com/business-advice/unconventional-marketing/

Main, Kelly. 18 Jewelry Marketing Ideas to Drive Sales Without Spending a Fortune, 12/13/2021.

As referenced in:
https://fitsmallbusiness.com/jewelry-marketing-ideas/

_______________________________

Thank you. I hope you found this article useful.

Also, check out my website (www.warrenfeldjewelry.com).

Enroll in my jewelry design and business of craft Video Tutorials online. Begin with my ORIENTATION TO BEADS & JEWELRY FINDINGS COURSE.

Follow my articles on Medium.com.

Subscribe to my Learn To Bead blog (https://blog.landofodds.com).

Visit Land of Odds online (https://www.landofodds.com)for all your jewelry making supplies.

Check out my Jewelry Making and Beadwork Kits.

Add your name to my email list.

_________________________________

Other Articles of Interest by Warren Feld:

Saying Good-Bye! To Your Jewelry: A Rite Of Passage

The Jewelry Design Philosophy: Not Craft, Not Art, But Design

What Is Jewelry, Really?

The Jewelry Design Philosophy

Creativity: How Do You Get It? How Do You Enhance It?

Disciplinary Literacy and Fluency In Design

Becoming The Bead Artist and Jewelry Designer

5 Essential Questions Every Jewelry Designer Should Have An Answer For

Getting Started / Channeling Your Excitement

Getting Started / Developing Your Passion

Getting Started / Cultivating Your Practice

Becoming One With What Inspires You

Architectural Basics of Jewelry Design

Doubt / Self Doubt: Major Pitfalls For The Jewelry Designer

Techniques and Technologies: Knowing What To Do

Jewelry, Sex and Sexuality

Jewelry Making Materials: Knowing What To Do

Teaching Discplinary Literacy: Strategic Thinking In Jewelry Design

The Jewelry Designer’s Approach To Color

Point, Line, Plane, Shape, Form, Theme: Creating Something Out Of Nothing

The Jewelry Designer’s Path To Resonance

Jewelry Design Principles: Composing, Constructing, Manipulating

Jewelry Design Composition: Playing With Building Blocks Called Design Elements

Contemporary Jewelry Is Not A “Look” — It’s A Way Of Thinking

__________________________________

SO YOU WANT TO BE A JEWELRY DESIGNER
Merging Your Voice With Form

588pp, many images and diagrams Ebook or Print

PEARL KNOTTING…Warren’s Way
Easy. Simple. No tools. Anyone Can Do!

184pp, many images and diagrams Ebook or Print

SO YOU WANT TO DO CRAFT SHOWS

16 Lessons I Learned Doing Craft Shows

198pp, many images and diagrams Ebook or Print

___________________________________________

Posted in bead weaving, beads, beadwork, business of craft, craft shows, jewelry design, jewelry making, Learn To Bead, pearl knotting, wire and metal | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

MARKETING / PROMOTION / POSITIONING:

Posted by learntobead on September 4, 2022

About Marketing Strategies For Jewelry Designers

Abstract:

As a marketer, you will be developing and organizing a series of communication strategies and tactics. You will also be combining things into coherent marketing campaigns with defined goals and methods for collecting evidence from which you can evaluate success. This article discusses the importance of spreading word-of-mouth and some ideas towards this end. Also discussed are some additional marketing ideas workable for the designer.

Marketing Strategies

As a marketer, you will be developing and organizing a series of communication strategies and tactics. You will also be combining things into coherent marketing campaigns with defined goals and methods for collecting evidence from which you can evaluate success.

Your strategies will hone in on the 4 P’s: product, price, promotion and place.

· Product: serves a need not being met or provides a novel experience

· Price: set a fair price both to you as well as your customer

· Promotion: your marketing message and how you get the word out

· Place: where your product is available and your distribution arrangements

Whatever marketing strategies and tactics you resort to, remember this.

· You need to be different and refreshing.

· You need to do something your target audience(s) will talk about.

· You need to make your product approachable, accessible, and memorable.

· You need to enhance the emotional connection among client, product and designer.

· You need to be patient and focused.

· You need to be creative.

· You need to be authentic.

· You need to be market-driven, not product-driven. [It might be a great product, but there needs to be a market for it.]

Some marketing tasks you will direct and take charge of yourself. With some, you will work with an agency and turn over responsibility to them. You might rely on online influencers and bloggers. Some things will be in print. Some will be images and/or posts online. Some will be messages to your email followers. You might coordinate your marketing with similar or complimentary products of other businesses (called co-marketing). You might donate items to organizations which will publicize your donations. You will have business cards, brochures, jewelry name cards, guest books, packaging, letterhead stationery, websites, domain names. You might be able to get articles written about you or invitations to participate in podcasts.

You will find that, with jewelry, you will need to use a multi-method approach to your marketing. Any one particular approach won’t be sufficient to reach enough potential clients and influence enough buying decisions to keep you in business.

The Importance of Word of Mouth:
The Biggest Source of New Customers

If your client has had a positive experience with you and your products, it is highly likely they will share this with someone else. This is called word of mouth. Word of mouth might result from a conversation. It might result from an online or print review. It might be generated from comments to an online post. It might be a mention in an article. Word of mouth usually accounts for 3 of every 4 jewelry sales in the United States.

Things which drive word of mouth:

· Thanking your customer

· Asking your customer if they get compliments on your pieces they wear, and if so, can they mention that in a review or post online

· Ask your customers to talk about you, such as mentioning you on Facebook.

· Offer a discount to a customer who refers another to you.

· Image and Video posts on Instagram and other social media sites, and concurrently responding to all LIKES and COMMENTS. Note: Always repeating the person’s first name in our response comments.

· Join social media sites groups, and comment on various posts.

· Hold a customer appreciation event.

· Do some co-marketing with similar businesses in town.

· Follow-up on sales to make sure customers are happy.

· Bring a friend campaign.

· Give out business cards.

· Show something special to clients which I know they will want to tell others about.

· In-store giveaways.

· Be involved in the community.

· Supporting nonprofit fund-raising events, usually by offering a gift certificate or a showy piece of jewelry

· Create how-to handouts and/or post videos online (or other educational content) you can give to customers for free.

Some Marketing Ideas

1. Educate with your content

2. Personalize your marketing messages

3. Be data driven

4. Keep your messages and content updated

5. Be visible in your community and online

6. Manage active and frequent email campaigns, along with implementing strategies to expand your email list

7. Rely on credible influencers

8. Concentrate on one, perhaps two, social networks only, and give it your all

9. Create opt-in offers

10. End all your marketing and promotional messages with a call to action

11. Be a strategic user of key works in webpage designs and promotions

12. Teach

13. Do repairs

14. Survey, listen and learn

15. Sponsor a charitable event

16. Donate products or services to a charity event

17. Co-market with other small businesses

18. Do presentations or webinars to enable your audience to get to know, like and trust you

19. Provide free consultations or demonstrations

20. Write articles

21. Build a website optimized for search

______________

FOOTNOTES

Coursera. The 4 Ps of Marketing: What They Are and How to Use Them. 8/10/2022.

As referenced in:
https://www.coursera.org/articles/4-ps-of-marketing

Hill, Andrea. When Marketing, Be Clear Who You Want To Reach and What You Want To Sell. Digital Marketing Decisions, 2/11/2021

As referenced in:
https://instoremag.com/when-marketing-be-clear-who-you-want-to-reach-and-what-you-want-to-sell/?oly_enc_id=8486A9291356F6C

Koshy, Vinay. 18 Powerful Marketing Stategies To Grow Business Faster, 1/14/2022.

As referenced in:
https://www.engagebay.com/blog/powerful-marketing-strategies/

Less Everything. Unconventional Marketing With No Money, Chapter 5: Business Guide: Run Your Business. Don’t Let Your Business Run You.

As referenced in:
http://lesseverything.com/business-advice/unconventional-marketing/

Main, Kelly. 18 Jewelry Marketing Ideas to Drive Sales Without Spending a Fortune, 12/13/2021.

As referenced in:
https://fitsmallbusiness.com/jewelry-marketing-ideas/

Smith, Lisa. The 16 Best Marketing Strategies to Try This Year.

As referenced in:
https://www.wordstream.com/blog/ws/2020/01/07/best-marketing-strategies

_______________________________

Thank you. I hope you found this article useful.

Also, check out my website (www.warrenfeldjewelry.com).

Enroll in my jewelry design and business of craft Video Tutorials online. Begin with my ORIENTATION TO BEADS & JEWELRY FINDINGS COURSE.

Follow my articles on Medium.com.

Subscribe to my Learn To Bead blog (https://blog.landofodds.com).

Visit Land of Odds online (https://www.landofodds.com)for all your jewelry making supplies.

Check out my Jewelry Making and Beadwork Kits.

Add your name to my email list.

_________________________________

Other Articles of Interest by Warren Feld:

Saying Good-Bye! To Your Jewelry: A Rite Of Passage

The Jewelry Design Philosophy: Not Craft, Not Art, But Design

What Is Jewelry, Really?

The Jewelry Design Philosophy

Creativity: How Do You Get It? How Do You Enhance It?

Disciplinary Literacy and Fluency In Design

Becoming The Bead Artist and Jewelry Designer

5 Essential Questions Every Jewelry Designer Should Have An Answer For

Getting Started / Channeling Your Excitement

Getting Started / Developing Your Passion

Getting Started / Cultivating Your Practice

Becoming One With What Inspires You

Architectural Basics of Jewelry Design

Doubt / Self Doubt: Major Pitfalls For The Jewelry Designer

Techniques and Technologies: Knowing What To Do

Jewelry, Sex and Sexuality

Jewelry Making Materials: Knowing What To Do

Teaching Discplinary Literacy: Strategic Thinking In Jewelry Design

The Jewelry Designer’s Approach To Color

Point, Line, Plane, Shape, Form, Theme: Creating Something Out Of Nothing

The Jewelry Designer’s Path To Resonance

Jewelry Design Principles: Composing, Constructing, Manipulating

Jewelry Design Composition: Playing With Building Blocks Called Design Elements

Contemporary Jewelry Is Not A “Look” — It’s A Way Of Thinking

__________________________________

SO YOU WANT TO BE A JEWELRY DESIGNER
Merging Your Voice With Form

588pp, many images and diagrams Ebook or Print

PEARL KNOTTING…Warren’s Way
Easy. Simple. No tools. Anyone Can Do!

184pp, many images and diagrams Ebook or Print

SO YOU WANT TO DO CRAFT SHOWS

16 Lessons I Learned Doing Craft Shows

198pp, many images and diagrams Ebook or Print

___________________________________________

Posted in bead weaving, beads, beadwork, business of craft, craft shows, Entrepreneurship, jewelry design, jewelry making, pearl knotting, professional development, wire and metal | Tagged: , , , | Leave a Comment »

Tapping Into That Creative Element Is Such A High

Posted by learntobead on July 28, 2022

Translating thoughts, feelings, emotions into color, form, structure. Can never get enough of this. But where does all this creativity come from?

I remember in college — way back when — I took a physiological psychiatry class with a professor name Ina Samuels. Dr. Samuels was one of my mentors. She discussed what was new-thinking then, how the brain is this self-actualizing entity. Thoughts reside less in certain defined areas of the brain, and are more a collection of organized chemical-electrical pathways traversing the brain, all around and within it. Memories are more defined pathways that get traversed a lot.

The brain has the ability to invent, and re-invent itself. It is self-stimulative. The brain pleasures itself with creative thoughts over and over and over again each day. Sexy. Sensual. The act of creating is almost masturbatory. The brain discovers, organizes, reinforces and remembers.

Of course, I did not wax so eloquently on my final exam in Dr. Samuel’s class. She gave me a C, and I was embarrassed to have performed so poorly. I got carried away with creatively building upon my understanding of neural pathways, synapses, and thinking — too much so, that my thoughts were way off course. I carried the discussion to mechanics of three way connections and power boosters and revolving tracks — all ideas never before expressed in texts or classes or on final exams.

Yes, I let my creativity carry the day. While it didn’t earn me a good grade at the time, it sure was fun. To be wrapped up in my insights, imaginations, and good ole fashioned, solid in an organizing way, brain sex.

_______________________________

Thank you. I hope you found this article useful.

Also, check out my website (www.warrenfeldjewelry.com).

Enroll in my jewelry design and business of craft Video Tutorials online. Begin with my ORIENTATION TO BEADS & JEWELRY FINDINGS COURSE.

Follow my articles on Medium.com.

Subscribe to my Learn To Bead blog (https://blog.landofodds.com).

Visit Land of Odds online (https://www.landofodds.com)for all your jewelry making supplies.

Check out my Jewelry Making and Beadwork Kits.

Add your name to my email list.

_________________________________

Other Articles of Interest by Warren Feld:

Saying Good-Bye! To Your Jewelry: A Rite Of Passage

The Jewelry Design Philosophy: Not Craft, Not Art, But Design

What Is Jewelry, Really?

The Jewelry Design Philosophy

Creativity: How Do You Get It? How Do You Enhance It?

Disciplinary Literacy and Fluency In Design

Becoming The Bead Artist and Jewelry Designer

5 Essential Questions Every Jewelry Designer Should Have An Answer For

Getting Started / Channeling Your Excitement

Getting Started / Developing Your Passion

Getting Started / Cultivating Your Practice

Becoming One With What Inspires You

Architectural Basics of Jewelry Design

Doubt / Self Doubt: Major Pitfalls For The Jewelry Designer

Techniques and Technologies: Knowing What To Do

Jewelry, Sex and Sexuality

Jewelry Making Materials: Knowing What To Do

Teaching Discplinary Literacy: Strategic Thinking In Jewelry Design

The Jewelry Designer’s Approach To Color

Point, Line, Plane, Shape, Form, Theme: Creating Something Out Of Nothing

The Jewelry Designer’s Path To Resonance

Jewelry Design Principles: Composing, Constructing, Manipulating

Jewelry Design Composition: Playing With Building Blocks Called Design Elements

Contemporary Jewelry Is Not A “Look” — It’s A Way Of Thinking

__________________________________

SO YOU WANT TO BE A JEWELRY DESIGNER
Merging Your Voice With Form

588pp, many images and diagrams Ebook or Print

PEARL KNOTTING…Warren’s Way
Easy. Simple. No tools. Anyone Can Do!

184pp, many images and diagrams Ebook or Print

SO YOU WANT TO DO CRAFT SHOWS

16 Lessons I Learned Doing Craft Shows

198pp, many images and diagrams Ebook or Print

___________________________________________

Posted in Art or Craft?, art theory, bead weaving, beads, beadwork, business of craft, craft shows, creativity, jewelry design, jewelry making, Learn To Bead, pearl knotting, wire and metal | Tagged: , , | Leave a Comment »

Don’t Price Yourself Out Of Business

Posted by learntobead on July 28, 2022

Parts, Labor Overhead

One of my clients, Jan, had taken a few of my classes, was very excited about beading and jewelry making. She began selling her pieces to the people she worked with. She was a traveling salesperson for a health care company, and met lots of people on her travels. And everyone wanted her pieces.

Week after week, Jan would return to the shop and buy a few hundred dollars of beads. and week after week, she enthusiastically reported that she was selling her pieces right and left. After several months, she remarked that she needed to take my Pricing class. As she continued to talk and elaborate about her pricing strategies, she remarked that she typically added $15.00 to the cost of her materials, and that sometimes, her prices were probably lower than the cost of her materials.

Hmmmm….

So if she paid $55.00 for the materials in her piece, she might price it at $70–75.00. A great deal for her customer. But not so great for Jan. I told her to raise her prices.

…And sign up for my online video tutorial about Pricing and Selling Your Jewelry.

_______________________________

Thank you. I hope you found this article useful.

Also, check out my website (www.warrenfeldjewelry.com).

Enroll in my jewelry design and business of craft Video Tutorials online. Begin with my ORIENTATION TO BEADS & JEWELRY FINDINGS COURSE.

Follow my articles on Medium.com.

Subscribe to my Learn To Bead blog (https://blog.landofodds.com).

Visit Land of Odds online (https://www.landofodds.com)for all your jewelry making supplies.

Check out my Jewelry Making and Beadwork Kits.

Add your name to my email list.

_________________________________

Other Articles of Interest by Warren Feld:

Saying Good-Bye! To Your Jewelry: A Rite Of Passage

The Jewelry Design Philosophy: Not Craft, Not Art, But Design

What Is Jewelry, Really?

The Jewelry Design Philosophy

Creativity: How Do You Get It? How Do You Enhance It?

Disciplinary Literacy and Fluency In Design

Becoming The Bead Artist and Jewelry Designer

5 Essential Questions Every Jewelry Designer Should Have An Answer For

Getting Started / Channeling Your Excitement

Getting Started / Developing Your Passion

Getting Started / Cultivating Your Practice

Becoming One With What Inspires You

Architectural Basics of Jewelry Design

Doubt / Self Doubt: Major Pitfalls For The Jewelry Designer

Techniques and Technologies: Knowing What To Do

Jewelry, Sex and Sexuality

Jewelry Making Materials: Knowing What To Do

Teaching Discplinary Literacy: Strategic Thinking In Jewelry Design

The Jewelry Designer’s Approach To Color

Point, Line, Plane, Shape, Form, Theme: Creating Something Out Of Nothing

The Jewelry Designer’s Path To Resonance

Jewelry Design Principles: Composing, Constructing, Manipulating

Jewelry Design Composition: Playing With Building Blocks Called Design Elements

Contemporary Jewelry Is Not A “Look” — It’s A Way Of Thinking

__________________________________

SO YOU WANT TO BE A JEWELRY DESIGNER
Merging Your Voice With Form

588pp, many images and diagrams Ebook or Print

PEARL KNOTTING…Warren’s Way
Easy. Simple. No tools. Anyone Can Do!

184pp, many images and diagrams Ebook or Print

SO YOU WANT TO DO CRAFT SHOWS

16 Lessons I Learned Doing Craft Shows

198pp, many images and diagrams Ebook or Print

___________________________________________

Posted in Art or Craft?, bead weaving, beads, beadwork, business of craft, craft shows, jewelry design, jewelry making, Learn To Bead, pearl knotting, professional development, wire and metal | Tagged: , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

Why Some Jewelry Sells and Other Jewelry Does Not

Posted by learntobead on July 28, 2022

My niece’s 6-year old daughter told me the other day, “Warren, I wish I could get a job where I can make bracelets all day!” How cute! She definitely would have a lot of fun making jewelry. She most certainly could make money doing it. But I don’t think she was old enough to appreciate the amount of work, strategic thinking, and marketing and good business sense involved, in order to succeed.

But maybe she did. Jewelry making tapes into our creative souls, our artistic essence. The fact that you can make money at it, moreover, serves to heighten the experience.

Two girls — one 12 and one 13 years old — were determined to make money that summer. They had had some experience setting up a lemonade stand last year, but they were ready to make the big bucks. So they turned to jewelry. They created an attractive shelter along the side of the road, and posted clever signs — REFRESHING SPARKLES — to catch drivers going and coming in either direction. Instead of lemonade, however, their customers found cool earrings, and breezy necklaces, and yummy bracelets. And the two girls found success!

While there are many business challenges for jewelry designers, — young and old, alike — you can most assuredly answer the question — Can You Really Make Money Selling Jewelry? — with a resounding YES! It takes some planning. Some Moxie. Some start-up money. Some marketing. And some luck. But it can be done.

For people who sell their jewelry, their art is both a business as well as a source of creativity and self-expression. To be successful, they need to bring an understanding of business fundamentals to the business, and they need to find enthusiasm for business in similar ways to how they found their passion for jewelry. There will be ups and downs, as the economy changes or fashions and styles change. They will wear multiple hats — designer, distributor, manufacturer, retailer — and not always be sure which hat to wear when. They will need to understand marketing, pricing and selling. They will need to have a feel for reading and understanding people.

Successful jewelry design businesses today share several traits. They have a focus on what they do as a business model. They are comfortable working long stretches in a production mode — even though this can be very boring for the artist. They have some comfort level with both bricks and clicks. I don’t think you can have a successful business today without both a real physical presence somewhere and some on-line visibility as well.

Jewelry businesses today also must learn to quickly adapt to competition. This is not only competition from other local, regional or national jewelry designers, but from overseas, as well. Remember in the 1970s, when Asian manufacturers started selling low cost Native American jewelry, they almost put the Native American jewelry makers out of business. Today Chinese lampwork companies are wiping out the opportunities for low-end, simple, basic lampwork glass beads made in America. And adapt is the key word here. It may mean having to specialize in higher quality items, or relying on materials or designs unique to your locale. It may mean having to provide more educational and informational materials with your products to give them a competitive advantage.

Your market today may be international. if you have images of your pieces on-line, then someone in Taiwan or France can view posted images just as easily as someone in Nashville or San Francisco. They may buy your designs. They may copy your designs. Reality, what a concept here.

Successful jewelry designers keep their work fresh and relevant. They build in evaluative components into their business. They do a lot of product and ideas research. They experiment with concepts and other markets. They acutely know their competition. They strive to create a brand identify for their pieces. Branding not only best secures your client to you as a designer, but makes it that much difficult for other jewelry makers to copy your work and present it as their own.

_______________________________

Thank you. I hope you found this article useful.

Also, check out my website (www.warrenfeldjewelry.com).

Enroll in my jewelry design and business of craft Video Tutorials online. Begin with my ORIENTATION TO BEADS & JEWELRY FINDINGS COURSE.

Follow my articles on Medium.com.

Subscribe to my Learn To Bead blog (https://blog.landofodds.com).

Visit Land of Odds online (https://www.landofodds.com)for all your jewelry making supplies.

Check out my Jewelry Making and Beadwork Kits.

Add your name to my email list.

_________________________________

Other Articles of Interest by Warren Feld:

Saying Good-Bye! To Your Jewelry: A Rite Of Passage

The Jewelry Design Philosophy: Not Craft, Not Art, But Design

What Is Jewelry, Really?

The Jewelry Design Philosophy

Creativity: How Do You Get It? How Do You Enhance It?

Disciplinary Literacy and Fluency In Design

Becoming The Bead Artist and Jewelry Designer

5 Essential Questions Every Jewelry Designer Should Have An Answer For

Getting Started / Channeling Your Excitement

Getting Started / Developing Your Passion

Getting Started / Cultivating Your Practice

Becoming One With What Inspires You

Architectural Basics of Jewelry Design

Doubt / Self Doubt: Major Pitfalls For The Jewelry Designer

Techniques and Technologies: Knowing What To Do

Jewelry, Sex and Sexuality

Jewelry Making Materials: Knowing What To Do

Teaching Discplinary Literacy: Strategic Thinking In Jewelry Design

The Jewelry Designer’s Approach To Color

Point, Line, Plane, Shape, Form, Theme: Creating Something Out Of Nothing

The Jewelry Designer’s Path To Resonance

Jewelry Design Principles: Composing, Constructing, Manipulating

Jewelry Design Composition: Playing With Building Blocks Called Design Elements

Contemporary Jewelry Is Not A “Look” — It’s A Way Of Thinking

__________________________________

SO YOU WANT TO BE A JEWELRY DESIGNER
Merging Your Voice With Form

588pp, many images and diagrams Ebook or Print

PEARL KNOTTING…Warren’s Way
Easy. Simple. No tools. Anyone Can Do!

184pp, many images and diagrams Ebook or Print

SO YOU WANT TO DO CRAFT SHOWS

16 Lessons I Learned Doing Craft Shows

198pp, many images and diagrams Ebook or Print

___________________________________________

Posted in Art or Craft?, bead weaving, beads, beadwork, business of craft, craft shows, creativity, jewelry design, jewelry making, wire and metal | Tagged: , , , , | Leave a Comment »

Often Unexpected, Always Exciting: Your First Jewelry Sale

Posted by learntobead on July 28, 2022

How many times have you heard a jewelry artist say…

I can’t bear to part with my pieces.

My jewelry is too precious to me.

I only give a few pieces that I make away as gifts to friends and family.

I’ve never sold anything.

Selling would take the fun out of it.

And then, someone offers to buy a piece she is wearing, and the rest is history. A sale! Sold! They paid so much more than it cost me! Right off her wrist! Gotta make another! That was so fast! That was so easy!

My friend Connie used to make things only for friends. She always wore the things she made. At one point, she was repeatedly approched in various stores around town by women who wanted to buy the pieces aroundher neck.

At first, Connie quoted them, what she thought were outlandish prices. No one hesitated. Connie was awe-struck, but didn’t say No. I don’t know if she secretly wore a sign on her back — JEWELRY FOR SALE — or, somehow stuck out her cheek in such a way, as if asking to be kissed, that people came over to her, but she was getting quite good at attracting buyers. At TJMAX, at TARGET, at MACY’s, at DILLARDS, at SEARS, at KROGERS and PUBLIX. She kepy upping her prices each time, and no one had yet to blink!

Jona had made many things before, but had never sold anything. Then she had one of those weeks. It started in a Dalt’s restaurant. The waitress had to have them. She had to have Jona’s earrings. She had to have them now. Any price. So Jona suggests a price, the waitress laid the money on the table, and Jona slowly removed each earring from each ear, and said a silent Good-bye. Later that week, one of her friends was desperate. The wedding was this weekend. The piece of jewelry she had purchased for herself went lost. She remembered one of Jona’s pairs, and asked for it, and insisted on paying for it.

Elizabeth wanted to show her best friend at work the kinds of jewelry she was making. One day, she brought a box of jewelry in with her to work. At lunch time, they spread all the pieces out on a table. All of a sudden, the table was mobbed by other women in the lunch room. They were grabbing, trying on, and throwing money down right and left.

Ingren had a box of her mother’s jewelry stored away in a closet. She didn’t particularly like these pieces, and would never wear them, but knew they had some value. She took pictures of each one, and placed them on EBAY to see if she could auction them off. She sold all but one within a week’s time.

Those first jewelry sales can result in a big high. They are thrilling. Exciting. Very motivating. Selling that first piece feels like it can change your life.

But it’s that second sale that begins to determine if you can make a business out of it. Can you do it again? Is it as much fun? Now all of a sudden you have to think about record keeping, government forms, tracking inventory, maing enough product, adequately pricing your stuff, and marketing to recruit and retain customers.

The situation doesn’t seem quite the same anymore.

But believe me, it’s not as onerous as it might appear at first.

And selling your jewelry keeps getting better and better and better!

_______________________________

Thank you. I hope you found this article useful.

Also, check out my website (www.warrenfeldjewelry.com).

Enroll in my jewelry design and business of craft Video Tutorials online. Begin with my ORIENTATION TO BEADS & JEWELRY FINDINGS COURSE.

Follow my articles on Medium.com.

Subscribe to my Learn To Bead blog (https://blog.landofodds.com).

Visit Land of Odds online (https://www.landofodds.com)for all your jewelry making supplies.

Check out my Jewelry Making and Beadwork Kits.

Add your name to my email list.

_________________________________

Other Articles of Interest by Warren Feld:

Saying Good-Bye! To Your Jewelry: A Rite Of Passage

The Jewelry Design Philosophy: Not Craft, Not Art, But Design

What Is Jewelry, Really?

The Jewelry Design Philosophy

Creativity: How Do You Get It? How Do You Enhance It?

Disciplinary Literacy and Fluency In Design

Becoming The Bead Artist and Jewelry Designer

5 Essential Questions Every Jewelry Designer Should Have An Answer For

Getting Started / Channeling Your Excitement

Getting Started / Developing Your Passion

Getting Started / Cultivating Your Practice

Becoming One With What Inspires You

Architectural Basics of Jewelry Design

Doubt / Self Doubt: Major Pitfalls For The Jewelry Designer

Techniques and Technologies: Knowing What To Do

Jewelry, Sex and Sexuality

Jewelry Making Materials: Knowing What To Do

Teaching Discplinary Literacy: Strategic Thinking In Jewelry Design

The Jewelry Designer’s Approach To Color

Point, Line, Plane, Shape, Form, Theme: Creating Something Out Of Nothing

The Jewelry Designer’s Path To Resonance

Jewelry Design Principles: Composing, Constructing, Manipulating

Jewelry Design Composition: Playing With Building Blocks Called Design Elements

Contemporary Jewelry Is Not A “Look” — It’s A Way Of Thinking

__________________________________

SO YOU WANT TO BE A JEWELRY DESIGNER
Merging Your Voice With Form

588pp, many images and diagrams Ebook or Print

PEARL KNOTTING…Warren’s Way
Easy. Simple. No tools. Anyone Can Do!

184pp, many images and diagrams Ebook or Print

SO YOU WANT TO DO CRAFT SHOWS

16 Lessons I Learned Doing Craft Shows

198pp, many images and diagrams Ebook or Print

___________________________________________

Posted in Art or Craft?, bead weaving, beads, beadwork, business of craft, craft shows, creativity, jewelry design, jewelry making, wire and metal | Tagged: , , , , | Leave a Comment »

Visiting Jewelry Artisans Studios and Shops in Istanbul, Turkey

Posted by learntobead on July 20, 2022

Before the pandemic, I was trying to arrange some Enrichment Travel tours. One was to Rome. This was part of the itinerary. If any group wants me to lead a Jewelry Discovery Tour to Rome or elsewhere, I would be happy to talk with you about this. — Warren@warrenfeldjewelry.com

Some favorite sites and studios in Instanbul:1. Topkapi Museum, Treasury Section Guided Tour

Once the palace of the Sultans of the Ottoman Empire, Topkapi is a vast treasury of Islamic culture, jewelry, costumes, science and weaponry. This tour is of the Treasury section (7 Halls of Exhibits) of the Topkapi Palace Museum (3rd courtyard) where you will find masterpieces of Turkish art of jewelry from different centuries and exquisite creations from the Far East, India and Europe.(2 hours guided tour of Treasury Section; 1–2 hours free time for guests to wander other parts of museum on their own.)
Open every day except Tues, 9am-4:45pm (til 6:45 in april- october)
2015: most of Treasury Section is under restoration and is closed; check back for when work is finished)

WALKING TOUR OF ARTISAN JEWELRY GALLERIES IN NISANTASI / TESVIKIYE AREA
Nisantasi / Tesvikiye is one of the best shopping districts of Istanbul. It contains designer label stores, very nice restaurants and cafes, a beautiful mall, and a few outstanding hotels. It is home to several galleries showcasing the best of Turkish jewelry artists and artisan jewelry. The store hours in this district are typically 11–7pm Tuesday through Saturday. Need to verify Monday and Sunday hours.

  1. Urart (abdi ipekci Cad. 18/1)

One of Turkey’s most established jewelry companies, Urart makes re-creations, and also chic interpretations, of ancient Anatolian designs and motifs, Hittite symbols of noblesse and glory, the arabesques of Islamic art speaking to the infinity, Seljuk tiles echoing the dreams of the Silk Road or fluid objects of modern life… Design commits to matter, not only the striking form but also the wisdom that abides at the heart of a culture.

2. Fenix (abdi ipekci Cad, Deniz Apt No: 20 D:4)

Fenix aims to bring the beautiful creations of Turkish jewelry brands such as Tohum and Alosh to the enthused consumer.

3. Zeynep Erol Taki Tasarim (Atiye Sok, Yuva Apt No: 8 D:3)

İn her first years, Zeynep Erol was mainly inspired by nature and created forms with her own modern interpretation. İn later years however, her designs have become more geometrical. Zeynep Erol’s Jewelry reflects her spiritual inner world, affections, relations, feelings, desires and change in the philosophy of life. The main materials used by Zeynep Erol in creating her pieces are; green, white and red gold (18k) together with silver (950). The selection of the remaining materials and the precious stones are chosen differently for each particular theme she wants to get across. A wide range of materials such as coconut shells, pearls, brilliants, sapphire, ruby, emeralds, quartz, glass, rose cut and uncut diamonds, sandalwood and feathers are used by her as necessary.

4. Aida Bergsen Jewellery (abdi Ipekci Cad., Atiye Sokak Ak Apt No:7, Daire 8)

Based in Istanbul, jeweller and sculptor Aida Bergsen creates jewellery with different themes that reflect traces of her hometown and its multi-layered cultural fibre. She Draws inspiration mainly from mythological heroes, organic forms and the human anatomy. Each of her wearable sculptures are meticulously crafted in wax then transformed into timeless jewels using traditional techniques.”I try to re-inerprate traditional crafts and skills in jewellery making in order to create a more contemporary approach. I like to have a play on the contrast between light and shadow as I believe it is key in capturing form at a deeper level.”Aida

Bergsen was awarded with the “étoile de mode” at BIJHORCA in Paris and she was named the first runner- up for the very prestigious Couture Show Las Vegas in 2011 and 2014.

5. ECNP Galeri — Elacindoruknazanpak (Ahmet fetgari sokak No: 56)

ECNP Gallery is a contemporary jewelry gallery showing the designs and collections of Ela Cindoruk and Nazan Pak. Partners since 1989, Ela and Nazan’s designs and creative process have reflected their philosophy of ‘less is more’. The duo have participated in numerous fairs in Turkey and abroad; their works can be found in many museum shops and galleries. Ela has received the 2012 Red Rot Design Award. Same year, the creative duo was awarded 2012 Jewelry Designer of the Year Award of Elle Style Awards. On September 2014, the designers opened their new showroom and studio, on the 21st year work anniversary. The showroom also has a gallery under its roof, Ela and Nazan’s a long time dream, a reflection of their commitment to design and aesthetic and their ambition to this gallery hosts design exhibits and aims at becoming a meeting point for the design/art world.

6. Soda, (Tesvikiye Mh, Sakayik Sokak No:1)

SODA, founded in 2010, focuses on contemporary trends in art, particularly of jewelry artists. They are interested in showcasing the use of new materials and design concepts. Some permanent artist representations as well as rotating exhbitis.

7. Alef (Tesvikiye Mh, Haci Emin Efendi Sokak, No:4)

This goldsmith adapts classical goldsmith principles to contemporary techniques and designs. Alef’s founder, jewelry designer Yeşim Yüksek,

8. Boybeyi (abdi ipekci Cad. No: 10)

BoyBeyi is a family-run business that has been around for more than 100 years, their collection features many traditional rose-cut diamonds, as well as modern and colorful pieces, all inspired by the Turkish culture.

WALKING TOUR OF JEWELRY GALLERIES, JEWELRY AND BEAD SHOPS IN AND NEAR THE GRAND BAZAAR

This walking tour takes you in and around the Grand Bazaar, discovering jewelry galleries displaying works by local artists, as well as a myriad of stores in the Grand Bazaar which sell jewelry, beads and beading supplies.

  1. Tiara (yavuz Sinan mah., rakip gumus pala cad. No; 69)

Antique jewelry, award-winning designs, modern designs that reflect trends in the world, some might find at Tiara Jewelry … Byzantine, Roman and Ottoman cultures, inspired by the collections, since the ancient civilizations in history has produced reflections of jewelry. Traditional hand-made items by craftsmen in the production of valuable, native jewelry lovers to win the admiration of the foreign guests

2. Kafkas (kalpakcilarbasi cad.)

Widely considered to be one of Istanbul’s top jewellers, with several locations throughout the city. The cuffs are studded with precious stones, the necklaces are vintage-inspired, and the gold rings are topped with enormous yellow diamonds. The Bazaar outpost is Kafkas’ first store, and you’ll often find the owners presiding behind the glittering displays.

3. Sevan Bicakci (gazi sinan pasa sok No 16)

Sevan Bıçakçı has started his journey as a jeweler when he was only 12 years old as an intern in Hovsep Çatak’s workshop. His first personal collection that he created in 2002 was inspired by the historical Grand Bazaar — Sultanahmet area where he spends a considerable part of his daily life. Since then his unique designs that require intensive craftsmanship have been attracting the attention of collectors as well as some distinguished stores.

4. Walk up Nuruosmaniye Caddessi Past the heart of jewelry and bead stores in the Grand Bazaar

There are piles and piles of antique rings, bracelets, necklaces, and earrings from Central Asia, as well as walls covered in strands of colorful beads made out of precious and semiprecious stones.

OPTIONAL: 3 block side trip to http://www.haciburhan.com) aka Emin Bead Company, Sterling Silver Handcrafted Turkish Beads. Sell different silver jewelry, beads and accessories for silver jewelry. Wholesale. Eminsinan Mah. Yeniceriler Cad. Evkaf Sok. No: 15 (Formerly 9) Cemberlitas, Fatih (verify store hours)

5. Angel Old Jewellery (kiliccilar sok., cuhaci han No: 36)

When you’re visiting this tiny, poorly lit (the blindingly bright interior doesn’t do their products any justice) store, you will be transformed into a museum where you can purchase anything you want from a collection of princess-worthy jewelry. From tiaras to necklaces, brooches to bracelets, these elegant pieces are bedecked with intricate, precious stones like diamonds. This store has both antique pieces, as well as new jewelry that looks vintage due to a special ageing method they use.

6. Bagus (cevahir bedesteni sok, kapali carsi D: 133)

In the Grand Bazaar’s Cevahir Bedestani, Bagus sells the proprietor’s own reasonably priced collection of handmade jewelry made with silver and semiprecious stones as well as intriguing pieces imported from countries including India, Nepal, Thailand, and Indonesia.

warren@warrenfeldjewelry.com
www.warrenfeldjewelry.com

_______________________________

Thank you. I hope you found this article useful.

Also, check out my website (www.warrenfeldjewelry.com).

Enroll in my jewelry design and business of craft Video Tutorials online. Begin with my ORIENTATION TO BEADS & JEWELRY FINDINGS COURSE.

Follow my articles on Medium.com.

Subscribe to my Learn To Bead blog (https://blog.landofodds.com).

Visit Land of Odds online (https://www.landofodds.com)for all your jewelry making supplies.

Check out my Jewelry Making and Beadwork Kits.

Add your name to my email list.

_________________________________

Other Articles of Interest by Warren Feld:

Resiliency: Do You Have The Most Important Skill Designers Must Have?

Disciplinary Literacy and Fluency In Design

Backward Design is Forward Thinking

How Creatives Can Successfully Survive In Business

Part I: The First Essential Question Every Designer Should Be Able To Answer: Is What I do Craft, Art or Design?

Part 2: The Second Essential Question Every Designer Should Be Able To Answer: What Should I Create?

Part 3: The Third Essential Question Every Designer Should Be Able To Answer: What Materials (and Techniques) Work Best?

Part 4: The Fourth Essential Question Every Designer Should Be Able To Answer: How Do I Evoke A Resonant Response To My Work?

Part 5: The Firth Essential Question Every Designer Should Be Able To Answer: How Do I Know My Design Is Finished?

Doubt / Self-Doubt: 8 Pitfalls Designers Fall Into…And What To Do About Them

Part 1: Your Passion For Design: Is It Necessary To Have A Passion?

Part 2: Your Passion For Design: Do You Have To Be Passionate To Be Creative?

Part 3: Your Passion For Design: How Does Being Passionate Make You A Better Designer?

__________________________________

SO YOU WANT TO BE A JEWELRY DESIGNER
Merging Your Voice With Form

588pp, many images and diagrams Ebook or Print

PEARL KNOTTING…Warren’s Way
Easy. Simple. No tools. Anyone Can Do!

184pp, many images and diagrams Ebook or Print

SO YOU WANT TO DO CRAFT SHOWS

16 Lessons I Learned Doing Craft Shows

198pp, many images and diagrams Ebook or Print

___________________________________________

Posted in Art or Craft?, bead weaving, beads, beadwork, craft shows, creativity, cruises, design management, design thinking, enrichment travel, jewelry collecting, jewelry design, jewelry making, Learn To Bead, pearl knotting, Stitch 'n Bitch, Travel Opportunities, wire and metal, Workshops, Classes, Exhibits | Tagged: , , , , | Leave a Comment »

A Visit To Jewelry Artisans and Galleries In Rome, Italy

Posted by learntobead on July 20, 2022

Before the pandemic, I was trying to arrange some Enrichment Travel tours.    One was to Rome.     This was part of the itinerary.   If any group wants me to lead a Jewelry Discovery Tour to Rome or elsewhere, I would be happy to talk with you about this.

ROME 1.  JEWELRY GALLERIES WALKING TOUR, ROME.  There are several stores/galleries specializing in artisan jewelry, with both some very famous local jewelry designers, as well as some less known between the Piazza di Spagna (Spanish Steps) and Piazza del Orologi.     This is a 1.25 mile (2.1km) leisurely jewelry shopping tour along ancient walking streets in the heart of historic Rome, where we discover the works of local jewelry artisans. (5 hour walking tour with dinner break; begin at 3pm (any day except Monday) when these shops are most likely to be open.  Typical hours:  open 10-1:30pm and 3:30-7:30pm).

  1. Damiani, via condotti 84 (All Damiani collection jewels are exclusive and unique creations, combining the allure of Italian jewelry with the unmistakable, always modern and fashionable Damiani taste.)
  2. Nicola Boncompagni, via de Babuino 15 (vintage jewelry)

        3. Oreficeria Franchi, via di Ripetta 156 (works of enrico franchi)

   4. Melis Massimo Maria, via dell’Orso 57 (ancient techniques reproduced in gold)

5. Studio Giorelleria R. Quattrocolo, via della Scrofa 54 (both antique jewelry and jewelry produced in their own workshop studio, including their line of micro-mosaics)

6. Alternatives, via della Chiesa Nuova 10  (Specializes in contemporary. Avant guard jewelry and is dedicated to the promotion of both newcomers and internationally established artists from all over the world)  

7. Del Fina Delettrez, via Governo Vecchio 67 (Delfina Delettrez Fendi is a designer and jeweller based in Rome. Original use of figurative surrealism and natural iconography including hands, eyes, bees, and lips.)

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

ROME 2.  SHOPPING TRIP TO ARTISAN MARKET IN ROME.    Visit to Mercato Monti, 30+ artisans selling fashions, jewelry and accessories, first 3 Sundays and last Saturday of the month, 8am-8pm, inside exhibit hall of Palatino Hotel, via Leonina 46.   (4 hours)

warren@warrenfeldjewelry.com

www.warrenfeldjewelry.com

Posted in Art or Craft?, art theory, bead weaving, beads, beadwork, business of craft, craft shows, creativity, design theory, design thinking, enrichment travel, jewelry collecting, jewelry design, jewelry making, Learn To Bead, pearl knotting, Stitch 'n Bitch, Travel Opportunities, wire and metal, Workshops, Classes, Exhibits | Tagged: , , , , | Leave a Comment »

DESIGNWORKS: Getting Credit Terms For Your Business

Posted by learntobead on July 15, 2022

Getting Terms

Whenever possible, I suggest trying to get net terms with your suppliers. Net terms is a form of trade credit. Instead of paying upfront for your supplies, your suppliers will give you some predetermined period of time to pay for these goods. You get your supplies right away without having to pay until an agreed-upon future date.

Usually, you would get Net 30 terms, meaning you would pay within 30 days. Sometimes, if you have not paid within the terms set, you might get assessed a penalty fee.

To apply for net terms with any supplier, you would submit a Credit Sheet.

CREDIT SHEET

You will want to prepare a Credit Sheet which lists the following information. You give this sheet to businesses where you want to apply for terms.

When you buy things from businesses, you can pay cash (sometimes check or credit card) — this is considered Pre-Payment.

You can pay COD (cash on delivery), but there is usually an extra COD charge tacked on.

Or you can pay on terms or “on account”, usually signified as Net 30 or Net 10, where you would have 30 or 10 days to pay your bill. If you don’t pay within that time, the business may take away your privilege to buy on terms, or charge you a late fee.

___________________________________

FOOTNOTES

Fundbox.com. Trade Credit: Everything you need to know about net terms for your business. n.d.
As referenced in:
https://fundbox.com/resources/guides/trade-credit/

_______________________________

Thank you. I hope you found this article useful.

Also, check out my website (www.warrenfeldjewelry.com).

Enroll in my jewelry design and business of craft Video Tutorials online. Begin with my ORIENTATION TO BEADS & JEWELRY FINDINGS COURSE.

Follow my articles on Medium.com.

Subscribe to my Learn To Bead blog (https://blog.landofodds.com).

Visit Land of Odds online (https://www.landofodds.com)for all your jewelry making supplies.

Check out my Jewelry Making and Beadwork Kits.

Add your name to my email list.

_________________________________

Other Articles of Interest by Warren Feld:

Resiliency: Do You Have The Most Important Skill Designers Must Have?

Disciplinary Literacy and Fluency In Design

Backward Design is Forward Thinking

How Creatives Can Successfully Survive In Business

Part I: The First Essential Question Every Designer Should Be Able To Answer: Is What I do Craft, Art or Design?

Part 2: The Second Essential Question Every Designer Should Be Able To Answer: What Should I Create?

Part 3: The Third Essential Question Every Designer Should Be Able To Answer: What Materials (and Techniques) Work Best?

Part 4: The Fourth Essential Question Every Designer Should Be Able To Answer: How Do I Evoke A Resonant Response To My Work?

Part 5: The Firth Essential Question Every Designer Should Be Able To Answer: How Do I Know My Design Is Finished?

Doubt / Self-Doubt: 8 Pitfalls Designers Fall Into…And What To Do About Them

Part 1: Your Passion For Design: Is It Necessary To Have A Passion?

Part 2: Your Passion For Design: Do You Have To Be Passionate To Be Creative?

Part 3: Your Passion For Design: How Does Being Passionate Make You A Better Designer?

__________________________________

SO YOU WANT TO BE A JEWELRY DESIGNER
Merging Your Voice With Form

588pp, many images and diagrams Ebook or Print

PEARL KNOTTING…Warren’s Way
Easy. Simple. No tools. Anyone Can Do!

184pp, many images and diagrams Ebook or Print

SO YOU WANT TO DO CRAFT SHOWS

16 Lessons I Learned Doing Craft Shows

198pp, many images and diagrams Ebook or Print

___________________________________________

Posted in Art or Craft?, bead weaving, beads, beadwork, business of craft, craft shows, jewelry design, jewelry making, Learn To Bead, pearl knotting, professional development, wire and metal | Tagged: , , , , | Leave a Comment »

Getting Paid: The Designer’s Challenge and Some Strategies For Overcoming This

Posted by learntobead on July 15, 2022

Getting Paid

Getting paid for your work can range from the straight-forward to the nightmare. People love your work, but often, you will find that people will be slow or resistant to pay for it. You run into this with consignment shops. you run into this with custom work for clients. You run into this with retail shops to whom you’ve offered net 30 terms. You run into this with contract and grant work, particularly with government agencies and non-profits. You run into this with people who pay you by check. (NOTE: I don’t accept checks for payment in my own design work.)

You need to get paid so you can move on to the next project.

No money, no inventory, no once-in-a-blue-moon fancy dinner.

Structuring Payments

If you are doing a lot of custom work, your clients will probably pay you in increments, say 50% up front, and 50% upon completion.

If you are doing a lot of consignment, the shops may pay for anything of yours that sells perhaps quarterly. Beware that often consignment shops are slow to pay their consignees.

If you are selling wholesale to other retailers, you might have extended them terms, say Net 30, where you expect to get paid at the end of the term period. If you extend terms to someone, get them to complete a credit application ahead of time.

For each piece sold, or for several pieces sold at the same time, you will be generating some kind of invoice.

Each month, you might also be following up with your customers with a statement form, showing what has been paid, and what still needs to be paid.

INVOICE or STATEMENT FORMS (2-part forms — one for you and one for your customer). You can get a blank pad at a local stationery store, or have these pre-printed with your business name, address and phone.

More Advice

1. Establish a clear payment policy, put it in writing, post it on your website.

2. Find out in advance when the client or business will pay you.

3. Ask if the client needs a W9 form from you in order to pay you.

4. Be clear on whom in the company is responsible for paying you, and be sure to send your invoice to that particular person. If there are also special procedures for you to follow, in order to get paid, get clarity on these right up front.

5. Don’t be shy about using a collection service — even if this means you’ll only receive a portion (say 50%) of the money originally owed you.

6. Invoice your customers promptly.

7. Stay on top of your receivables. If a customer is late, send a reminder note. If a customer is very late, assess a penalty, say 1.5 or 2% per month. Be sure if you charge penalties that these are clearly specified in your written and posted payment policies.

8. Don’t worry about losing the customer. If you are polite but firm, the customer will probably stay with you. If the customer is a dead-bead, then you do not need to continue to do business with them.

9. For large orders, you might ask for a deposit, say 25–50%.

10.Accept multiple payment options. If someone is having difficulty paying you on time, perhaps they can pay you with a credit card.

11.You might offer early payment discounts.

12.Do not payout any commissions or royalties to sales or design staff until the full invoice is paid by the customer.

_______________________________

Thank you. I hope you found this article useful.

Also, check out my website (www.warrenfeldjewelry.com).

Enroll in my jewelry design and business of craft Video Tutorials online. Begin with my ORIENTATION TO BEADS & JEWELRY FINDINGS COURSE.

Follow my articles on Medium.com.

Subscribe to my Learn To Bead blog (https://blog.landofodds.com).

Visit Land of Odds online (https://www.landofodds.com)for all your jewelry making supplies.

Check out my Jewelry Making and Beadwork Kits.

Add your name to my email list.

My ARTIST STATEMENT

My TEACHING STATEMENT.

My DESIGN PHILOSOPHY.

My PROFESSIONAL PROFILE.

My PORTFOLIO.

_________________________________

Other Articles of Interest by Warren Feld:

Resiliency: Do You Have The Most Important Skill Designers Must Have?

Disciplinary Literacy and Fluency In Design

Backward Design is Forward Thinking

How Creatives Can Successfully Survive In Business

Part I: The First Essential Question Every Designer Should Be Able To Answer: Is What I do Craft, Art or Design?

Part 2: The Second Essential Question Every Designer Should Be Able To Answer: What Should I Create?

Part 3: The Third Essential Question Every Designer Should Be Able To Answer: What Materials (and Techniques) Work Best?

Part 4: The Fourth Essential Question Every Designer Should Be Able To Answer: How Do I Evoke A Resonant Response To My Work?

Part 5: The Firth Essential Question Every Designer Should Be Able To Answer: How Do I Know My Design Is Finished?

Doubt / Self-Doubt: 8 Pitfalls Designers Fall Into…And What To Do About Them

Part 1: Your Passion For Design: Is It Necessary To Have A Passion?

Part 2: Your Passion For Design: Do You Have To Be Passionate To Be Creative?

Part 3: Your Passion For Design: How Does Being Passionate Make You A Better Designer?

__________________________________

SO YOU WANT TO BE A JEWELRY DESIGNER
Merging Your Voice With Form

588pp, many images and diagrams Ebook or Print

PEARL KNOTTING…Warren’s Way
Easy. Simple. No tools. Anyone Can Do!

184pp, many images and diagrams Ebook or Print

SO YOU WANT TO DO CRAFT SHOWS

16 Lessons I Learned Doing Craft Shows

198pp, many images and diagrams Ebook or Print

___________________________________________

Posted in Art or Craft?, bead weaving, beads, beadwork, business of craft, craft shows, jewelry design, jewelry making, pearl knotting, professional development, Stitch 'n Bitch, wire and metal | Tagged: , , , | Leave a Comment »

Posted by learntobead on July 14, 2022

SO YOU WANT TO DO CRAFT SHOWS

16 Lessons I Learned Doing Craft Shows

Check out this new book by Warren Feld
Ebook or Print

Doing craft shows is a wonderful experience. You can make a lot of money at craft shows, you meet new people, you have new adventures. You learn a lot about business and arts and crafts designing.

IF… you do your homework when selecting them,
and verify all information

IF… you are very organized in preparing for them,
setting up, selling and re-packing up

IF… you promote, promote, promote.

In this book, I discuss 16 lessons I learned, Including How To

(1) Find, Evaluate and Select Craft Shows Right for You,

(2) Determine a Set of Realistic Goals,

(3) Compute a Simple Break-Even Analysis,

(4) Develop Your Applications and Apply in the Smartest Ways,

(5) Understand How Much Inventory to Bring,

(6) Set Up and Present Both Yourself and Your Wares,

(7) Best Promote and Operate Your Craft Show Business.

Table of Contents

What You Will Learn, p. 1

Intro to Book and Acknowledgements, p. 3

LESSON 1: Not Every Craft Show Is Alike, p. 13

LESSON 2: Research All Your Possibilities, p. 27

LESSON 3: Know Which Craft Shows Are For You, p. 31

LESSON 4: Set Realistic Goals / Determine Break-Even
                     Point, p. 39
LESSON 5: Get Those Applications In Early, p. 71

LESSON 6: Promote, Promote, Promote, p. 83

LESSON 7: Set Up For Success, p. 87

LESSON 8: Bring Enough Inventory To Sell, p. 121

LESSON 9: Sell Yourself And Your Craft At The Show,
                     p. 125

LESSON 10: Make A List Of Things To Bring, p. 141

LESSON 11: Be Prepared To Accept Credit Cards, p. 145

LESSON 12: Price Things To Sell, p. 147

LESSON 13: Keep Your Money Safe, p. 151

LESSON 14: Generate Follow-Up Sales, p. 163

LESSON 15: Take Care Of Yourself, p. 167

LESSON 16: Be Nice To Your Neighbors, p. 169

Some Final Words Of Advice, p. 173

Helpful Resources, p. 175

~~~~~~~

SO YOU WANT TO DO CRAFT SHOWS
16 Lessons I Learned Doing Craft Shows

198pp, many images and diagrams
Ebook or Print

______________________________

_______________________________

Thank you. I hope you found this article useful.

Also, check out my website (www.warrenfeldjewelry.com).

Enroll in my jewelry design and business of craft Video Tutorials online. Begin with my ORIENTATION TO BEADS & JEWELRY FINDINGS COURSE.

Follow my articles on Medium.com.

Subscribe to my Learn To Bead blog (https://blog.landofodds.com).

Visit Land of Odds online (https://www.landofodds.com)for all your jewelry making supplies.

Check out my Jewelry Making and Beadwork Kits.

Add your name to my email list.

_________________________________

Other Articles of Interest by Warren Feld:

Resiliency: Do You Have The Most Important Skill Designers Must Have?

Disciplinary Literacy and Fluency In Design

Backward Design is Forward Thinking

How Creatives Can Successfully Survive In Business

Part I: The First Essential Question Every Designer Should Be Able To Answer: Is What I do Craft, Art or Design?

Part 2: The Second Essential Question Every Designer Should Be Able To Answer: What Should I Create?

Part 3: The Third Essential Question Every Designer Should Be Able To Answer: What Materials (and Techniques) Work Best?

Part 4: The Fourth Essential Question Every Designer Should Be Able To Answer: How Do I Evoke A Resonant Response To My Work?

Part 5: The Firth Essential Question Every Designer Should Be Able To Answer: How Do I Know My Design Is Finished?

Doubt / Self-Doubt: 8 Pitfalls Designers Fall Into…And What To Do About Them

Part 1: Your Passion For Design: Is It Necessary To Have A Passion?

Part 2: Your Passion For Design: Do You Have To Be Passionate To Be Creative?

Part 3: Your Passion For Design: How Does Being Passionate Make You A Better Designer?

__________________________________

SO YOU WANT TO BE A JEWELRY DESIGNER
Merging Your Voice With Form

588pp, many images and diagrams Ebook or Print

PEARL KNOTTING…Warren’s Way
Easy. Simple. No tools. Anyone Can Do!

184pp, many images and diagrams Ebook or Print

SO YOU WANT TO DO CRAFT SHOWS

16 Lessons I Learned Doing Craft Shows

198pp, many images and diagrams Ebook or Print

___________________________________________

Posted in Art or Craft?, art theory, bead weaving, beads, beadwork, business of craft, craft shows, creativity, jewelry design, jewelry making, Learn To Bead, pearl knotting, Resources, wire and metal | Tagged: , , , , | Leave a Comment »

Check out these new books by Warren Feld!

Posted by learntobead on April 26, 2022

SO YOU WANT TO BE A JEWELRY DESIGNER
Merging Your Voice With Form

588pp, many images and diagrams
Ebook or Print

You make jewelry. That is what you do.

But when you think jewelry and speak jewelry and work jewelry, this is what you have become. This is your purpose.

Becoming a Jewelry Designer is exciting. With each piece, you are challenged with this profound question: Why does some jewelry draw people’s attention, and others do not? When designers turn to how-to books or art theory texts, however, these do not uncover the necessary answers. They do not show you how to make trade-offs between beauty and function. Nor how to introduce your pieces publicly. You get insufficient practical guidance about knowing when your piece is finished and successful. In short, you do not learn about design. You do not learn the essentials about how to go beyond basic mechanics, anticipate the wearer’s understandings and desires, or gain management control over the process.

So You Want To Be A Jewelry Designer reinterprets how to apply techniques and modify art theories from the Jewelry Designer’s perspective. This very detailed book, by jewelry designer Warren S. Feld, reveals how to become literate and fluent in jewelry design.

Available here: Ebook or Print

TABLE OF CONTENTS

Acknowledgements, p. 7
An Introduction, p. 11


Section 1-JEWELRY BEYOND CRAFT, p. 19
1. Jewelry Beyond Craft, p. 21

Section 2-GETTING STARTED, p. 27
2a. Becoming the Bead Artist and Jewelry Designer, p. 29
2b. 5 Questions Every Jewelry Designer Should Have An Answer For,
p. 39
2c. Channeling Excitement, p. 51
2d. Developing Your Passion, p. 65
2e. Cultivating Practice, p. 79

Section 3-WHAT IS JEWELRY, p. 97
3. What Is Jewelry, Really?, p. 99

Section 4-MATERIALS, TECHNIQUES AND TECHNOLOGIES,
p. 113
4a. Materials — Knowing What To Know, p. 115
4b. Techniques and Technologies — Knowing What To Do, p. 143
4c. Mixed Media, Mixed Techniques, p. 175

Section 5-RULES OF COMPOSITION, CONSTRUCTION, AND
MANIPULATION
, p. 179
5a. Composition — Playing With Blocks Called Design Elements, p. 181
5b. The Jewelry Designer’s Approach To Color, p. 197
5c. Point Line Plane Shape Form Theme, p. 231
5d. Jewelry Design Principles: Composing, Constructing, Manipulating,
p. 253
5e. How To Design An Ugly Necklace — The Ultimate Challenge, p. 289
5f. Architectural Basics, p. 309

5g. Architectural Basics — Anatomy of a Necklace, p. 335
5h. Architectural Basics — Sizing, p. 343

Section 6-DESIGN MANAGEMENT, p. 349
6a. The Proficient Designer: The Path To Resonance, p. 351
6b. Jewelry Design: A Managed Process, p. 377
6c. Designing With Components, p. 387

Section 7-INTRODUCING YOUR DESIGNS PUBLICLY, p. 407
7a. Shared Understandings and Desires, p. 409
7b. Backward-Design Is Forwards Thinking, p. 437

Section 8-DEVELOPING THOSE INTUITIVE SKILLS WITHIN,
p. 445
8a. Creativity Isn’t Found, It’s Developed, p. 447
8b. Inspiration and Aspiration, p. 459
8c. Your Passion For Design, p. 467

Section 9-JEWELRY IN CONTEXT, p. 483
9a. Contemporary Jewelry Is Not A Look — It’s A Way Of Thinking, p. 485
9b. Contemporizing Traditional Jewelry, p. 499
9c Fashion Style Taste Art Design, p. 513
9d. Designing With The Brain In Mind: Perception, Cognition, Sexuality,
p. 523
9e. Self-Care, p. 535

Section 10-TEACHING DISCIPLINARY LITERACY, p. 543
10. Teaching Disciplinary Literacy In Jewelry Design, p. 545

Final Words of Advice, p. 579
Thank You, p. 581
About Warren Feld, p. 583
Other Articles and Tutorials, p. 587

________________________________________________________

PEARL KNOTTING…Warren’s Way
Easy. Simple. No tools. Anyone Can Do!

184pp, many images and diagrams
Ebook or Print

In this very detailed book, with thoroughly-explained instructions and pictures, you are taught a non-traditional Pearl Knotting technique which is very easy for anyone to learn and do. Does not use special tools. Goes slowly step-by-step. Presents a simple way to tie knots and position the knots to securely abut the bead. Anticipates both appeal and functionality. Shows clearly how to attach your clasp and finish off your cords. And achieves that timeless, architectural perfection we want in our pearl knotted pieces.

Most traditional techniques are very frustrating. These can get overly complicated and awkward. They rely on tools for making and positioning the knots. When attempting to follow traditional techniques, people often find they cannot tie the knots, make good knots, get the knots close enough to the beads, nor centered between them. How to attach the piece to the clasp gets simplified or glossed over.

Fortunately, Pearl Knotting doesn’t need to be this hard.

Pearl Knotting…Warren’s Way teaches you how to:

· Hand-knot without tools

· Select stringing materials

· Begin and finish pieces by (1) attaching directly to the clasp, (2) using French wire bullion, (3), using clam shell bead tips, or, (4) making a continuous piece without a clasp

· Add cord

· Buy pearls, care for them, string and restring them, store them

By the end of this book, you will have mastered hand-knotting pearls.

I know you are eager to begin. Let’s get started.

Available here: Ebook or Print

Table of Contents

Intro To Book and Acknowledgements, p. 4

1. Pearl Knotting Is For You, p. 11

2. Materials-Tools-Your Workspace, p. 16

3. All About Pearls, p. 24

4. All About Hand-Knotting Pearls, p. 37

5. Design Considerations, p. 57

6. Measurements, p. 66

7. Selecting and Testing Bead Cord, p. 71

8a. Var1-Attaching Directly To Clasp, p. 76

8b. Var2-Using French Wire Bullion, p. 105

8c. Var3-Using Clam Shell Bead Tips, p. 125

8d. Var4-Continuous Without Clasp, p. 148

8e. About Adding Cord, p. 168

9. Handling Contingencies, p. 171

10. Finishing Touches, p.176

Final Words Of Advice, p. 177

About Warren Feld, p. 180

_______________________________

Thank you. I hope you found this chapter useful.

Also, check out my website (www.warrenfeldjewelry.com).

Enroll in my jewelry design and business of craft Video Tutorials online. Begin with my ORIENTATION TO BEADS & JEWELRY FINDINGS COURSE.

Follow my articles on Medium.com.

Subscribe to my Learn To Bead blog (https://blog.landofodds.com).

Visit Land of Odds online (https://www.landofodds.com)for all your jewelry making supplies.

Check out my Jewelry Making and Beadwork Kits.

Add your name to my email list.

My ARTIST STATEMENT

My TEACHING STATEMENT.

My DESIGN PHILOSOPHY.

My PROFESSIONAL PROFILE.

My PORTFOLIO.

_________________________________

Posted in architecture, Art or Craft?, art theory, bead weaving, beads, beadwork, craft shows, creativity, design management, design theory, design thinking, jewelry collecting, jewelry design, jewelry making, pearl knotting, professional development, wire and metal, Workshops, Classes, Exhibits | Tagged: , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

Designing With The Brain In Mind:Perception, Cognition, Sexuality

Posted by learntobead on October 16, 2021

Warren Feld

Warren FeldJust now·21 min read

Abstract

Jewelry plays a lot of psychological functions for both the wearer and the viewer, so it is important to understand some things about perception and cognition and how the brain processes information. The jewelry designer plays with various design elements, let’s call these parts. The designer arranges these parts into a composition, let’s refer to this as the whole. The brain takes in information about, that is, attends to each part, and information about the whole, and assigns a meaning to these. The designer must anticipate all this, especially understanding Gestalt behavior. So the designer is not only dealing with aesthetic and functional considerations in their designs, but also the psycho-social-emotional triggers and filters these may represent. Some of these emotions may evoke a sense of sex, sexuality and sensuality. Last, jewelry designers must be very aware — metacognitive — of how they think through design, and be able to turn their experiences into thinking routines.

DESIGNING WITH THE BRAIN IN MIND

Jewelry plays a lot of psychological functions for the wearer, the viewer, and the buyer, so it is important to understand some things about perception and cognition and how the brain processes information. Jewelry is used to meet the individual’s needs for self-esteem and self-actualization. A sense of oneness and uniqueness. Or conversely, a sense of being a part of a larger group or community. A sense of survival and protection. A re-affirmation of values and perspectives. A connection to a higher power or spirituality. A sense of fantasy. An orientation to what is up and what is down and what is left and what is right.

The jewelry designer plays with various design elements, let’s call these parts. The designer arranges these parts into a composition, let’s refer to this as the whole. The brain takes in information about, that is, attends to each part, one by one, and then gathers information about the whole, and assigns a meaning to all these. Because of how the brain works, there may be several meanings that rise up to the surface, so the brain has to filter and prioritize these somehow. The resulting assigned meaning(s) results in some type of behavior. At its simplest level, the behavior is either one of placing attention or one of suggesting movement. The behavior, whatever it is, reaffirms for the observer that their goals are getting met or that there is some consistency and coherency with personal values and desires.

The designer must anticipate all this. So the designer is not only dealing with aesthetic and functional considerations in their designs, but also the psycho-social-emotional triggers and filters these may incur. Some of these emotions may evoke a sense of sex, sexuality and sensuality. Jewelry has sensual qualities. It has gender associations. It may symbolically represent what is safe and what is not to view or to touch.

PERCEPTION

Perceptions are ways of regarding, understanding or interpreting something. We perceive using our senses. We touch, we see, we feel, we hear, we smell, we sense positioning. Perceptions are subjective, and each person has their own subtle differences, even when responding to the same design or event. In fact, different people may have very different perceptions about the same design or event. Their assumptions, expectations and values may further color their perceptions.

Each person filters their perceptions with each move, each conversation, and each situation. Such filters may contingently alter perceptions. Perceptions are not fixed. They are very sensitive to the context and the situation. Any type of filter may result in selectively perceiving some things, but not others. In design work, our clients might selectively focus on brighter lights, louder sounds, stronger odors, sharper textures, silhouettes, proportions, placements and distributions, balance, harmony and variety. Selective perception can add some more muddiness to the interaction especially as designer and client try to find and develop the shared understandings necessary for success.

Adequately sharing understandings within a situation and among the people in it depends on the amount of information available to each person and how correctly they interpret it. Perception is one of the critical psychological abilities we have in order to survive in any environment.

The designer needs to be open to understanding how the client perceives the design tasks and proposed outcomes, and to adjust their own perceptions when the management of the relationship calls for this. There is no formula here. Each situation requires its own management strategy. Each designer is left with their own inventiveness, sensitivity, and introspective skills to deal with perceptions. But it comes down to asking the right questions and actively listening.

How does the client begin to understand your product or service?
Can the client describe what they think you will be doing and what the piece or product might look like when finished?
Can the client tell you how the finished piece or product will meet their needs and feelings?
Can the client tell you about different options?
How will they interpret what you want them to know?
What impressions do you want to leave with them?
Do they perceive a connection between you as a designer and your design work as proposed?
What levels of agreement and disagreement exist between your perceptions and theirs?
Can you get at any reasons which might explain their perceptions, and any agreement or difference?
Can you clear up any misperceptions?

The jewelry designer needs to distinguish between how the jewelry is perceived when it is not worn from when it is worn. When not worn, jewelry is an object admired and perceived more in art or sculptural terms. When worn, jewelry is an intent where perceptions about the jewelry as object are intertwined, complicated, distorted, amplified, subjugated — you get the idea — with the needs and desires of the individual as that person presents the self and the jewelry as worn in context. Either set of perceptions may support one another, or they may be contradictory.

COGNITION

Cognition involves how the brain processes our perceptions, particularly when these perceptions are incomplete or contradictory or otherwise messy or unresolvable. Cognition focuses on how the brain takes in existing knowledge and creates new knowledge. Cognition is both conscious or unconscious, concrete or abstract, intuitive or conceptual. Cognition may influence or determine someone’s emotions. Metacognition is your own awareness of your strategies and methods of thinking and problem-solving.

The brain takes in a lot of information all at once. The brain looks for clues. It compares clues to information stored in memory. Typically different parts of the brain will simultaneously process (e.g., parallel processing) either different clues or the same clues in different ways. Some information will have greater relevance or resonance than others. Some information will be rejected. Some information will be recategorized or reinterpreted.

You can think of all these mental processes going on in the brain as a huge, self-organizing undertaking, but happening within minute fractions of a second. What happens is very context- or situation-specific. The goal is the creation of some kind of understanding. This understanding will have some logic to it. It will be compatible with and reaffirm the individual’s memories, assumptions, expectations, values and desires. This understanding will typically result in some kind of behavioral response. The response will most often be related to attention or movement. The understanding and the behavioral response will likely get stored in memory.

Attention

The cognitive process starts with attention. Attention has to do with how we focus on some perceptual information, and not on others. A key function of attention is how to identify irrelevant data and filter it out, enabling other more significant data to be distributed to other parts of the brain for further processing.

Picture a piece of jewelry. This jewelry will present many stimuli — color, placement, proportion, balance, volume, positioning, its relation to the human body, the context within which it is worn, perhaps how comfortable it feels, symmetry, and the list can go on and on. Which perceptual clues are most important to the person who needs to decide whether to wear or buy it? Attention is the first cognitive step in determining how to answer this, though the observer does not always consciously grasp the specifics of what is going on.

There are two types of attention: (1) Orienting, and (2) Directing.

Orienting Attention works more reflexively. For example, we are prewired in our brainstem with a fear or anxiety response. This helps us reflexively avoid snakes and spiders. This anxiety response has major implications for how people initially respond to jewelry as it is worn.

Say a stranger is in a room and wearing a necklace. You approach the entrance to this room. You see the stranger who is wearing the jewelry. Your brain has to instantaneously evaluate the situation and determine if it is safe for you to approach and continue to enter the room, or whether you need to be fearful and turn around and flee. Jewelry can play a key role here.

The jewelry signals the primary information the brain needs to make this judgment. Perceptions are filtered to the very basic and very elemental. First the viewer wants to be able to make a complete circle around the jewelry. Anything which impedes this — an ugly clasp assembly, poor rhythm, colors that don’t work together, uncomfortable negative spaces — makes the brain edgy. If the brain gest edgy, the jewelry will start to get interpreted as boring, monotonous, unsatisfying, ugly, and we can go all the way to will cause death.

After the viewer makes that complete circle, a second perception kicks in and becomes key to whether the brain will signal it’s either OK to approach or, instead, you better flee. This second perception is a search for a natural place for the eye/brain to come to rest. In jewelry we achieve this by such things as placing a pendant in the center or graduating the sizes of the beads or doing something with colors.

In slightly more technical terms, the jewelry draws the observer to a focal point at which they can sense an equilibrium in all directions. The viewer feels physically oriented. The jewelry composition presents a coordinated form which connects spaces and masses within something that feels / looks / seems like a unique harmony. The observer is made to feel, as she or he is attenuating to how mass relates to space within the composition, that not only is each element of the jewelry related to the ones preceding or following it, but that each element is contributing to the concept of the whole — the jewelry form is greater than the sum of its parts. There is continuity. There is coherence. Space and mass are interdependent. The distinction among parts is removed. The brain likes this. It searches for it. It makes it restful.

The full experience of the jewelry only gains its full meaning within its total expression. The significance of the total jewelry composition unfolds as the observer moves about its separate parts. This expression, in turn, as it relates to the attention processes of cognition, gets reduced to the confluence of the two clues of (a) making a complete circle, and (b) finding a place to come to rest. If the two clues are satisfying, the jewelry is viewed as finished and successful, and the immediate environment is seen as safe.

The jewelry designer controls the limits and the possibilities for attention. If jewelry design were merely a matter of organizing a certain number of parts, the process would be very mechanical and not at all creative. All jewelry design would be equally good (or more likely, bad). The purpose of good jewelry design is to express particular meanings and experiences for the wearer, viewer or buyer to attend to. Jewelry design is only successful to the extent these are fully communicated to the observer, and are fully sensitive to how perception and cognition play out in our brains. That is, how the jewelry, through its design, enhances or impedes perception and cognition.

Directing Attention, the other type of attention, signals to the observer the possibilities for or constraints on movement. It is more deliberate rather than reflexive. It can divide one’s attention so that the person can pay attention to more than one thing at the same time. Using our example, there could be several strangers in the room, each wearing a different style and design of necklaces. As our observer walks into the room, attention can be shifted from one person / jewelry to another, or focused on one person / jewelry alone.

Directing Attention determines the potential for movement, so that the observer can anticipate the possibilities, or conceive the limits. With whatever piece of jewelry is worn, how freely or easily can the person shift positions, stand, run, dance, lay down? Will any type of movement change the appeal of the jewelry as worn? Is there anything about the design of the jewelry which anticipates different kinds of movements and positioning? Will the appeal of the jewelry remain should the wearer move to a different type of lighted situation or into a shadow? How much ease should be built into the construction of the piece?

The aesthetics of mass and space, such as the interplay of points, lines, planes and shapes, are rooted in a person’s psychology in order to arouse predictable patterns of experience. There seems to be a constant human need to perceive and attend to spatial relationships which distinguish harmony from cacophony. This psychological response to form most likely is connected to a person’s mechanisms for balance, movement and stature.

On the simplest level, observers use jewelry to assist them in knowing what is up and what is down, and what is left and what is right. Jewelry is used similarly in this directing sense as the floors, walls and ceilings are used towards this end in a room, or the horizon, landscape and trees are used outside. Without any clues about positioning, a human being would fall down and not be able to get up.

Picture, for example, how you might feel when the person standing next to you has one earring stuck in a 90 degree angle, or is only wearing one earring, or has a necklace mispositioned and slightly turned around the neck. You most likely feel a bit uncomfortable, perhaps uncomfortable enough to let the person know the jewelry needs to be adjusted in position, or that they seem to be missing an earring. Or perhaps not so comfortable to raise the issue publicly.

GESTALT: The Whole Vs. The Parts

One mechanism of cognition is called a Gestalt. At its root, Gestalt means that the whole composition is more meaningful than the meanings of its individual parts. There is a chicken and egg type of debate within the field about whether the person attends to the parts first with a stronger emergent whole, or whether the person needs to understand the whole first and use this understanding to interpret the parts. But for jewelry designers, we do not have to get into the debate here. Jewelry designers need to recognize that the resulting whole composition should always be more resonant, more finished-feeling and more successful than any of the individual design elements incorporated into the piece.

At its core, people are motivated to recognize entire patterns or configurations. If there are any gaps or flaws or mis-directions, the brain, cognitively, has a tendency to fill in the gaps or ignore the flaws or mis-directions. Where perceptual information does not exist or is somehow incomplete, the brain will fill in the blanks, so to speak, using perceptions about proximity, similarity, figure-ground, continuity, closure, and connection. This all involves work on the part of the brain. The brain may generate resistance towards this end, unless somehow coerced or tricked by aspects of the design choices themselves.

Jewelry will have a lot of gaps of light throughout. The individual beads and components do not blend into each other. They are distinct points of information. Instead, from the brain’s point of view, there are the equivalent of cliffs between each one. The brain, in effect, is asked to jump each cliff. It may be resistant to do so. The brain wants harmony. The brain wants to connect the dots into a smooth line. Or, if the composition were separate lines, the brain wants to connect the lines into a smooth, coherent plane. Or, if there were several distinct lines and planes, the brain wants to integrate these into a recognizable shape or form. But again, all this is not automatic. The brain will resist to do any more work than necessary. The designer will need to make smart, influencing, persuading choices in the design. The Gestalt mechanism is a set of these kinds of choices.

The brain needs to be sufficiently motivated to make the effort to harmonize the pattern or configuration. Gestalt is one of the cognitive, motivating, innate forces the brain uses. In music, when the brain hears part of a melody, it not only hears the notes, but also something else, let’s, for simplicity, call this a tune. This something else allows the brain to anticipate how the melody will continue. If the melody at this point changes key, the brain anticipates how the melody will play out in the new key as a similar tune but with different notes before it is played. How the brain interacts with a piece of jewelry has parallels.

One obvious example is the use of color simultaneity effects. Here the color of the next bead is affected by the color of the previous bead. Place a grey bead next to an orange bead, and the grey bead will take on some orange tones. Both beads get perceived as blended or bridged, even though, in reality, they are not. The observer generalizes the relationship between the two stimuli rather than the absolute properties of each. Take three beads, one emerald, one olivine and one grey. You would not normally find these two greens within the same composition. Place the grey bead between the two greens and, because of simultaneity effects, the two greens will harmonize as the grey forces a blending or bridging.

Jewelry designers need to learn the basic principles or laws of Gestalt. This allows them to predict the interpretation of sensation and explain the way someone will see their compositions. It allows them to anticipate how their jewelry will arouse predictable patterns of emotions and responses in others.

These laws can be used as guides for improving the design outcomes. They can be used to influence what design elements should be included. In what forms / volumes / placements / other attributes these design elements should take. How design elements should be arranged. How construction and function should best relate to aesthetics. How the jewelry should be worn. How the jewelry might coordinate with other clothes and accessories or contexts.

These principles are based on the following:

Principle of Proximity: In an assortment of elements, some which are closer together are perceived as forming groups. Emphasizes which aspects of elements are associated.

Principle of Similarity: Elements within an assortment are grouped together if similar. This similarity could be by color or shape or other quality. If the assortment is comprised of many elements, some similar and some dissimilar, the brain will sort this out so that the similar ones, no matter where placed within the assortment, will be perceived and grouped together.

Principle of Closure: People tend to perceive objects as complete, even when incomplete, rather than focusing on any gaps or negative spaces. When parts of the whole are missing, people tend to fill in the missing parts. The brain is preset to attempt to increase the regularity of sensation or the equilibrium within an experience or event.

Principle of Symmetry: The mind perceives objects as being symmetrical and forming around a center or focal point. Similar symmetrical elements will be grouped as one. The brain will attempt to make something which is asymmetric be perceived as symmetric as best as it can. The brain equates symmetry to coherency.

Principle of Common Fate: Elements are perceived as lines which move along the smoothest path. We perceive objects as having trends of motion. In jewelry design, think about something like rhythm. The beads are not moving in reality, but we perceive a direction and a quality of movement.

Principle of Continuity: Elements of objects tend to be grouped together, and therefore integrated into perceptual wholes, if they are aligned with an object. If two objects are next to each other or overlap, the brain tends to see each object distinctly as two separate wholes, if the elements within each object are aligned and continuous. Picture a 2-strand necklace. The brain will be primed to see these as 2 separate strands or wholes, rather than one whole necklace. Objects with abrupt and sharp directional changes will less likely be perceived as a whole.

Principle of Past Experience: Under some circumstances, visual stimuli are categorized according to past experience. Especially when faced with unknown or unfamiliar objects, the brain will resort to using past experience as a means for interpretation and whether to group elements within the objects as a whole.

DESIGNS CREATE EMOTIONS

There is a growing body of knowledge of the mechanics of sensory processes in cognition. A good design creates positive emotions for the viewer, wearer and/or buyer. Jewelry designers need a deeper understanding of types of emotions and their psychological underpinnings. People develop emotions with jewelry on three levels: (1) visceral (intrinsic), (2) behavioral (behavior), and reflective (reflection).

(1) Visceral (wants to feel): attractiveness, first impressions, feelings

(2) Behavioral (wants to do): usability, function, performance, effectiveness

(3) Reflective (wants to be): meaning, impact, shared experience, psycho-socio-cultural fit

METACOGNITION

Metacognition is an awareness of your own thought and problem-solving processes. It involves a search for patterns and the meanings behind them. It involves a lot of reflection. It involves a sensitivity to the choices made when confronting any unfamiliar or unknown situation. It concerns an awareness of why some choices worked better than others, or not at all.

For jewelry designers, it is important to take metacognition one step further. It is important to turn your experiences into thinking routines. These routines are fix-it strategies you bring with you when overcoming difficult or unfamiliar situations.

SEX, SEXUALITY, AND SENSUALITY

As a jewelry designer, you have to be very aware of the roles jewelry plays in sex, sexuality and sensuality. The act of sex. Everything leading up to it. Eroticism. Sex, however, differs from sensuality. Sensuality is how the jewelry brings out the sensual — the gratification of the appetite for visuals, sounds, tastes, smells and touch. Sensuality always makes jewelry desirable. But perhaps no two people experience the sensuality of a piece of jewelry in the same way.

These sex-sexuality-sensuality roles include,

(1) The Peacock Role

(2) The Gender Role

(3) The Safe Sex Role

One sexual role of jewelry is the Peacock Role. People wear personal adornment to attract the viewer’s attention. This means that the jewelry not only needs to be flashy enough, but also must contain culturally meaningful elements that the viewer will recognize and be sufficiently meaningful as to motivate the viewer to focus his or her attention on the jewelry and who is wearing it.

These culturally meaningful elements might include the use of color(s), talismans, shapes, forms. They clue the viewer to what is good, appealing, appropriate, and to what is not. But the jewelry must also provide clues to the individuality of the wearer — her (or his) personal style, social or cultural preferences, personal senses of the situation in which they find themselves.

Another of these sexuality roles — The Gender Role — is to define gender and gender-rooted culture. Certain jewelry, jewelry styles, and ways of wearing jewelry are associated with females, and others with males. Some are used to signal androgyny, others polyamory or gender fluidity. You can easily label which jewelry looks more masculine, and which more feminine. Some jewelry is associated with heterosexuality, and others with homosexuality. I remember when men, in a big way, started wearing one earring stud, it was critical to remember whether to wear the stud in the left ear lobe (hetero) or the right one (gay). For engaged and married women, it is important to recognize which style of ring is more appropriate, and which hand and finger to wear these on.

One of the most important sexuality roles, however — The Safe Sex Role — concerns the placement of jewelry on the body. Such placement is suggestive of where it is safe, and where it is unsafe, to look at or to touch the person wearing it. The length of the necklace, relative to the neck, the breast, or below the breast. How long the earring extends below the lobe of the ear. Whether the person wears bracelets. The size of the belt buckle. If a person has body piercings, where these are — the navel, the eyebrow, the nose, the lip.

Jewelry calls attention to areas of the body the wearer feels are safe to view or touch. It’s like taking a sharpie marker and drawing a boundary line across the body. Jewelry gives the viewer permission to look at these areas, say above the line, and not others below the line. Jewelry may give the viewer permission to touch these areas, as well. The wearer may want to call attention to the face, the neck, the hands, the ankle, but also to the breasts, the naval, the genital area.

We know that certain areas of the body are more sexually arousing than others. We know that different people are more or less comfortable with these areas on the body. But how does the wearer communicate that? How does the wearer communicate her (or his) personal views of what is sexually acceptable without having to physically and verbally interact with someone in order for that person to find out?

Jewelry. How jewelry is worn is one of the most critical and strategic ways for achieving this Safe-Sex goal. The linear form of the jewelry imposes a boundary line on the body. Do not cross it. And make no mistake, this boundary line separates the permissible from the impermissible, the non-erotic from the erotic, the safe from the unsafe. In a similar way the centerpiece focuses attention as if it were an arrow pointing the way. Jewelry is not just a style preference thing. It’s a safe-sex preference thing, as well.

When news of the AIDS epidemic first burst on-stage in the 1980s, you witnessed a very dramatic change in jewelry and how it was worn. Right before the AIDS epidemic, large long earrings were style. Remember shoulder dusters. But as awareness of AIDS spread, most women stopped wearing earrings for awhile. Then gradually, they began wearing studs. Then very small hoops. It wasn’t until around 2004 that some women wore the new chandelier earrings, and you saw longer earrings on actresses as they paraded down the red carpets of one award show after another.

Prior to AIDS, the necklace style was for longer necklaces — 24” to 36” long. The necklaces were full — multi-strand, lots of charms and dangles. Again, as awareness of AIDS spread, the necklace profile changed rapidly to no necklace at all, or to thin, short chains and chokers. You would typically find ONE charm, not many, on a necklace. Attention was pulled away from the genital area, the navel and the breasts, all the way back up to the face.

Prior to AIDS, necklaces and earrings were the best-sellers in my store. After AIDS, it became bracelets. Holding hands. Not necking. Not fondling. Not sexual intercourse. Holding hands was now the acceptable norm. This was safe.

Body piercings came into major vogue during the 1980s. And look what typically got pierced. Noses, belly buttons, eyebrows, lips. This of this as a big Body Chart for safe sex.

As society became more understanding of AIDS and how it spread, the jewelry became larger. It extended to more areas of the body. People wore more of it. But in 2009, it was still restrained, when compared to what people wore before the 1980s.

In the sexual hunt between the sexes, jewelry plays an important boundary-defining role. Let’s not forget about this. Jewelry, in some sense, is an embodiment of desire. Jewelry communicates to others how the wearer comes to define what desire might mean for the self. It communicates through placement, content, embellishment and elaboration.

Jewelry does not have to be visibly erotic, or include visual representations of sexual symbols, in order to play a role in sexuality and desire — a role that helps the hunter and the hunted define some acceptable rules for interacting without verbal communication.

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FOOTNOTES

Canel, Melissa. The Role of Perceptions in Conflict. April 9, 2016. As referenced:

https://prezi.com/auvtd6yylkkf/the-role-of-perceptions-in-conflict/

Dunlop, Cole. You Are Not Worried Enough About Perceptions and Assumptions. May 7, 2014. As referenced:
https://www.authoritylabs.com/worried-enough-perceptions-assumptions/

Gangwani, Prachi. “Sexual or Sensual? Here’s The Difference Between The Two,” 9/30/2016. As referenced in:
https://www.idiva.com/relationships-love/sex/sexual-or-sensual-heres-the-difference-between-the-two/16093050

Mausolf, Judy Kay. How To Avoid 4 Communication Pitfalls:
Assumptions, Perceptions, Comparison Expectations and Commitments. Spring, 2014. As referenced:
https://www.practicesolutionsinc.net/assets/docs/communication_pitfalls.pdf
Progressive Dentist Magazine

Nguyen, Hoang. “10 Psychological Rules I Used To Make Users Love At First Sight,” As referenced in:
https://blog.prototypr.io/10-psychological-rules-i-used-to-make-users-love-at-first-sight-55c71f99bfa1

Wellington, Kiki. “Sensual Vs. Sexual: Do you know the difference?”, 11/7/20. As referenced in:
https://medium.com/sex-with-a-side-of-quirk/the-difference-between-sensuality-and-sexuality-3b1c4f4315f2

Wikipedia: Cognition. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cognition

Wikipedia: Gestalt Psychology. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gestalt_psychology

Wikipedia: Perception. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Perception

_________________________________

Thank you. I hope you found this article useful.

Also, check out my website (www.warrenfeldjewelry.com).

Enroll in my jewelry design and business of craft Video Tutorials online. Begin with my ORIENTATION TO BEADS & JEWELRY FINDINGS COURSE.

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Other Articles of Interest by Warren Feld:

Resiliency: Do You Have The Most Important Skill Designers Must Have?

Disciplinary Literacy and Fluency In Design

Backward Design is Forward Thinking

How Creatives Can Successfully Survive In Business

Part I: The First Essential Question Every Designer Should Be Able To Answer: Is What I do Craft, Art or Design?

Part 2: The Second Essential Question Every Designer Should Be Able To Answer: What Should I Create?

Part 3: The Third Essential Question Every Designer Should Be Able To Answer: What Materials (and Techniques) Work Best?

Part 4: The Fourth Essential Question Every Designer Should Be Able To Answer: How Do I Evoke A Resonant Response To My Work?

Part 5: The Firth Essential Question Every Designer Should Be Able To Answer: How Do I Know My Design Is Finished?

Doubt / Self-Doubt: 8 Pitfalls Designers Fall Into…And What To Do About Them

Part 1: Your Passion For Design: Is It Necessary To Have A Passion?

Part 2: Your Passion For Design: Do You Have To Be Passionate To Be Creative?

Part 3: Your Passion For Design: How Does Being Passionate Make You A Better Designer?

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PART 1: THE JEWELRY DESIGNER’S ORIENTATION TO OTHER JEWELRY FINDINGS: PART 1: PREPARERS

Posted by learntobead on March 14, 2021

Continue Part 2: Controllers and Adapters

Enroll in my jewelry design and business of craft video tutorials online. Begin with my ORIENTATION TO BEADS & JEWELRY FINDINGS COURSE. There are 18 video modules including handouts, which this is one of.

Choosing and Using Other Jewelry Findings: 
Preparers

You have to approach the Jewelry Findings with a large measure of respect. “Jewelry Findings” are all the pieces that you use, including clasps, other than stringing materials and beads. They are called “jewelry findings”, because up until about 15 years ago, many of these pieces didn’t exist. People went to sewing notion stores, antique stores, flea markets, hardware stores, cannibalized old jewelry, wherever, and found things and made them work. Because many of these pieces are new, there is not a consensus on what some of these things should be called, so you have a lot of similarly looking pieces that go by different names. I’m sure over time, the name-game will shake out, and there will be more consistency.

Respect these jewelry findings. They are the pieces that get pulled and strained, torn at and squeezed, maligned and misused. These are the pieces that will make or break your piece of jewelry. Understand and respect them.

Many designers fail to make the full range of these pieces available to them. They either don’t know about them, or are afraid of them or think they might use them incorrectly. They too often limit their own design possibilities by relying on the same limited set of findings for everything they make. But the world of possibilities that these jewelry findings open up for us is endless.

Below is a list of other major jewelry findings used in bead stringing. I’ve tried to group them into three categories to make it a little easier to relate to.

PREPARERS:
 Things Which Prepare the Ends of Cords and Stringing Materials:

These kinds of jewelry findings are mostly used with thicker cords, like leather and waxed cotton, but also with cable wires. These enable you to create a “loop end” on each side of the cord or cable.

From the two loop ends you have created on each end of your cord, you then continue to create the rest of your clasp assembly. If the loop is big enough (to give you jointedness), or looks substantial enough (like it won’t break from movement), you can attach the clasp directly to the loop. If not, you will want to attach your clasp/ring to jump or split rings, and these, in turn, to your loop ends.

You usually try to match the size of the interior opening on the jewelry finding to the thickness of your cord or cable. For some of these pieces, this match is more important than others.

You always put some glue on your cord or cable before you stick them into the piece. You use glue because all these cords are oily, and some will sweat, as well. They will slip out of the findings — even with tight crimping or clamping — because they are slippery. That’s why you use glue.

I recommend using a glue like E6000 or Beacon 527. Don’t use super glue. Super glue (or the jeweler’s version called G-S Hypo Cement) dries like glass, so the bond will shatter like glass, because all jewelry moves. Also, after it shatters, the bond looks like a broken coke bottle. E6000 and Beacon 527 dry like rubber, so they act as a shock absorber, when the jewelry moves.

CRIMP ENDS

These come very fancy or plain. They come with a small opening to use with cable wires, and wider and wider openings to use with leather or waxed cotton, or even braided leather.

These pieces have a loop at the end of a tube. The tube has 3 bands. The first and third are decorative. The center band is meant to be crushed and crimped. You put some glue on the cord or cable — any glue except super glue — stick it into the tube, and take a pliers and crush the center band as flat as you can get it.

When you crush the middle band, visually, it looks like it is part of a pattern of beads. It doesn’t look like an ugly crushed piece of metal.

Some crimp ends come with a hook, so that you attach a loop on one end and the hook on the other, to create a hook and eye clasp.

These and clamps (see below) work best for preparing the ends of cable wires and thicker cords. Crimp ends tend to be on the pricier side; clamps are very inexpensive. Both hold well, relying on both the glue and the crimp.

CHAIN/CORD ENDS

These pieces have a loop at the end of a split tube. For chain, these are soldered on. For cords or cable, you put some glue on (again never super glue), stick it into the split tube, and take a pliers and crush snug, NOT flat. What’s holding these on is the glue. If you crush flat, you lose the bond. Should tightly match cord thickness to interior diameter.

We need to crush snug because we want the glue to adhere to all the interior surfaces. If there are any gaps where the glue has not adhered, the bond will break.

These are terrible pieces, because it is difficult to achieve that perfect bonding with the glue.

END CAPS

These pieces come in just a few sizes, but many designs. Those pictured are very industrial looking, but they come very decorative, as well. Some pieces have a hole at the end instead of a loop and are labeled “end caps,” but technically, these should be called either a cone or a bead cap. Usually, the interior opening size of the end cap will be listed, such as ID=6mm or ID=8mm or ID=12mm. You coordinate this with the width of whatever you are trying to slip into the end cap. But because of the shape of the end cap, there still may be fit issues.

These pieces have a loop at the end of a hard metal tube. The loop is either an eyelet or a fixed loop. You put some glue (not super glue) on cord or cable and stick in. The glue is all that holds. Should tightly match cord thickness to interior diameter.

Because it is important, for the bond to hold, to get the glue to adhere to all the interior surfaces, and you cannot crush the ends snug, you need to put a lot of excess glue on the cord when you stick it in. And you need to be prepared to wipe away the excess glue that bleeds back out.

You never attach your clasp directly to these pieces. You need an additional intervening ring — jump ring or split ring or soldered ring — between the end cap and your clasp component.

CLAMPS
 Ribbon or Bar Clamps:

These clamps are folded metal with a loop in the center edge, come in different lengths, and have teeth. These are for ribbons or fabric. You don’t use glue, because the glue will bleed into the ribbon or fabric.

You fold over the end of the ribbon or fabric, making the end pretty, and stick into the clamp, and use a pliers to crush firm. If your material is wider than the clamp you have, you would make several folds in the end, like you would when gift-wrapping a package.

Foldover or Wing Clamps:

These come in a few different sizes, some with square loops, some with round loops. Some have plain backs; some have patterned backs.

These typically are a loop on top of flat metal with two wings that fold over. You put some glue (not super glue) on the cord or cable, sit in the saddle between the two wings, and use a large pliers, and crush the two wings over each other and over the cord. Crush as flat as you can get it. This is not done in one movement because the wings are stiff and strong. You usually take your pliers and move then to one side, then the other, then back, until you get the two wing position over each other, and you can crush them flat.

One mistake people make with this piece is that they crush snug, not flat. Where the wings overlap each other, this leaves an air passage. Again, we want our glue to adhere to all the interior surfaces. If you crush snug, this air passage will weaken the bond, and your cord will pull out. You have to crush as flat as you can get it, to force the glue up into that air passage.

You can use one clamp for multiple strands, if you wish. You can seat multiple strands of cable wire or leather or whatever into the saddle of one clamp.

These and the crimp ends work the best for preparing the ends of cable wires and thicker cords. Crimp ends are pricier; clamps are cheap. Crimp ends have a design impact; clamps are very utilitarian.

COIL ENDS

Coil ends have an open ended loop at the top of a tightly wound coil. I don’t like the way these look after they are crushed onto the cord, and they don’t hold up well. One advantage is that the coil functions as a spring, and absorbs a lot of the excess force place on the piece, that comes from movement.

With coil ends, you put some glue, (but not super glue), on the cord, shove it into the coil. You take a chain-nose pliers and crush the first two rings of the coil onto the cord. If you crush too hard, you’ll slice the cord. If you don’t crush hard enough, the cord will pull out.

The way the loop was designed to work, was that you take a pliers, move the open ring to the side, slip on your clasp or ring, and, using the pliers, move the open ring to a closed position again. DON’T DO IT THIS WAY. When you move the loop back and forth, it breaks off easily. These loops are rather brittle. SO, the way you would use this, is that you would take a jump ring or split ring, and attach this to the loop and your clasp piece. As long as you don’t move this loop wire, it stays strong.

Coil ends come in two sizes in terms of the width of the interior diameter. If your cord is thicker than the smaller size, see if you can make it work with this smaller size, anyway. The larger size is more awkward to use. Say you had leather cord. You can take a single-edge razor blade and cut the end at an angle, put some glue on the cord, and shove it into the smaller piece.

BEAD CAPS

This is a decorative cup-like or bowl-like piece, with a hole in the center. This piece is originally used as a decorative element, to cover one or both sides of a bead, as you string your beads on. However, you can adapt this piece to be an end. You might have multi-strands, where you tie them all off together, and use the bead cap to hide the mess. You might have a bead crocheted rope, and again, use the bead cap to give your piece a decorative end. You glue the bead cap on. Then you take an independent wire or thread, attaching it to your piece about 2–3” from the end, and running it through your piece, through the cap, then finishing off the rest of your clasp assembly.

What’s nice here are that there are hundreds of styles, whereas the more typical jewelry findings look very utilitarian.

BELL CAPS

A bell cap is a bead cap with a loop on it. This is a decorative cup-like or bowl-like piece, with a loop sticking above the center. This piece is originally used to adapt something, like gluing it to the top of a crystal pendant or bead, to be a drop. But it can be adapted to use as a fancy end-cap. Use glue here. Attach the clasp assembly to an additional jump ring or split ring. Again, there are many, many decorative styles in bell caps, so you won’t have to rely on the typical and very plain specialized jewelry findings.

The arms on the bell cap are somewhat independent, and can be pushed into the shape of whatever piece they are attached to. So, for example, you can take a rough stone, position the bell cap at the top, push on the arms to shape them to the stone, then put glue on each arm and attach the bell cap to the piece.

BEAD TIPS (aka, KNOT-COVERS)

These pieces are used to hide knots. One style has a cup with a tongue attached. Another style ends with a loop, not a tongue. The most widely used style — Clam Shell Bead Tip (or double-cup) — has two half cups that close over the knot, and a tongue extending from one end. While some people use these pieces with cable wire, they are primarily designed for use with needle and thread.

These take some practice in learning how to use them. On the first side of your piece, you string on the bead tip, say the clam shell. You tie a bunch of knots in the tail, so your knot is bigger than the hole in the bead tip, and won’t slip out. Cut off the tail. Put a drop of glue on the knot. Here you would use something like superglue. Superglue will make the knot stiff, so it won’t pull through the hole. E6000 will make the knot rubbery, and it will be able to contort and work its way through the hole. Trim the tail. Press the two halves of the clamp together over the knot, so it looks like a bead. Take the tongue, fold it over and through the ring on your clasp, and back to itself, so it forms a loop.

On the other side of your piece, here’s the tricky part. You need to keep your tension on the thread, so the thread doesn’t show when you’re finished. You need to tie a bunch of knots, and complete the rest of the process. This is a 3-hand operation, but you only have 2 hands.

Here you slide the bead tip onto your thread. Use one hand to hold everything tight. Take an awl or a round nose pliers — something where the width graduates into a point, and put the tip where you want your finished knot to end up. Tie an overhand knot over the awl or pliers up high on the wider part of the jaws. Tighten the loop of this knot. Tighten the tension on your thread. Move the loop down the awl or pliers a bit, moving towards the narrow pointed end. Tighten this loop. Check your overall thread tension. Move the loop down a little bit more. Tighten this loop. Check your overall thread tension. When you loop gets to the tip of your awl or pliers, you need to pull your knot tightly, and push the awl or pliers out of the way, AND, you want to maintain the thread tension in your piece. Tie a bunch more knots. Put glue on the knot. Trim the tail. Close the clamp. Loop the tongue into the other part of your clasp. This takes about 5 tries before your body gets that muscle memory to do the task easily and correctly.

When I started in jewelry making, almost every piece used bead tips. I’m not a big fan of this type of piece today. The tongue when bent over to hook and secure the clasp is not jointed enough. It doesn’t leave a big enough loop, so there is tension and these tongues break off. Today, you can tie your piece to the clasp using knots, then slip a crimp cover over the knot, so it looks finished as if there were a bead there. This is both more secure and easier to do.

Some alternatives to tying a globular knot: (1) with needle and thread work, you can tie off an end to an 11/0 seed bead, and have your clam-shell enclose the seed bead, and (2) with cable wire, you can crimp on a crimp bead on the end of your wire, and have your clam-shell enclose the crushed crimp bead.

CONES

Cones come in many shapes and designs, but basically look like a megaphone. These are used to finish off the ends of jewelry, often to hide a lot of messy knots or unfinished ends inside the cone.

One style of cone is called a 3-to-1 cone (also, 2-to-1 up to 11-to-1). This is a flattened cone, with one hole on one side, and 3 holes on the other. This is supposed to help you finish off a 3-strand piece in a decorative way. You pull each of 3 strands through the 3 holes on one side, and out together through the one hole on the other side. For two of the strands, you tie a large knot or double-knot, cut off the excess tail, and let the knot fall back into the box of the cone. I’ve only known one person in my life who could accomplish this, and maintain sufficient string tension so that none of the cable wire showed on the other side of the cone and as part of the bracelet. For the 3rd string, you would continue creating your clasp assembly. This is a good piece in theory, but not practice. Most people end up tying the three strands into this big, globular knot, and then trying to finish off the clasp assembly, only to have the clasp assembly take up 25–30% of their finished bracelet.

Regular cones are used like lampshades to hide some ugliness. With the typical cone style — that megaphone looking piece, the way you are supposed to use this piece is as follows: You take a soldered ring, something small enough so that it will fit far enough back into the cone, that the cone will hide any of the finishing knots or ends. If we start with a 3-strand necklace, you would tie off each strand to one side of the soldered ring. Then you would take a separate, independent cable wire, hard wire or thread, whatever you are stringing with, and tie it off in a knot to the other side of the soldered ring, pull the whole works into the cone, with the stringing material coming out the narrow end. Then you would finish off your clasp assembly.

The soldered ring, in this case, acts as a “support system”, creating jointedness. Otherwise, without this ring or support system, the cone could not support the resulting stress and strain. Since all the pieces are metal — cable wire, cone, clasp, crimp — , and these would be too stiff and would not move easily, and, as you now know very well, when you bend metal back and forth, it breaks.

EYEGLASS HOLDER ENDS

A major category of jewelry are eyeglass leashes. You make an eyeglass leash by attaching an eyeglass holder end to the eyeglasses, making a string of beads, attaching the string of beads to a split ring, and attaching the split ring to the eyeglass holder end. You never attach the beadwork directly to the holder ends. Eyeglass leashes take a huge beating, as they are worn, and you need to create as much jointedness as possible, so you don’t ruin someone’s eyeglasses, have the lenses shift position within the frames, or have the leash break. In fact, we want to use a split ring — about 10mm or 12mm in diameter — that is a little larger visually than you might feel comfortable with.

Eyeglass leash holder ends are made from round rubber thong (usually black or clear), flat vinyl (usually black or clear), or elastic cord (comes in many colors). The round rubber thong is the most durable. Elastic cord is not durable at all. There are various style options. Most come with what is called a “coil center”. When the eyeglass leashes are worn, the rubber, vinyl or elastic cord sweats, both from the humidity found in the air, as well as the wearer’s own body sweat. Coil centers tend to slip, so these don’t work well with narrow arms on eyeglasses. Other eyeglass leashes come with a bead center, usually a 6mm glass roller bead. The beads don’t slip.

The ones with bead centers are a little more expensive than the ones with coil centers. One company bought the ones with the coil centers, slipped these off what is basically a rubber band, and slipped on a 6mm glass roller bead. They took a $0.45 cent piece and sold them for $4.00 a piece. People thought they were magic because the beads didn’t slip, so were willing to pay the premium. You can do the same thing. There are about 300 colors of roller beads, so you can personalize your line.

WATCH BAND COMPONENTS

These pieces are used to adapt watch faces so you can make beaded watch bands off them. They consist of a tube designed to slip over the spring bar on each end of a watch face, and some kind of loop or series of holes that come off the tube. Beaded watch bands have become so popular, that now you can purchase watch faces designed specifically to attach these to them.

CRIMP BEADS, CRIMP COVERS, and HORSESHOE WIRE PROTECTORS

Crimp beads come in many styles, sizes and finishes. These are used to secure cable wires to clasps. The crimping process involves crushing the crimp onto the cable wire, first separating the tail wire from the main wire, then creating a lock, and finally re-shaping it so it looks like a bead again.

Crimp Covers

These are U-shaped beads that slip over the crushed crimp. They are used like a lampshade to hide something that is ugly.

You attach the crimp cover in two steps. First, using the tips of your crimping pliers, you push the two sides of the U together, so you have a pretty bead. These are made of a soft metal, so you don’t want to push too hard, or you will crush them. After you get the two sides to meet, you’ll find that the lip on either side doesn’t meet up perfectly.

So, Second, at this point, you return the crimp cover to your crimping pliers, this time resting it between the top notches (thus, furthest from your hand) in each jaw. This will help preserve the roundness of the crimp cover as you manipulate it. Gently push the jaws to force the lips to meet more perfectly. You can slide crimp covers over your crushed crimps. You can also use these to slide over any knots, to hide the knots.

Horseshoe wire protectors

These serve several purposes. (1) It forces you to leave the correct size loop in the cable wire, so that you have the appropriate support system or jointedness. Without the loop, you would be pushing the crimp all the way to the clasp. This is a No-No. You never push the crimp all the way to the clasp — this creates stiffness with metal parts, and general movement would cause these to break.

(2) The horseshoe also makes the loop more finished looking — better than a bare-wire loop. Most people hate a bare, exposed loop. The horseshoe fools the eye/brain here, making it think that the loop is finished and more organically a part of the whole composition.

(3) The horseshoe prevents the cable wire from folding into a V over a period of time and wear. If the wire were to change from an arched loop to a V-loop, the wire then would more easily bend back and forth and break.

There are many choices to make when selecting crimp beads:

Crimp Beads

tube vs. round 
 no difference in “holdability”, but most people prefer the tubes

THE SILVER COLOR ISSUE: sterling silver vs. silver plated vs. silver plated crimp with sterling silver crimp cover vs. argentium silver crimps
 Silver-plated crimps are usually plated over brass. Brass has a very high degree of integrity as a jewelry making metal. The plating wears off relatively quickly, and your crimps will look black — basically tarnished brass. More recently, these plated crimps have been plated over aluminum, which can break from the force of the crimping pliers.

Sterling softens at body temperature. If your crimp is resting on the wrist or the neck, there is some risk of it softening and weakening. This risk is minimal, however. If you’ve crimped correctly, you shouldn’t lose sleep over this. I prefer to use the sterling silver crimps; they are often made better than the other crimps.

You can also use a silver-plated crimp to crimp, and slide a sterling silver crimp cover over it.

Argentium has the same silver content as sterling but does not soften as easily at body temperature. These are a lot more expensive than sterling.

crushing the crimp and re-rounding it vs. crushing, then using crimp cover

Some people don’ t like the look of the re-rounded crimp, or feel uncomfortable trying to re-round them. The crimp covers add about $0.50 — $1.00 more to each piece.

plain tube vs. twisted tube
 The twisted tubes (sometimes called Tornado or Cyclone crimps) are a little more expensive than the plain ones. When you crush the twisted tubes, they look decorative enough that you don’t have to re-round them. You definitely need to re-round the plain ones.

Regular or long tube vs. short or half tube
 Short tubes or half tubes are primarily used in pieces like illusion necklaces, where you have a cluster of beads, and the cord shows, another cluster of beads, the cord shows, etc. Half tubes are used on either side of the clusters to keep the beads in place. When you crush the half tube, the volume of space it takes up is not noticeable. When you crush the regular sized tube, its volume of space is too noticeable and detracts from the general look of the piece. One mistake people make with the short or half tubes, is that, when they use them to finish off the ends of jewelry, their mind tells them to use 2 or 3 of them so that they will “hold better.” A crimp is a crimp, and if you crimped correctly, there is no difference in holdability between the short and longer tubes. Each crushed crimp you add becomes like a little razor blade. All jewelry moves, so you’re increasing the chances, by using more than one crimp on each end, that one of these crimps will cut through the cable wire. One crimp on either end is enough.

variations on quality/grade of crimp beads
 Basically, you get what you pay for!

Here’s how crimp beads are made: You start with a sheet of metal. You roll the metal into a tube. You buff along the seam where the two sides meet, so that it looks like it’s been soldered together. However, there’s really a seam there.

So often, people come into our shop and tell sad tales of failed crimps and broken bracelets and necklaces. They blame themselves. They blame the pliers. But they never blame the crimp beads. In most cases, the crimp is at fault.

Cheap crimps, usually bought in small packages, usually at craft stores, are not made well. When you crush these, they tend to split along the seam. Sometimes you can see the split. Othertimes, you can’t quite see that the two sides of the tube have started to separate. Your cable wires pull out. Or your crimp edges have cut into the cable wire.

An A-grade crimp, usually costing about 3 times what the cheap crimps cost, can hold up to your initial crushing, as well as another 8 or so clamping down on it during the re-rounding process.

There are heavy-duty or A+ grade crimps. These run about 6–8 times what the cheap crimps do. You don’t have to worry about any splitting, no matter how much you work the crimp bead with your pliers.

using 1 crimp on each end vs. using more than 1 crimp on each end
 Using 1 crimp on each end of your piece is sufficient. Using more than 1 crimp on each end is too risky. Sometimes you mind, or your best friend, thinks that is 1 is good, 2 or more would be better. No! When you crush your crimp onto the wire, it becomes like a little razor blade. All jewelry moves, so your crimp is constantly trying to saw through the cable. Using more than one crimp on each end increases the chances that one will saw through. All you are doing is adding razor blades.

size of crimp

Manufacturers are inconsistent in how they label the sizes of crimp beads. In general:

2mm is the average size For .014, .015, .018, .019 cable wires

1.5mm is small For .010 and .012 cable wires

2.5mm is slightly more than averg For .019 and .024 cable wires

3.0mm is large For .024 cable wires, or thicker cords, or bringing

more than 1 strand thru at a time

4.0mm and larger For thicker cords, or bringing 2+ strands thru

Continue Part 2: Controllers and Adapters

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Other Articles of Interest by Warren Feld:

Cleaning Sterling Silver Jewelry: What Works!

What Glue Should I Use When Making Jewelry?

Why Am I So Addicted To Beads?

A Very Abbreviated, But Not Totally Fractured, History of Beads

The Martha Stewart Beaded Wreath Project

When Choosing Colors Has You Down, Check Out The Magic Of Simultaneity Effects

The Use of Armature In Jewelry: Legitimate or Not?

Pearl Knotting Warren’s Way

Organizing Your Craft Workspace…Some Smart Pointers

You Don’t Choose Clasps, You Choose Clasp Assemblies

Know Your Anatomy Of A Necklace

Mini Lesson: Making Stretchy Bracelets

Mini Lesson: Making Adjustable Slip Knots With Thicker Cords

Mini Lesson: How To Crimp

Mini Lesson: Attaching End Caps, Cones, Crimp Ends

Mini Lesson: Brick Stitch

Mini Lesson: Flat Even Count Peyote

Mini Lesson: Ndebele Stitch

Mini Lesson: Petersburg Chain

Mini Lesson: Right Angle Weave

Jewelry, Sex and Sexuality

Everyone Has A Getting Started StoryThe Nature-Inspired Creations of Kathleen

The Jewelry Designer’s Orientation To Glass Beads

The Jewelry Designer’s Orientation To Lampwork Beads

The Jewelry Designer’s Orientation To Crystal Beads

The Jewelry Designer’s Orientation To Seed and Cylinder Beads

The Jewelry Designer’s Orientation To Choosing and Using Clasps

How To Design An Ugly Necklace: The Ultimate Designer Challenge

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Thank you. I hope you found this article useful.

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