Monday, February 28, 2011

Groove Wrapped Alternative Metal Series

This new series of pendants is being created with our current economy in mind. With the prices of precious metals rising, and the cost of daily living, having a new luxury is getting further and further out of our reach. With that in mind, I am creating a huge series of alternative metal pendants & necklaces, that fit just about any budget, even in today's fast rising cost of everything in our lives.

     These new pendants are also being created in a new style, the groove wrap. This is not a new concept, but it is new to me. I have seen these done in a more simple fashion, most having absolutely no frills, or feminine aspects to them, making them primarily for the more male side of things.
      I wanted to create something completely different, something simple, yet elegant, and something that no one else is doing with this style of pendant. The Mookaite pendant on the left is a prime example of such a wrap. It's seemingly suspended appearance, adds a certain mystery to the design, making people want a closer look. People will wonder how in the world that stone stays put, and doesn't come loose or fall out.....but it wont, not ever. These groove wraps are amazing in their simplicity, and elegance, and give a whole new meaning to the economy jewelry fashion world. These wraps not only give elegance, and beauty to less expensive jewelry, they also add stability, and a way to show off more of the stone, that is only otherwise seen in a prong style wrap. 

The Pendant on the right is an Indonesian Coral gemstone, wrapped in solid bare red brass wire. This is yet another prime example of how a pendant can be seemingly suspended in air. Red brass is the closest you can get to the color of gold, without the expense of buying gold. It is an excellent alternative for jewelry making, sturdy, strong, and beautiful. No one will ever suspect it's not really gold. Every one will however, want a closer look at this piece, as it just "hangs" in air around your neck.

Alternative metals are a wonderful way to save money, and still have something beautiful in the process. German silver wire is another metal I use, and is also known as nickel silver. Nickel silver contains about 5% nickel, and is a copper alloy metal. Most people who are allergic to nickel, have symptoms when it pierces the skin, as when you wear earrings. This metal is just a gorgeous replacement for sterling, at about 1/4th the cost, and still provides those who love silver to have their favorite color metal in their jewelry pieces. 

The Burro Creek purple Agate on the left is a prime example of how German silver wire can lend the look of silver you want, without the expense, and still have the elegant appearance you desire in a piece of jewelry. Again, guaranteed to never fall out of it's setting, people will wonder just how in the world that is hanging there, and will want a closer look at it.
     If you are looking for something truly original, something you have never seen before, then please visit my shop on Etsy, you will find so many of these pendants, and more of them being created every single day, it will amaze you. If you love stone jewelry, but hate paying the high prices out there today, and you need an alternative, then please take a look around, you are bound to find something that will please your eye, while giving you the money saving advantages you need, in today's trying times.


Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Why I can Keep my Prices Low

     I keep getting asked how and why I price my pendants and jewelry so low. I decided to write a little bit about the how and why, because I think it is important for folks to know. Especially my fellow talented artists, who also make jewelry, and think I am trying to undercut them.

     First of all, and the main thing in low pricing, is expenses. I have very little expense in my jewelry. A lot of artists have to buy there gemstones, or cabochons, that are similiar to mine. I don't. I have a lot of rocks, right out behind my house! I cut, cab, groove...all myself (90% of the time), so there is no money spent on any stones. Every once in awhile I see a slab of a rock I just can't live without...and I will buy it, but not very often. So...that eliminates a big expense that a lot of folks have....I enjoy cutting the stones, and cabbing them myself, to me it is just part of the creative processes in creating the pieces I make.

Second, I would like to assure everyone in the jewelry business, and anyone considering buying my pieces, that, my stones, and wire wrapping may be worth just as much as yours, maybe not. Either way, what matters to me MOST of all, is that I continue to enjoy what I am doing. I don't want this to turn in to a "job" per many of you out there actually ENJOY your jobs? I want this to be something that I do, because I love it, not because I have to get up at 5 a.m. every day, and start working, get off at a specific time of day...blah blah blah.....thank you...I can do without all that. Today maybe I feel like doing something new, or maybe I feel like cutting cabs....or maybe just a stroll down to the rock pit to hunt rocks....but it's my "choice" in what I do every day, not something that is dictated to me, by a schedule, or market demands.

Third...I have no job, and no little children to run after, nothing "pressing" to do every day....I can pretty much do what I please, for the most part. So, there is no demand for my time, like a LOT of stay at home moms, because I don't have those things to worry about. I completely understand tho, where those folks are coming from, and I see their point, because I used to be just like them.

Fourth....I used to decorate cannot tell you the thousands of cakes I decorated from home, and it was very very good money earned, I have all this cake decorating stuff, and I just do not want to do it any more, because I burnt myself out on it. I turned it in to a job you see....ready and available any time someone needed a cake done...any day of the week....and I did it. In the end tho.....I just didn't enjoy it any more. I do not want to turn this in to "that"....I enjoy making the jewelry too much.

Finally, and maybe this is the most important part of it all, if I don't have a lot of money invested (except the wire) and I enjoy what I do...truely enjoy it deep down...and I get to choose how I spend my time doing it (which area) ......then how can I possibly charge you a fortune for one of my pieces, and still sleep at night? I mean, I am NOT by any means knocking anyone out there who charges more than I do, go for it I say, and I do wish you all the luck and prosperity in the world....I just can't personally do it. It doesn't make you wrong at all, it just means it's not right for me.

Bottom line is, I charge what I know will make the money back I have invested in wire, so I can buy more, and extra for my time. I just wanna be able to buy more wire, or blades to cut the rocks, so I can keep going, and keep making more. I am not in this to "get rich"...I just wanna be able to keep doing it.

Is this wrong? Well, Maybe it is, maybe it isn't.....but I have also been in retail sales for over 20 years, and have run successful businesses, made a lot of money at them all in the past.....and I know what works for me. In retail, the rule of thumb is NOT to sell 1 piece of merchandise for MORE money....then you only have 1 piece of your product out there in the world, the rule is simply this: Sell cheaper, sell more, and more of YOUR BRAND is out there for even more people to see. This same phylosophy worked so well for me in the cake business.......the local store sold a cake, same exact size I did, for 45.00......mine was 25.00....who do you think sold more cakes? guessed give you a simple example of this concept....I was making 400 a week in 25.00 birthday cakes, in a town of 7,000 people......I'd say the idea works, wouldn't you?

In the end, we all have to do what works best for ourselves. Not everyone would agree with me, in fact...a lot would not agree. But when you apply ONLY logical thinking to the process, this makes sense. did all these big chain stores get so rich, so fast...........think about it.

Good luck to you all in your endeavors, I seriously hope everyone is a huge success at what they do.