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Sunday, June 23, 2013

Becoming a Professional Jewelry Artisan

Owning a jewelery and bead store is sometimes especially enlightening.  I am frequently met with the comment by customers, "Oh, I'm a jeweler myself" or "Aren't you crafty!"  When further discussion ensues, most likely the "jeweler" does some beading or other craft level artistry.  The customer who refers to me as "crafty" doesn't understand the concept of a jewelry designer and artisan. Then I feel compelled to enlighten them a little about what a real jeweler does.

Yes, I agree I am a craftsman (or crafts woman).  And I meet a lot of "jewelers" in my profession.  And, I am sometimes offended by the occasional comment from someone who thinks my work is "crafty" or "cute",  or when they ask me to make something for them, then balking at the price quoted to them,  say, "Oh, I'll just make it myself, it can't be that hard!"   Would you perform your own open heart surgery if you were not a cardiac surgeon? I think not.  All I request is that I am respected for my expertise in jewelry making, and that my customers understand I am a professional, have spent lots of money and time learning my craft, and that I am entitled to compensation for providing them with professional product and service.  This is my profession, my job, the way I feed my family, not a hobby!

Becoming a professional jewelry artisan takes time and patience. It is something that  definitely requires major planning. With money,  plenty of  training,  motivation, knowledge, and business skills, you can become a jeweler and a business owner.

Stringing a few beads on elastic string does not make you a jeweler.  Buying mountings and dropping stones in them does not make you a jeweler.  Getting a thorough education in jewelry making, practice and perseverance,  and an eye for detail along with a creative streak can make you a real jeweler if your work really hard.   

So, if you are thinking about becoming a professional jewelry artisan, ask yourself if you are detail oriented, have the time and money to invest in attending a professional jewelry school, and have the patience to practice, practice, practice to hone your jewelry making skills.  If not, then this profession is not for you.  

On the other hand, if you just want to have some fun, make some simple jewelry for yourself and friends then you should consider taking a basic beading class or other beginner classes offered at  your local bead store, senior center or community college.  That way you can learn to assemble your pieces properly and impress your friends and family with your creative projects.  And you can feel free to refer to yourself as a beader or crafter, but,  I'm sorry,  not a jeweler.

Sorry for the soapbox folks!  Just sharing a little about my life!   And by the way, I love being a jeweler.......I'd like to be your jeweler... Call me or stop in to visit anytime!

Dog Days of Summer are Upon Us!

June 21, 2013, the first official day of summer proved to me a true Summer in the South day!  91+ degrees and humid!  But we love our Southern climes and we can always hit the beach, the river or the pool to cool off OR we can take a class at Analece in the good old air conditioned studio with a great instructor and fun classmates!  Don't forget to include us in your summer "Beat the Heat Plans".  Our next group class on the calendar is the "Sparkly Wrap Bracelet", Saturday July 6 at 10:30 am. Make your bracelet in the morning and still have time for the beach!  A classic take on the Chan Luu style bracelet with a little bit of added glam.  Be sure to sign up soon before the class is full!

Saturday, June 1, 2013

Sign up for summer classes!

Private summer classes offer an opportunity to hone your jewelry making skills and get a head start on holiday gift making.  We are offering basic beading, wire techniques, and precious metal clay primer classes by appointment only on Tuesdays, Thursdays, Fridays and Saturdays starting at 10:30 am.  You may book a single class or a series of classes beginner to advanced.  Come alone or book with a friend or two.  Taught by Anita Park-Rosenbaum, owner who brings years of jewelry making experience to the table.  You will work with quality materials (included with class fee) and take home a finished piece of jewelry you will be proud to wear.  Anita will also offer some group seed bead weaving classes featuring peyote stitch, ladder and brick stitch, herringbone stitch and various spiral techniques..  Classes will be limited to 6 students and require advance registration. Group classes will be listed on the attached calendar and in our store.  Minimum age requirement for all classes is 12 years old.  Make your summer a fun and creative one!  Stop by the store or call us at 251-929-3620 to schedule your class today.