Monday, June 22, 2009

I just noticed a shop on Etsy which started only a few months before I did, the shop makes very simple wire wrapped jewelry using only silver, gold and gemstones. A good example of this shop's pricing scheme is a very simple sterling earring finding and a tiny gold vermeil finding hanging off of it. Shop price 14$. Time to make 5 min or less. Shop cost, I'll be VERY generous and say 3$.

They now have over 800 sales in about the same amount of time as I have been on Etsy. All of the work is very simple quick wire wrap with little labor involved.

On my end my work takes 5 hours to 2 days or more to make a design and I find it impossible to price!

I'm a little jealous of the success of that Etsy shop.

But WHY do I make jewelry? Would I really want to be like that shop and make things that would not give me pleasure or satisfaction in the creation of it?

If I answer honestly I have to say I want BOTH. I would love to quit my day job and do only what I have a passion for, that would involve being financially successful somehow. I doubt I would would ever like churning out very simple jewelry however.

I have had friends or family offer advice on things I can make, one friend says that beaded eye glass holders (the type that go around the neck) would sell very well- I drew back in horror thinking "that's not at all what I am talking about, I don't want to make things simply for the sake of money, I hunger for some art, I would be bored to tears and unenspired, I want to be an excellent wire artist".

Today my mother saw my new large ring designs and immediately said "is that what is in fashion right now"? I thought the question was rather curious because it implied that if one makes jewelry that they somehow must follow trends rather than paving their own path.

With these thoughts in mind, this week I have considered our troubled economic times and designed for a lower price market. I took some design ideas that I have been working on and simplified them or changed out components to make some affordable jewelry. Affordable jewelry that speaks to me and still makes me proud.

In my design play this week I stumbled across a curious combo of labradorite and brass, which I am really loving:

I'm not looking to make affordable designs with just a bunch of 'cheap' materials either.

This ring is made of sterling and rubies. It was difficult to photograph and the sterling looks dark, but its' way cuter in person and I think it's the best bargain in the shop!

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