I’ve changed. I’ve changed as an artist completely. Just like an igneous rock changes under pressure, and then becomes a metamorphic rock. Loving rocks, stones and gems, I had to use that analogy. Nerd alert! My whole artistic temperament is different from it was before the Build a Line Master Challenge started. I had hopes, dreams and wonderful ideas, but no idea of how to get there. I needed focus. I got more than I bargained for….
I started with a passion and joy. That was my love for birds. Here was the beginnings of my line. This humble little bird ring is a fun piece and easily reproduced. Something everyone can afford.
From there I moved on to the line of bracelets. I soaked up a lot of inspiration from our class when we studied Jewelry History. I learned that a sound artistic foundation starts with understanding Jewelry’s roots. I can now see all that research manifest itself in my current work. These next 3 bracelets I might want to reproduce, and sell several of each design. They will be my lowest priced items in my line of Bird Bracelets. I’ve made a pair of matching earrings for each bracelet, to provide a cohesive look when worn together. I loved making them!
I go back and reread the modules we’ve learned and discussed each week. Our teacher Brenda has written 23 modules to date, plus a few from the administrators. It’s no wonder we have all changed so much. As part of the business plan I’m writing, I intend to review these modules often, to keep these ideas fresh in my mind. I will also be keeping abreast of current fashions by reading Vogue and InStyle magazine each month, keeping my pulse on all the seasonal colors, and watching online fashion shows. There is so much information to be gleaned from staying plugged in and current.
Sunny, my Photobomber…
I had quite a few ‘aha’ moments in class. One of them was learning to keep a careful eye on my inventory. I found that it directly related to the types of jewelry one makes and their venue of selling. Items like clasps, rings and chain are must haves. If you were strictly going to be making ooaks, or ‘one of a kinds’, then a varied supply of different finishes would work great. If I was going to sell multiples, it’s important to not run out of key pieces. If I’m selling at trade shows, I’d need to have lots to pieces made, sometimes multiples and be ready to go at a moments notice. It makes so much sense, but when you’re not planning and just hanging out making stuff, you’re just not ready! I now know what to strive for. I plan to be ready for all situations. Just in case…
The next 2 bracelets in my line are special pieces. These will not be reproduced. They took me a long time to make, and their prices will reflect that. They also have earrings to go with them. The gold bracelet on the right has a perfect petite 3D bird in the middle. Try as I might, in many lighting situations, I could not capture it. I plan to keep trying!
Here’s a close-up finally, of the golden bracelet, and the elusive center bird….
Yeah, we can finally see the perfect little Rusty Black Bird!
At the beginning of the class, I was going to just make the 5 required pieces, but then they begged me for earrings. I was going to start making the bracelets matching necklaces, but I pulled myself back. It was too much. Especially since the bracelets were pretty ornate, and conversation starters. I gave my head a shake and talked my exuberance off the ledge! Instead, I took that energy and applied it to a 6th piece. Something over the top. Something special. Something that screamed FASHION! I started with a big nod to Pantone’s color of the year for 2016. They announce a new color each year, plus a selection of seasonal colors. This year for the first time, they announced 2 colors. Rose Quartz and Serenity Blue. Very soft colors. So I used them as my inspiration and pumped them up a bit. Okay, quite a lot! Here’s my show stopper bracelet. The background is a lacy brass cuff that I painted with ivory and distressed. The bird, I covered in tons of pink and blue rhinestones. Along the bottom and back are blue cut glass drops, and a hand cut Rose Quartz drop in the middle. Plus a pair of matching earrings. I picture these pieces worn on a fashion shoot or on the runway.
I’d like to thank all the amazing birds that have enriched my life, and inspired this line with their free spirits. I’d love to thank my dear teacher, mentor, and friend Brenda Sue Lansdowne. Her experience over many decades made this class and my metamorphosis as an artist possible. I’d love to thank all the beautiful rocks and gems everywhere, and you know who you are…My love affair with you started me down this awesome path. My treasure chest is full. Aaargh Matey!
BALC 2016 Sponsered by B’Sue Boutiques. www.bsueboutiques.com
Here’s our BLOG HOPPING list!
Brenda Sue Lansdowne Jewelry Making Outside the Box
Diana Buynak Butterfly Emporium Ceramic Studio
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Clare Wells Nemeth, Creative Magick
Mary Reckmeyer, Afrayed Not
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Elizabeth Wilks, Wearable Art by Lizzie
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Carole Carlson, Bead Sophisticate
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