Saturday, January 23, 2016

Making Jewelry - A New Phase

Beads!  Feldspar, Aquamarine, Jasper and Lapis Lazuli.
I decided to start tackling a very hard and emotional job today.  It seems a good thing to do while snowed in from Snowzilla / Snowmageddon.  The job is to start going through all the inventory from my on-hiatus jewelry business, and deciding what to do with it.

Although "on hiatus" is not really accurate ... the business, as a business, is closed.

I started making jewelry as a hobby, and like so many, my hopes expanded to selling the best pieces online and at craft fairs.  More than anything I wanted to *share* what I had created.  But making quality jewelry is expensive, and the best way to make sure I had enough money to buy supplies was to see if I could sell some of my pieces and turn enough of a profit to make more jewelry.  I was encouraged by supportive family members to try a business. 

One of the sets I made with sterling
silver, Swarovski crystal, pearl,
blue chalcedony, and jasper.
And for a few years, it worked, if only just.  It was always a small business, barely scraping by, but it allowed me to create some lovely things, and I hope, make their owners very happy.  But, things have changed.  This was originally a two-person business, and my partner has moved on to other callings and endeavors.  The business was never really set up to be something just one person could handle.  So I'm going to take the business, such as it is, into its next "phase."  I'd rather say that then to imagine my beloved business completely coming to an end.  But pretty soon I'm going to have to face facts.  The business license has not been renewed, and I doubt the Etsy store will ever have cause to reopen. 

I am not up to the stress of dealing with all the paperwork, shipping, craft shows, and such, alone, as well as dealing with all the aspects of supply / design / create.  So I need to dramatically pare down the inventory and obligations into something I can manage on my own.  I still hope to create jewelry for friends, gifts, and maybe a bit of custom work.  But it won't be a business anymore - instead, it is going back to being a hobby.

A mug with the store
logo - Lunar Blue Designs.
So, back to the sorting through stuff.  My partner sent me all of her supplies - boxes and boxes of stuff - including loose beads, earring holders, display table linens, findings, cords, and so much more.  I need to decide what to do with it all.  All of my inventory, and all of hers, needs to be sorted through, and I need to decide what I'm still going to use for occasional jewelry making, what I'm going to sell off, and what I'm going to have to give away.  Then I have to go through packing it all up, getting auctions listed for all the lots, and then shipping it all off.

Many people have had to do this, of course.  Still, I'm very sad about it.  Seeing part of your past come to a close, something that was a creative endeavor close to your heart, is tough.  But I'm trying to be as positive as I can.  I will still be making jewelry when I can find a bit of time to do so.  And years of working in a business has really 'upped my game.'  My pieces are professionally made and of the highest quality.  I am proud of my work.

It has also opened some doors to combine my hobbies of quilling and jewelry into gemstone and paper creations.  I hope to explore more "quilled jewelry" designs and possibilities as time goes on.

And if you are a beaded gemstone jeweler too, you might make out with quite a deal!  After I get through the inventory I'll be posting a number of large lots for sale on Ebay.  So if you are looking for beads at basement prices, it will be something really worth checking out!

Well, back to the piles o stuff!  They ain't gonna sort themselves ... to bad about that :)

Image Credits:  All my pix of all my stuffs

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