I really want to thank Brenda Sue for leading us all on this journey. It was incredibly generous to offer to lead this class on her own time and for no cost. I'm very glad I decided to go ahead and join in. I really debated up front because I wasn't really sure I wanted to do jewelry in this manner. I didn't want to lose my creative voice and I wasn't sure if I'm at a point in my life where I can really expand on my jewelry output.
I am mostly wrong on count one, and mostly right on count two.. but first let's look at the last few pieces of my line.
When I left off last month, I was trying to get my time on each pin broach down so I could charge no more than $25 and make what I need to make.
|Laying out the last 2 designs.|
So I made the last 2 pieces necklaces, and it saved time because I don't need to attach the pin back.
After factoring everything in (including increased costs of necklace chain), I still ended up with a cost of $35 minimum each piece.
I think I"ll price the pins at $32, and the pendants $40 and see what happens.
I've also kicked around ideas for more expensive pieces to be at the high end of my line. I sketched out a couple of ideas, which I might get to eventually.
I ran into a real roadblock at this point.
|sketches of larger, more expensive pieces|
While these pieces had meaning while I designed them, I've said what I wanted to say.
And I'm tired of hearts. I"m tired of doing pieces with hearts in them.
I think I mentioned in the first blog hop back in January I'm not normally a heart gal. I'm still not a heart gal, and I've reached my limits, for the moment at least, on working with hearts. I really had to force myself to finish the last 2 pieces, though I have to say I love how the bird heart piece turned out.
I guess you could think maybe I just need to pick a different project to work on to develop a line around... but the truth is I'm gonna hit this wall regardless of what I'm making. I like being to hop around materials and themes and not have to make the same thing or work with the same materials day in and day out.
|You can hardly tell the bird is a heart.. maybe that's why I like it so much...|
Even when I'm working with stuff I love to work with, even if I'm enjoying my design... I can only work on that for so long.
There is also the time factor. I work full-time at my day job, plus I have a house and family to maintain, and I need to sleep and heck, I occasionally like to do something for myself like read a book... There really is a limit to how much time I get to spend working on jewelry or working on my business as it is.
Even though the business right now is an important contributor to my family 's overall financial health, I can't spend more than a hour here and a hour there on it during the weekdays. Every hour I spend in the studio is probably an hour I should be washing dishes or something... right now as I type this it's almost midnight I should be in bed, not writing my blog.
|And the other necklace done!|
In the mean time, this adventure has reinforced that it's OK if I make "mini" lines. I was afraid If I applied some basic production line thinking to my jewelry making I was somehow loosing my creativity. That was was "cheapening" my jewelry because I repeated a few designs.
I look at my line of heart and watch faces, and while they are the same in concept, each one is very different. It's OK as an artist to explore an idea in several pieces.. I'm not a fraud for doing so. I can honestly call each pin or necklace OOAK and not be lying or hypocritical.
|crappy pic of the whole line, 6 pieces in all.|
Going forward I will be doing more of these. I enjoy it, I get 6-8 pieces done in the time I might have gotten 3-4 before, and I can be happy and confident that I'm doing good, original work. I can really set out and explore a concept in my brain, instead of doing 1 piece of it and think, wow, I need to do more.. and never get around to it.
In the future, if my situation or inclination changes, I now have the basic outline on how to take my business to the next step.
Ultimately it's about what makes me happy and what makes sense for my situation at this time.
Be sure to see how my classmates have learned during this 3 month adventure!
Brenda Sue Lansdowne, B'sue Boutiques (Teacher and leader )
Clever Designs by Jann
Apt to Wander Studio
Magpie in the Sky, Spoil Heap Tales
The Vintage Gem
Shattered Time Jewelry
MJCasady Copper Works
Leila Nicole Designs
Howling Dog Jewelry
Leila Bee Designs
Wings and Beads
Wind Dancer Studios
Jan Lea Designs
Sweet Willow Designs
Artistry: Handcrafted Bead Designs
Desire Divine Jewels
Mary Katherine Deis
The Rose Sword: Artisan and Vintage Collectible Jewelry
Kristy Le Trendy Jewelry Designs
Needful Luxuries Occasional Blog
From the Bead Board
Imaginary Jewelry and Altered Art
The Journey of Pens and Things
Fine and Dandy Jewelry and Art
Jennifer Merrill Williams
Artists of All Stripes
Denise Lussier Poirier
Jewelry by Denise
Small Stuff Design
1996 Shabby Lane
Kat BarronMiller <<<< ME !Midnight Kat Productions Art Jewelry
Mama San's Mojo