44% of Americans prefer to do things themselves. Now usually, this might apply to home improvement projects. However, increasingly we're also seeing it in something like jewelry making.
Many people think jewelry making is an intricate art that takes decades to master. While this is undoubtedly true for luxury jewelry, the reality is that making a simple but unique piece is easy. You might not think you can make gorgeous jewelry on your own.
Put a little more faith in yourself! Jewelry-making will no doubt require a lot of practice and effort. Those serious about it will find it comes naturally in no time. The best thing is it doesn't matter what you do with the jewelry.
Want to do it just for fun to make presents for your friends and loved ones? No problem! Or maybe it could transform into a business complete with your own employees.
It's all up to you what you get out of the activity. Keep reading, and you'll be on the fast track toward becoming a jewelry master. Let's dive in!
Pick Out Tools and Supplies
Before you begin, you first need tools. The superb news is that many of these tools you might find lying around in a spare toolbox. Others, you will need to get from a specialized jewelry supplier.
You will need specialized tools to work with certain types of materials and jewelry types. Picture in your mind what type of jewelry you want to make. Then purchase the tools you need to take on that type of project.
That way, you can start investing in the corresponding supplies. There are some essential tools that everyone should own. These include:
- Round nose pliers
- Chain nose pliers
- Step jaw pliers
- Bent closing pliers
- Nylon jaw pliers
- Metal ruler
- Wire cutters
- Practice wire
- Pegboards, which are used to bend the wire
This can seem like a lot. But if you plan on pursuing jewelry making for a while, getting all these tools makes sense. If you feel overwhelmed, only buy what you need.
Consider Getting a Jewelry Making Kit
You can usually purchase the raw materials needed to create jewelry online or at a craft store. You might be tempted to use high-quality, expensive materials on your jewelry. We don't recommend doing this.
The reality is that it will take a lot of practice before your jewelry looks good. Using suitable materials during this practice stage can be wasteful. Instead, consider getting a jewelry-making kit.
These kits will give you the raw materials and tools you need to get started. Indeed, the materials inside could be better. However, you can search around to find some not-bad ones. They're inexpensive, so you will save money practicing.
Select a Type of Jewelry to Make
You might have a specific type of jewelry you want to make when you're shopping. Or, you might want to experiment with different styles. We recommend trying out as many different kinds of jewelry as you can.
You might have a preference for which ones you prefer crafting. Once you know what type of jewelry you want to create, it's time to get everything you need. We recommend exploring different websites and designers when you first get started.
This will help you determine what styles you like and which you dislike. What should you do if you encounter a piece of jewelry that you think you can recreate? Is it stealing to remake it? We say go for it! It's not stealing if you're not selling it for money.
Doing this can help teach you valuable lessons about jewelry. It can also help inspire original designs of your own. Is a musician a thief for covering other artists' songs? Of course not!
What Are the Different Types of Materials?
Like the artist, you aren't confined to painting. There is a whole range of jewelry mediums out there you can explore. It's okay to be multi-disciplined.
If you find something to specialize in, you can hone your skills and become a real artistic talent. In this section, we'll briefly explore some of the popular options.
Beaded jewelry is one of the best types to get started with. It teaches you valuable wiring skills. And the start-up cost is meager.
Don't worry; these aren't the types of beaded jewelry you made in kindergarten. There's a vast array of incredibly-looking beads. It's easy to create something that looks entirely professional and unique.
Nothing fits a natural aesthetic more beautifully than wooden jewelry. The biggest benefit? The sheer quantity of materials you can work with. Here are just some of the types of wood you can use in your jewelry:
- Walnut Ebony
There are multiple decorating techniques you can use on these different types of wood. Wood burning is an excellent method for doing some simple designs.
Or, if you want to get advanced, you can try laser engraving. You can also express the artist in you by dying or painting on the wood. This material is excellent for people who want to say more creativity in their jewelry designs.
When most people think of metalsmithing, they picture a big furnace smelting metal for some fantasy movie. The fabulous news is that you don't need a giant furnace to work with this material.
All metalsmithing is the manipulation of metal into jewelry and other objects. However, remember that you will need to learn an entirely different set of skills than other types of jewelry. This includes things like:
Unless you're serious about it, metal jewelry differs from the material you want to start with. However, once you master gold, silver, copper, and platinum, the world's your oyster in terms of jewelry making.
Native American tribal cultures have been creating leather jewelry for centuries. The most significant benefit of leather material is its flexibility. It's easy to cut and shape into whatever type of jewelry you want. Plus, it's also quite soft.
This makes necklaces and bracelets made out of it comfortable to wear. It's also common to join leather with other jewelry materials. For instance, you might place beads outside a leather bracelet.
Study Basic Jewelry Measurements
If you're making jewelry for yourself or a friend, grab a measuring tape. But it's a different story if you're making jewelry for the average Joe. Familiarize yourself with the standard jewelry measurements.
When you do, these people can enjoy them without having to get fitted. For example, the standard size for women's bracelets is around seven inches (between eight to eleven for men). Necklace measurements are more complicated.
Why? Because it depends on the specific style. Choker necklaces are around fourteen to sixteen inches in length. Meanwhile, long necklaces that dip below the collarbone are about seventeen inches for women (and eighteen inches for men).
Watch Videos or Read Books on Skills and Techniques
Before you start jewelry making, you'll want to know some basic skills. We recommend looking into things like:
- Opening jump rings
- Cutting wire
- Wire working
- Using jigs and pegs
There are many more skills that you can learn, but these are some great intro ones. The good news is that plenty of resources can teach you jewelry making. You can start with free ones, like YouTube tutorials.
Social media like Instagram and TikTok are great resources for connecting with the jewelry-making community. Once you learn basic skills, you should pay for some teaching resources. Purchase books about jewelry making.
Not much of a reader? You can enroll in a jewelry-making class. This is a perfect option if you're a hands-on learner because it forces you to dive in. Plus, you can access a skilled instructor if you hit some road bumps with your learning.
Practice Before Diving In
Working with things like jewelry wire can be difficult for people initially. It's easy to get frustrated if you try skipping the practice and diving right into the real thing. Remember that wire can be quite costly. As such, we recommend investing in some practice wire before you begin.
Copper wire is good for most practices because it mimics actual jewelry wire and is inexpensive. Practice the technique that's required for whatever type of jewelry you want to make.
Remember that repetition is key here. It might be boring, but when you master these movements, you can create much more interesting jewelry.
Jewelry is very much a build-block skill. That means once you get a handle on the fundamentals, you can easily expand to more unique, hard-to-work-with materials.
How to Make Simple Earrings
Making simple earrings is relatively straightforward. All you need is three pairs of pieces. First, gather two earring findings and a couple of jump rings. Then, find a charm that you want to hang from them.
Crystals would suit this, but use whatever type of charm you're inspired by. Once you've gathered all your materials, find a pair of pliers. Get your jump rings and use the pliers to open them both up.
Now, find the holes in your charms and feed them through the now-opened jump ring. Some treats don't have a distinct side that needs to face forward. However, if your charms do, ensure they meet the right way before feeding them into the jump ring.
Once your appeal is secure, you can add the earring findings. Your earring is now ready to seal up! Place one set of pliers on one side of the jump ring. This will hold it steady as you close it. Then, with another set of pliers, close the ring until it's nice and secure.
Now you have an easy pair of earrings that are easy to crank out once you get skilled. To graduate with more complicated designs, check out our earring collection for more inspiration.
How to Make Simple Bracelets
Making a bracelet can be a little more complicated than making earrings. So let's start with a relatively easy bracelet: a beaded one. First, locate some beads that you like and a beading wire to attach them to.
You will also need wire cutters, jump rings, closing clasps, and crimp beads. To get started, place the beads on the wire in an order you like.
We recommend not cutting the beading wire at this point. This is so you can make size adjustments as you create. Do you have the rough amount of beads on?
Break out the measuring tape. Measure the wrist of the individual you're making it for. Add or remove beads to get them to your desired length. Add a crimp bead at the end. Secure it, then add a jump ring to the crimp.
Make sure you leave yourself a bit of room at the end of the wire. That way, you have enough space to take the tag end and thread it back through to meet the end crimp bead. At this stage, the jump ring should be dangling from the wire.
Keep winding the beads through the wire until the jump ring feels friendly and secure. Then, use two pairs of pliers to secure the crimping bead, just like you did with the earrings.
If you end up getting poked by excess wire, use some wire cutters to get rid of any excess. Once you master the simple beaded bracelet, you can move on to more complicated designs. For inspiration, check out our collection.
Start Designing Your Jewelry
It's best to practice simple designs and tutorials while still learning. However, once you get some skills, feel free to begin designing your own jewelry. Take inspiration from things that inspire you.
For example, if you love astrology, create a line of necklaces depicting all of the signs. Or take inspiration from movies and nature. The best types of jewelry designs come from a place of love for whatever they're depicting.
Decide if You Want to Do It as a Hobby or a Career
Many people start jewelry making as a casual hobby. However, after a few pieces, they quickly realize that the practice is a passion for them. When this happens, they think, Can I make this a career? It's entirely possible to make a living off of jewelry making.
However, just because it's possible doesn't always mean it's the right call for you. How do you determine if making jewelry should be a hobby or a career? First, think about time commitments.
Most people spend roughly 20% of their time on a hobby. If you make it a job, you'll likely need to triple that amount. If demand is great enough, it can eat up even more of your time.
Ask yourself honestly if the practice of making jewelry will still be fulfilling when it uses up so much of your time. Next, there are the practical concerns of running a business.
Taxes, website design, order fulfillment, customer service, and marketing are all things you'll need to worry about. Some people can tackle all of these roles at once. Others will require a lot of help. Lastly, ask yourself if you'll still love doing this year down the line.
Many people turn a passionate hobby into a career. However, a large percentage unintentionally end up hating the thing they once loved.
Turning your passion into a job can have a way of doing this. So ask yourself if you're prepared for a once relaxing activity to become stressful.
Can You Make Money in Jewelry Making?
It's possible to make good money with jewelry making. However, like anything else, it requires business knowledge and practical experience. If you create products that people like and you can promote them in a way that sells, jewelry making can be a career for you.
You need to learn about the challenges before you begin. First, the start-up costs can be pretty high. Not only do you need raw materials (which often feature things like gems, gold, and silver), but you also need professional equipment.
When you first start, you'll likely be able to work out of your home. When your operation gets more extensive, you must find a viable studio space that continues to add to your costs. That being said, there are certainly benefits to professional jewelry making.
For one thing, you get to be your own boss. You also get to perfect both your technical and creative abilities throughout the day. Lastly, there's the satisfaction of seeing clients wear your jewelry. It's a great feeling to know that your work adds beauty to the world.
Are you curious about discovering the secret of how to make jewelry that sells? You can explore this resource which gives you all our secrets from us to you.
What's the Best Type of Jewelry to Start With?
The best type of jewelry to start with is whatever keeps you returning to the hobby or skill. But if you're looking for a good entry point, you can't go wrong with wire wrapping. It's not expensive, and there are tons of resources online for getting good at it.
Once you get the hang of wire wrapping, you'll have a much easier time working with different wire types for other jewelry. This makes it a good baseline skill to build upon.
How Do You Price Jewelry?
To sell jewelry, you need to know what it's worth. Sadly, many new artists tend to undervalue their work drastically. Why? Because they tend only to factor in the raw materials used. This causes them to ignore other significant costs like:
- Shipping and handling
- Selling fees
- Packaging costs
- Display material for in-person sales
- Professional photography for websites
- Marketing and branding
- Market prices
- Your labor
The last one is essential. Many people think they shouldn't charge for the labor because they love making jewelry. Remember that if you want to make jewelry a business, your time is money. You should be adequately compensated for the hours that you put into each piece.
Studying the Experts Like Lackore Couture
What is the best way to get better at something? Learn from the greats. Once you grasp the basics of jewelry making, start exploring designers and businesses that you respect. Study the styles and what makes their jewelry unique.
If you want to eventually sell your jewelry one day, you should also pay attention to their business model. How do they price their jewelry? What marketing points help them stand out? Here at Lackore Couture, we hand-make every piece of jewelry that we sell.
We also take design trends that are equally inspired by the latest fad and combine them with the timeless themes of nature.
That way, we create something relevant to fashion and timeless. We discuss how we make our jewelry on this page here. Read it over and study some of our products to inspire you to make your own.
Don't want to miss the latest fashion trends? Check out this guide here, where we break down the latest changes.
The Importance of Creating Your Jewelry
Have you ever had a friend that's really into carpentry? Often when these individuals finish their first carpentry project, they'll be left with a lop-sided, rough-textured piece of furniture or art.
However, from the look on their face, you might think they just made a masterpiece. That's the power of creating your crafts. As this resource notes, numerous health benefits come with making your own jewelry.
In addition to relieving anxiety and stress, you also forge a personal connection with the piece you're making. This improves your quality of life and makes whatever you're making feel special in a way that's impossible from mass-produced jewelry.
We know that your first few jewelry pieces might look less than stellar. However, we'd encourage you to keep practicing. If you get enough experience, then your homemade jewelry might one day be good enough to sell.