Jewelry Making Blog

Handcrafted Jewelry - A Great Way to Wear Green On St. Paddy's Day
Wednesday, April 16 2014 00:00

Handcrafted Jewelry - A Great Way to Wear Green On St. Paddy's Day


Think green, it's almost Spring!  With the arrival of Spring, comes the most "green" holiday around.  Celebrated on March 17th, St. Patrick's Day is embraced around the world with various traditions such as clovers, corned beef, and the color green.

But where, exactly, did this color tradition come from?  According to the Huffington Post, green was not the original color theme of March.  Various explanations exist for green replacing blue, including the "Emerald Isle" designation and the green in the Irish flag.  Additionally, St. Patrick used a green three-leafed clover in teachings of the church, and this is considered the most likely origin of the green theme.

St. Paddy's Day offers opportunities for creative expression through many mediums such as food, drink, parties and apparel.  Handcrafted jewelry is a great way for jewelry designers to wear green or sell green on this festive holiday.

From whimsical to elegant, the possibilities are endless for handmade, green-themed jewelry.  Visit ourwebsite for ideas, and browse other wonderful resources such as Pinterest and Etsy for St. Patrick's Day and beyond.  While green takes center stage for these projects, consider adding orange and white as well, to showcase all three colors of Ireland's flag.

Clovers are another unique Irish accent to incorporate into your jewelry designs.  Legend says that four-leafed clovers offer magical protection and are thought to ward off bad luck.  There is just something charming about the clover, and the WigJig is the perfect tool for creating them from wire.  In a few basic steps, you can make your own luck.

St. Patrick's Day is a global celebration that incorporates tradition, faith, family, and good old-fashioned fun.  Jump into the traditions of the Emerald Isle, and don't forget to wear green to avoid the pinch of a leprechaun!

Ready to get your green on with handmade jewelry?  Contact us today and we'll be happy to help with a wide variety of tools and learning resources.

Jewelry Making Ideas: Using the World to Foster Creativity
Tuesday, April 15 2014 00:00

Jewelry Making Ideas: Using the World to Foster Creativity


It can be frustrating to overcome creative obstacles throughout the artistic process. When you're in the slump, try looking to the world around you to craft your own masterpieces. Using natural aesthetics can sell your work to consumers and be an excellent outlet for your inner creativity.

Using Architecture as Inspiration

Architectural aesthetic can easily be translated into your creative work. Channeling some of your favorite structures (bridges, skyscrapers, towers, churches, etc.) can translate into beautiful jewelry very simply. Use your own city for a personal reference or use the internet to expand your horizon.

Using Nature as Inspiration

Nature has a beautiful natural aesthetic which appeals to a variety of individuals. The intertwining of trees and branches can transfer into wire quite beautifully. This process could be made easier through the use of the "wigjig". Color schemes are also a useful attribute of nature's aesthetic. Earth tones and floral colors can add diversity and uniqueness to your collection. Perhaps try alluding to the movement in the water in your favorite stream, or recreating the essence of the landscape at your favorite vacation spot.

Referencing Books and Albums

Try using your favorite literary and musical works. Make a piece which embodies your favorite character's personality or use a color scheme which your favorite song evokes from you when you close your eyes. Using different colors and hues of beads and gems can add a flair to your jewelry!

Capturing the world around you in your jewelry making can be a difficult process. With the help of "Wigjigs", your creativity can be translated with ease into a wonderful artistic creation.

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Stock Up on Jewelry Making Supplies for Upcoming Art & Craft Fairs
Monday, April 14 2014 00:00

Stock Up on Jewelry Making Supplies for Upcoming Art & Craft Fairs

If you've ever set up a booth at an art and craft fair, you know just how exciting it can be. Selling your work at a public event allows you to meet customers face-to-face. You can talk about your techniques, give demos, and share your smile and enthusiasm when someone buys one of your wonderful handcrafted jewelry items.

Long before you open your booth and wait for jewelry lovers to arrive, you should prepare for the event. Start by designing a new booth display that draws customers into your space. Begin creating jewelry ahead of time, working steadily until you have enough designs to keep those jewelry lovers happy. To do that, make certain that you have enough jewelry making supplies to keep your hands busy until your first event arrives.

Wire keeps those creative fingers working 

Wire is so versatile, you can use it to create many exciting jewelry styles. Buy as much as you can fit within your jewelry making budget. Purchase a variety of gauges--18, 20, and 22--or whatever sizes you prefer to use. 

You can do wire-work with hand tools or use a WigJig to create fabulous designs fast. You can make the bold, elegant, or artsy designs your customers know and love; or you can search for new ideas. Just click the "Learn" link or view one of the "Talking Hands" video lessons.

Buy a bunch of beads 

When your customers return to your art and craft fair booths this year, give them new designs to crave. One of the best ways to do that is with a collection of beads that inspire you to mix them with wire in all new ways. 

Give your art and craft show visitors an assortment of jewelry they can't resist. Figure out how many necklaces, bracelets, or pairs of earrings you'll need to present a grand display. Then buy the beads and supplies you'll need to get it done.

Stock up on bead stringing supplies

If your customers love beaded necklaces and bracelets, but wire isn't their thing, you should string those beads the way they like them. Use beading wire, string, cords, or what ever you choose. Buy enough supplies to create the beaded pieces that will make your customers happy.

You'll need findings to finish everything

If you run out of the findings you need, you might have to interrupt a marathon jewelry-making session with an expensive run to the local bead shop. Of course you can use wire to make unique clasps, earwires, and other findings. (You'll love the video instructions for interchangeable earwires.) But if you don't want to make all of your findings or you'd prefer not to overspend at a local bead shop, figure out what findings you need, order them now, stock up, and be ready.  

Double check your tools

Before you sit down to make jewelry, make sure you have the tools you need and that they are in good condition. Bead shop tools can be a bit pricey. You can get a good deal on clunky hardware pliers, but you won't be able to do your best work.

You will get the best replacement tools for the best price if you purchase them well before you sit down to create your jewelry masterpieces. And while you're taking inventory of your tools, think about getting a WigJig if you don't already have one.

Let your creativity flow

When you're preparing for a big event, it can be really annoying when you run out of jewelry making supplies before you finish creating enough pieces to fill your booth. Misplacing or breaking a favorite tool can be equally frustrating. These things can lead to art and craft fairs that are less successful than you would prefer.

When you sit down to make jewelry you'll work more efficiently, the creativity will flow more smoothly, and you'll be a lot happier when you have everything you need. If you contact us, we can help.

Handcrafted Jewelry to Match the Pastel Outfits of Easter 2014
Sunday, April 13 2014 00:00

Handcrafted Jewelry to Match the Pastel Outfits of Easter 2014


Handcrafted jewelry would complete those gorgeous, spring-fresh, new Easter fashions to perfection. You spent considerable time shopping for just the right dresses and shoes for yourself and your girls. Spend a little time to accessorize with handcrafted jewelry. You will be able to match your outfit's colors and style without the hassle of riffling through countless tangled bits and pieces at the local mall or accessory shop.

The expense of purchasing matching earrings, bracelets, necklace, hair accessories, etc. can be well over $100. You could spend half that and make all the accessories you need plus hair accessories and little bracelets for you girls Easter baskets. They will be excited to don their Easter attire with the handcrafted accessories that you tuck inside plastic eggs for a cute surprise. 

Try the beaded barrettes and pony tail holder/bracelets in coordinating pastel seed beads colors. If you are questioning your ability to make handcrafted jewelry and accessories, try some 'How To' Instructions for beginners. With these simple tips and tricks, you will have it all going on in no time.

Choose different colors of pastel seed beads and change up the pattern to make a whole different look for each child and save you money. Just a few examples of 6mm seed beads include:

  • Crystal - a beautiful shimmery bead that will match any other colors you pick.
  • Light Aqua - Aqua is a trending color this spring season. Try this color for that trendy look.
  • Light Green - Every spring accessory needs the color of budding new plants of the season.
  • Light Pink - Every little girl or the little girl at heart needs pink in her life.
  • Yellow - A sunny yellow to make everyone smile.

If you pick a coordinating colored wire, making charming tiaras would be a snap with wire design and your seed beads. Wire design is made easy with the Wigjig's kit for beginners. Whatever you decide to create it will be more meaningful coming from your hands and heart.

The ideas and creativity are endless with Wigjig's products and guides. Let us make your Easter pastel perfection. Contact us for additional information or questions about our products. Happy Easter!

Making Vertical Loops Earrings
Friday, March 07 2014 17:20

Vertical Loops Earrings Jewelry Making Project -- Finished EarringsMaking the Vertical Loops Earrings shown at right is an advanced beginners jewelry making project.  This is a simple design to make and makes earrings that look professionally made.  This is also a relatively quick project in that you can make these earrings in about 15 minutes depending upon how proficient you are in making jewelry by hand.  We have two different Vertical Loops Earrings, one with three loops as shown at right and one with four loops.  Please select the picture at right, or select here to navigate to our free step-by-step insctructions for making these two earring designs

Making these earrings can be accomplished on any of our WigJig jewelry making jigs, but does require two or three Super Pegs.  Our technique for making the earrings requires you to remove the wire from the jig and replace it in the mirror image position, flipping it over, several times in the process.  By flipping the wire over at the appropriate time, this causes the wire to flip from top to bottom relative to the other side of the wire at each point where the wire is between two pegs in the pattern.  This is complicated to describe, but the net result is by having the wire move from on top to the bottom each time it passes between two of the pegs in the pattern, it makes the resulting earring body stronger and more permanent.  This is hard to describe in words, but will make sense when you view the series of pictures that we include with our step-by-step instructions. 

Visually, we want the top loop to be the smallest, then a larger loop and the bottom loop which is larger still.  Below the bottom loop we hang a bead dangle that is larger than the bottom loop, the largest  loop in the earring body.

These earrings are made with 18 or 20 gauge wire and one large bead (8 or 9mm in diameter).  For more experienced jewelry makers, we recommend using the 18 gauge wire.  For less experienced jewelry makers, 20 gauge wire would be easier to use.  This project also uses one head pin finding per earring and one commercial or man-made ear wire per earring. 

If you are looking for a quick jewelry making project that will make earrings using a larger bead, this should be a good project to try.  It is simple, making the earrings is quick, and the resulting earrings are esthetically pleasing. Finally, select here to navigate to our free step-by-step instructions for making these earrings.



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