How to Give Your Jewelry Designs a Personality That Sells
By Kristie Leong
Are you a jewelry designer who markets your own handmade jewelry line? If so, it can sometimes be beneficial to step back and take a fresh look at your jewelry designs and ask yourself an important question: "Does my handmade jewelry line have a unique personality?".
This is an important question to ask because if your jewelry doesn't have a personality or voice of its own, it will be lost in the sea of imported and mass produced jewelry that bombards the consumer every day.
We have a bead store customer who is quite a skillful jewelry maker. She specializes in necklace sets which include matching earrings and sometimes a bracelet. She uses high quality materials and her work is very nice constructed. She keeps her prices at a very reasonable level without underselling herself.
Well this very nice handmade jewelry designer came into our store with a distraught look on her face. She was visibly upset, even in tears. She tearfully claimed that the jewelry she worked so hard on wasn't selling at shows or through the consignment outlets where she consigns. She had the look of a defeated person who was about to give up on her dream. We couldn’t have that!
We asked her to show us her jewelry designs which she happened to have with her. One look at her designs told me quite a bit. Although you could tell a great deal of care and workmanship had gone into their construction and the designs were well executed, her pieces lacked the kind of impact that turns a good piece of handmade jewelry into a "must have" piece.
This very frustrated handmade jewelry designer used gorgeous semiprecious stone beads and sterling, but they were arranged in a pretty, but somewhat predictable manner. We decided that she needed to add a "signature look' to her designs to give them personality and turn them into something special that consumers would have a hard time passing up.
After circling the store for awhile and discussing various options, we decided that the addition of a beautiful handmade lampwork bead or two to each design was just what was needed to give her jewelry a signature look. Yes, she would have to raise her price points a bit since handmade lampwork beads can be expensive, but I felt sure that she could get these higher prices with more distinctive designs.
Our frustrated jewelry designer went home and designed 15 new necklaces using one or two strategically placed lampwork beads in each design. The gorgeous colors in the lampwork beads made the rest of her design pop, taking them from rather ordinary to quite extraordinary. Her price points were raised to compensate for the increased expense.
To make a long story short, at her next craft show she sold EVERY ONE of her new necklaces. Needless to say, she was thrilled!
Is it time to look at your jewelry line with a fresh eye for originality? Does your jewelry have a personality? If not, it may be time to make some subtle changes to give your jewelry sales that extra boost. Here are some ideas for giving new personality to your jewelry:
1. Add few dichroic glass beads in strategic areas of your design. Dichroic glass gives off a beautiful, iridescent sheen that adds color and life to a handmade jewelry piece.
2. Have you ever worked with polymer clay? Using polymer clay, you can create beautiful, one-of-kind signature beads using only a few hand tools and an oven. You can create beads that no one else has access to. You can point out to your customer that these beads are "one-of-a-kind" handmade artisan beads.
3. Add a stunning pendant to the center of some of your necklaces. Don't settle for just an ordinary pendant. Look for something no one else has. You can make an incredible pendant by using a headpin, and unusual lampwork bead and some decorative sterling silver beads.
4. Use a distinctive, large, beautifully detailed high quality clasp that grabs attention. A simple clasp change can often give a necklace or bracelet an entirely new personality. You may even consider having a signature clasp cast for you by a jewelry casting company. This is not as expensive as you might think and really adds to your design options.
5. Try some unusual color combinations. Certain colors placed together can really make a design "pop". Review your color wheel and note how a color can be markedly enhanced when placed next to its complement. Don't settle for tired, overused color combinations. Think out of the box!
6. Sign your work or add a hand stamped, metal signature tag to your designs. These can be custom made for you by variety of companies on the internet or you can buy tiny metal discs and hand stamp your own.
7. Consider adding gorgeous buttons or charms with a vintage look as a centerpiece for some of your necklaces. This can add such a vintage feel to your creations.
There are lots more ways to add personality to your jewelry but, wanted to get you started thinking about the steps you might take to give you jewelry a more identifiable personality. By regularly reassessing and redefining your jewelry business, you can give it the personality it needs to generate some serious profits.
Kristie Leong M.D. specializes in helping handmade jewelry designers find new markets for their jewelry. She publishes a blog and has website full of information on jewelry marketing at Jewelry Marketing. Article Source: Ezine Articles
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