As I mention in my last post, I spent this past Saturday afternoon at a bead expo.
There was a ton of cool stuff there, but sadly I could not find any more of the cute little carved coral roses that I used for this necklace and this necklace. *sigh* Maybe next time.
I did, however, find some really cool diamond-shaped garnet beads and some gorgeous cream-colored pearls, as well as seed beads in a dizzying array of colors. Since variations of this necklace seem to sell pretty well, I decided to use the aforementioned beads to make these:
I also finally picked up some lapis lazuli. It tends to be kind of expensive, and I was hesitant to buy it when I was first starting out. I didn't really know what I was doing, and this whole jewelry thing is really just a side business so I had no idea whether it would last. I already know exactly what I'm going to use the lapis lazuli for. It will involve butterflies and antiqued brass. :-)
And speaking of antiqued brass: Until now I've mostly been using steel in an antiqued brass finish, since it's inexpensive and it allowed me to experiment a bit without sinking a lot of money into supplies. On one hand, it's great because I can make these cute little bird necklaces and sell them for just $12.50.
If I made those same necklaces using brass instead of steel, I'd probably have to charge almost twice as much. But real brass looks nicer and will last longer, and of course I want to offer quality products!
So now I need to decide whether I want to offer both options, or just gradually abandon the steel altogether in favor of antiqued brass. If I go with the latter, it would certainly help keep my raw materials inventory under control, but the former has the advantage of offering products at various price points... Decisions, decisions.
Anyone out there want to offer their thoughts or experiences on the matter, either as a business owner or as a consumer???