The New Obsession-Handmade

So what is this new obsession to have things handmade?  You see it everywhere.  Amazon.com has a new “Handmade” section-supposedly to compete with Etsy.com–but I see handmade popping up everywhere.  Martha Stewart has a handmade initiative, as do many other major retailers–even Ebay is trying to hop on to this bandwagon.
So what is driving this trend?  After researching a little, I found out that customers want to connect with the maker of items.  This gives their new acquisition more meaning,

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The 800 Pound Gorilla, Let’s Get Him Out of the Jewelry Studio!

Hello again.  This is Part II of “How to Talk to an Artist,” a blog series about wanting a special something custom made just for you.  Last time, we spoke about having the confidence to approach an artist to ask for a custom order.  Today, let’s talk about making that order!
Since I am an artisan jeweler, I am going to use jewelry as my example, but this would be true if you wanted to order any custom art,

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How to Talk to an Artist Part 1

So you want a beautiful, personalized piece of art.  Maybe it is art jewelry, maybe a painting, pottery, sculpture, or other art.  You want it to be unique, your own, and perhaps you need it to be affordable.  Some of us are lucky enough to not have to worry about cost, but let’s face it–for most of us, cost is a huge consideration
So how do you convey that to an artist?  If you are like me,

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Why is Handmade Jewelry So Expensive?

Brown Agate Necklace jewelry

This is a question I get all the time! 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?
Well–let’s take a look.  This Dryhead Agate piece
is handmade from start to finish.  The stone was mined in the Western USA.  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.  

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Sentimental Journey—How do you choose your jewelry?

This past summer, I had the privilege of being able to travel to Germany, the Czech Republic, and the south of France.  These are three very different regions, with their own customs, beauty, and geology.
 The beautiful countryside, the alps, the vineyards, and the wonderful architecture of the buildings, inspired me by their shapes, colors, light, and the sensory overload is difficult to describe.  Some regions call to me to return, while others, not so much.

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Who wants tarnish???

tarnish

So, you buy a beautiful sterling silver bracelet.  And it is bright and shiny, with no scratches and you are in love with this piece of jewelry.  You paid a premium price because it was an artisan made piece and it is of good, no, superior quality. And within 2 weeks, it begins to tarnish!  Why?  And how can you stop it from happening?  And how do you get rid of it when it happens?
First–the Why…

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The Four Elements

4 elements jewelry

One of my latest reflections in my artistic journey is trying to figure out what I’m doing?  I mean really, do you know why you do what you do?  Do you REALLY know what you’re doing, or do you just pretend like you know, and keep on plugging???

Someone recently asked me this question, and my answer was “I make jewelry”  He said, “oh yeah? Who do you make it for?”  Me:  “Women of course, and some men,

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Who Am I?

Well, it has been awhile since I posted…I have been going through an identity crisis of sorts. As a jewelry artist–I wondered, what makes me make what I do? Does it speak to me? Does it speak to others? Then one day, I was doing something unrelated and boring–and it came to me.
I have always loved pretty rocks–ever since I was a small child. But you can’t easily carry bunches of pretty rocks to share with others.

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