Why is Handmade Jewelry So Expensive?

If I can go to the “Department” Store, I can get a piece of nice jewelry for half the price!  Why should I buy something handmade? Poppy Jasper Necklace This is a question that can drive an artist to depression, but maybe it is a matter of changing perception!  So why buy handcrafted or handmade jewelry?

floral plume agateLet’s take a look.  This Floral Plume Agate piece is handmade from start to finish.  The stone was mined in the Turkey.  A miner sold the rough stone to a lapidary artist, who made it into a beautiful cabochon, finding the best part of the stone and creating this beauty.  I come along and purchased this stone from him, and I “dressed” it up using sterling silver.  The silver is purchased, then it is formed using techniques such as rolling, stamping, soldering, shaping and forming.

The silver is designed around this individual stone.  It is a one of a kind stone–not mass produced, and you cannot find the exact shape, color or design of this stone.  Therefore, the silver around it is also unique.  Your jewelry is NOT worn by anyone else.  Opal Ring

At the department store, the jewelry is designed by a jeweler, then most often sent overseas to be created, with stones that are mass produced, and the silver is molded by machine into a form, then filed, sanded and polished by skilled laborers.  No one cares about the jewelry they are making. And they are not making it for “you” a particular customer.

Silver Lace Jasper Necklace
When you purchase something handmade from start to finish, and it is something you like, it is something you can have that came from the soul of the artist.

Rhodochrosite Dangle earrings
It is a connection that youcannot get from a mass produced item.  In the case of my stone jewelry, it is the soul of 2 artists–the one who created the stone, and the one who created the silver dressing around the stone.

What is that worth it to you?

Bridewell stone Necklace

Lynne Patnode is a jewelry artist whose main focus is to bring jewelry from nature to you.  She selects beautiful stone cabochons and sets them into sterling silver, focusing on bringing nature’s beauty into a wearable art jewelry form.  She also uses other materials such as glass, shells, and lab created stones and uses them for nature inspired theme jewelry.  All of her jewelry is handcrafted in her Connecticut art studio, and all pieces are one of a kind.  You can shop for her jewelry in her Etsy Shop.  You can also follow her latest news by liking her SilverSpiral Creations Facebook Page.  Find her on Instagram @SilverSpiral1, and Twitter @SilverSpiral1

How to Shop for Art Jewelry Gifts in this Holiday Season

Small Turquoise Cuff BraceletIf you are like me, you find that shopping for close family and friends can be a bit daunting, especially if that person wants and loves art jewelry.

 

So how do you go about finding that perfect one of a kind jewelry gift for that person?  Where do you even begin?

 

When you think about it, jewelry is a very personal thing.  When you are giving jewelry as a gift, it is usually because you really know a lot about that person.  For example, you probably know their favorite colors, whether they are casual or formal, and how they live.  Do they like to go out to events, or are they more the “stay at home” type?  Where do they work?  Is it an office job? Is it outdoor work?  Or do they work with children?  What about lifestyle?  And of course, most importantly, personality?blue abalone pendant jewelry

The more you know someone, the better the chance that you will find just the right piece.   So what are some ways you can be sure to pick the right piece of jewelry for a gift?  Here is a checklist that should help you out.

 

  • The best research you can do is to notice what jewelry a person already wears.  If your friend or loved one wears silver all the time, buying a gold piece might be risky–he/she might not like the warm color of the gold metal and it will end up in the jewelry box.

 

  • jewelry-nautilus-pendantLook at their style of dress.  A very casual person would probably not wear a high fashion gemstone piece with his/her wardrobe and might only have rare occasions to wear this fine piece (wedding or formal event).  While everyone needs a piece like this, the jewelry will not get much wear time.  On the other hand, a casual piece of jewelry won’t get much wear if the person works and lives in a formal environment.

 

  • Take note of their day-to-day activities.  A teacher of young children or infants may not find it wise to wear long earrings or necklaces, as they can easily be broken or actually cause harm.  Did you ever have an earring ripped out of your ear by a baby????   OUCH!!]

 

  • Do they like big showey jewelry, or small understated pieces?  I myself love to have my jewelry noticed, but I have good friends that like their jewelry to be an accessory that lightly accents their wardrobes.  You might also observe whether the person wears jewelry with textures or smooth metal.

 

  • And finally, does the individual like a particular theme, or item?  I think of charms that can be added to a necklace or bracelet, or perhaps a particular stone that is a favorite.  If you are buying a ring–make sure you know the ring size!

 

Often times, it is your gut that will let you know if you found the right piece.  Most importantly don’t fall into the trap of buying jewelry YOU would want—remember that the recipient IS NOT YOU!!!

Observing all of these things will go a long way in helping you to get started on selecting that wonderful piece of art jewelry.  Google can be your best friend, and the more specifically you define the search, the closer you will get to selecting that perfect piece.  Pink rhodochrosite pendant jewelry

 

 

If you want to see some custom art jewelry please visit SilverSpiral Creations–or you can create a Custom Order

 

 

 

Carnelian, An Amazing Stone for Autumn Jewelry

I love carnelian!  I love the brilliant orange shades, the shiny crystal, and the pure color.  They make a piece of jewelry “pop”!

 
Carnelian RingCarnelian Stones are not only a beautiful bright orange form of Chalcedony, they are known for their healing properties!  Carnelian is known to stimulate creativity, and to help with personal success. Carnelian helps with negativity, and assists with concentration.  It is also believed to  help rid yourself of angry emotion.  Wearing Carnelian might even help with relief of joint pain and stiffness!

Carnelian Half Moon Earrings Jewelry

While I cannot substantiate any of these claims,  isn’t it just fun to think that there are healing properties of crystals and stones?  And if we DO get health benefits–then that is icing on the cake!

 

 

Maple Leaf Chalcedony Pendant in Sterling Silver

If you would like to know more about this amazing stone check out this information from Charms of Light

To See these pieces of jewelry and others in my collection, please check out  My Shop Here

Please let me know what you think of Carnelian!  I would love to know!