Background of the WigJig Jewelry Tools Company:
Many people have asked us to discuss how we started our WigJig company. This is something that we have been reluctant to do because it seems to be immodest. At the same time our story is a little unique and we can understand people's interest. Starting a new business is something that requires a great idea, a lot of business savvy, some technical savvy and a large measure of luck. Unfortunately, the great idea alone is not enough. Without the luck and a measure of business savvy, our company would have failed.
Our WigJig company is slightly different from most companies selling jewelry tools. The people who run our company actually make jewelry. Many of the companies making jewelry tools are experts in making tools, but not in making jewelry. They know how to make pliers so they just make a slightly different pair of pliers for the jewelry application. Unfortunately, this can result in pliers that work and are well made, but are not necessarily optimized for making jewelry. That was not good enough for us.
The reason we invented our WigJig jewelry making tools is because we wanted to use these tools for making our own jewelry. We have also worked with vendors to develop some new hand tools that we now sell, for the simple reason that we found that existing pliers and tools did not meet fully meet our needs for making jewelry. If you review our Beginner's Instructions, you will see that we have methods for accomplishing several jewelry making techniques that aren't used or taught by others in this industry. In short we do things differently because we think we found a better way to do many of the basic tasks involved in making jewelry by hand with no soldering. Our goal is simple. We want to make jewelry by hand that is so consistent that it looks like it was made by a machine.
Our company was founded by Marj Helwig and her son, Gary. Marj was an instructor teaching jewelry-making with wire and beads. Gary was an engineer who viewed Marj's hand made jewelry and proposed some alternatives to making wire components more consistently with a jig and pattern. Working together, they developed the WigJig jewelry making tools and accessories. Marj provided the drive and the ambition to produce Gary's jig in large quantities for selling. When she sold all the jigs that she originally had manufactured, our WigJig company was up and running. Unfortunately, several months after starting our WigJig Company, Marj passed away suddenly. By coincidence, Gary's wife, Suzanne, had just retired, with time on her hands. Suzanne took over and supplied the business acumen to help our company grow.
Today, Gary provides the engineering approach to making jewelry and the development of our WigJig line of jewelry tools. You will probably notice in his instructions that he concentrates on strength in addition to style.
Our company has been in business since 1997. We are the first company to manufacture and sell jigs for jewelry-making.
Philosophy of the WigJig Company:
We are committed to treating every customer fairly, with a goal of providing customer service to a level that we would like to receive ourselves.