Having Your Own Jewelry Business
Jewelry is worn before clothing. Primitive people made jewelry
from feathers, wood, stones, shells berries, bones and teeth. In
Pharaoh's day, gold was the main medium. Not only was it soft
and easy to shape into a variety of designs, but it lasted a
lifetime too. Over the years, many craftsmen have earned a
living from making jewelry.
Making jewelry becomes a hobby for many people. This type of
hobby is one of the most satisfying occupations of all. You can
choose your own design, color and materials and finish up with a
unique piece for yourself or your friends. All you need is a
steady hand, a good eye and plenty of patience - and a few
trusty tools. So how do you start?
It depends on the kind of jewelry you want to make. It can be as
simple as threading beads onto a nylon thread, or taking classes
to learn something a little different, like wire wrap jewelry
Basically, wire wrap jewelry - as its name suggests - involves
using certain tools to bind and twist wires together into a
chosen design. The tools needed are all relatively cheap and
readily available. They are...
* Pliers of various kinds, eg, bent nose, flat nose round nose,
etc. * Wire cutters. * Ring mandrel. * Pin vise. * Swiss pattern
file. * A scale.
The wire itself comes in a variety of shapes, eg round, square,
triangle and many more. It is made of brass, copper, fine or
sterling silver, gold or gold filled with brass. Different
gauges are available, from thick (8 gauge) to thin (26 gauge).
Copper wire is so soft it is one of the best for beginners to
use. It can be coated with transparent acrylic to prevent
discoloring. Once your skill has increased you could try using
what is called gold filled wire. This is not wire filled with
gold, as the name seems to suggest. It consists of gold tubing
filled with a base metal, usually jewelry's brass, and is
available in many gauges, shapes and patterns. There is also a
choice of three colors; white, yellow and rose gold. It is so
durable it will last a lifetime. In fact, 17th century jewelry
made from gold filled wire has been passed down through the
generations and still exists in good condition today.
Special care needs to be taken to avoid scratching gold filled
wire because it is so soft. You must carefully file down all the
sharp edges and corners of your pliers - not too much, but just
enough to round them off slightly. Keep the finished jewelry in
a cotton padded box so it is not damaged by other pieces.
The basic techniques in making wire wrap jewelry include
twisting, wrapping, crimping, scrolling and shaping. These
skills are easy to learn and the turnaround time for each piece
is short. Design variations are endless as all kinds of
gemstones can be incorporated. It is the ideal jewelry to make
at home because you don't need complicated machinery, fire or
chemicals. Once you have become skilled at creating wire wrap
jewelry, you might even find a ready market for it.