Mimi and her girls

Mimi and her girls
Mimi and her girls

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

The Workspace - November Blog Challenge

My Etsy team, the Aspiring Metalsmiths, decided it would be fun for each of us to show where we work to creat all our shiny things for our shops. Well, I call anything a challenge when it comes to organizing a teeny tiny space where I have collected 10 pounds of necessary supplies and tried to store it in an area that should never have more than 2 max!  I don't have a lot of fancy tools, or big professional items like a rolling mill or kiln or even a flex shaft ( that's a big girl tool that lets you change drill bits, polishing wheels and other necessities with ease- it also lets you control the speed at which you use these things). Nope, I have basics- a dremel drill- which has only 4 speeds with just a switch, a small torch, no big tanks of fuel would fit in my space and lots of hammers and pliers.
So first, the birds eye view of where I start creating my rings, bangles and necklaces.

You will note in the background I have a poster important to all women jewelers, Les Aromes du Vin, the aromas of wine, this is my reminder that if I am productive, I get a nice glass of wine at the end of a successful project! On the right is my dremel, back, some of my pliers, drawers contain hammers, files, and all sorts of scribes, dividers, calipers and even used dental tools for getting in tiny spaces (the dentist is every jewelers friend). Underneath are all my bracelet mandrels and just to the left is the tower of wire!!

Next, we all know I am a complete stone freak - Gollum had nothing on me "precious" - so so would think I have this amazing system for storing my gems and stones, being able to sooth my soul by glancing at all the pretty colors- oops- no space for that. Here's my "system" of storing gems and stones.

Next to the box on the left are 2 huge bags filled with those adorable origami boxes filled with individual stones from Cabbingrough http://www.etsy.com/shop/cabbingrough, who has the most gorgeous rocks! In the black box I have organized, again in bags and tiny bags for each stone type, all my faceted gemstones, to the right in little containers are my small to medium cabochon stones.

Now- on to where I actually put things together. Yup- not here- guess where?? The kitchen of course. I need a sink, I need fireproof counters, I need room!

Yes, my set up is very basic. Torch, soldering pad, tripod and a box full of tweezers, various solders and to the right of all this, near the sink is my pickle pot- small crockpots are great for pickle.

Now that you've seen my space, I hope you will really enjoy knowing where your lovely jewelry actually comes from. It's my home, my workplace and it's where I love to be! At the end of the day, when creating is done, and the wine poured, I grab a book from my shelf, curl up and read about yet another techniques I want to learn to do to make more pretty things. This last few weeks has been devoted to flush settings. They are much harder than I thought.

I sure hope you've enjoyed visiting my space. If you have time, listed below are some of my fellow teammies who have shared their space on their own blogs. Visit them and compare- we are all so different in what we create and how and where we work, it's lots of fun to see the differences and similarities!

Jessica Lopour - http://www.abellablue.com/blog
Jeanne Millman, Golden Water Creations http://www.goldenwatercreations.blogspot.com/
Sylvia Anderson www.SylviaAnderson.blogspot.com
Steph Stargell Designs http://stephstargell.com
Clarity, Scrollwork Designs, www.thesquarepegnation.blogspot.com
Brandy, The Frogs Pond http://thefrogspond.wordpress.com/
All Wired Up Jewelry Designs http://allwiredupjewelrydesigns.blogspot.com/
Esmeralda, SilverBlueberry, http://jewelry-by-silverblueberry.blogspot.com/
Heather, Misty Ridge Designs http://mistyridgedesigns.blogspot.com/
Joy http://joypeckjoy.blogspot.com/
Nancy Creations - http://nancysjewelrydesigns.blogspot.com/
Carole Axium http://www.caroleaxiumdesigns.com/journal/

Stacy/Form and Function  http:formandfunktionaccessories.blogspot.com
Lisa at http://sandytoesjewelry.blogspot.com/

Saturday, November 6, 2010

Private Sale in the Works

Before I start to tell my few but loyal readers all about my upcoming sale event, I have to do a little bragging. My team leader on Aspiring Metalsmiths Etsy, Clarity Collins of Scrollwork Designs http://www.etsy.com/shop/Scrollworkdesigns, toughed it out and submitted 10 items from designer members of our team. Now this was extremely difficult, since there are about 80 or more of us! To pick 10 items she took recommendations and her own personal knowledge of many of the artisans, took into account tine with the team, how much we support the team and all that good stuff. Well, we made it into the Holiday Gift Guide on Handmade Spark! We are all doing the happy dance on our forum. Take a peek and enjoy some of our handpicked items, many of which absolutely belong on your wish list or under your tree: http://www.handmadespark.com/blog/holiday-gift-guide-featuring-the-aspiring-metalsmiths/  - as you can see on my header- we even got a cool  button to use on our blogs!

Now, I'm not the most consistent blogger there is, but I do really good when it comes to running a sale and shipping out the goodies. I only do about 4 of these a year (I do still have a full time job that requires my attention over 40 hours a week!), so I try to make my sales worth it to my customers. This sale is for current customers only and for those who have asked to be added to my e-mail list for these sales. I don't want to spam anyone, so I always ask when someone buys if they'd like to be added, I post on facebook so fans can be added, and now I'll comment here- if you want some really good savings- head over to my Etsy shop, go to contact, and send me your e-mail so you can get the sales details! Just to be safe, here's the link to my shop: http://www.etsy.com/shop/PPennee, just look under my Shop owner section and hit contact, simple as that.

Just for a teaser- I usually give a 5% discount on stackable ring sets of 3 and 10% on 6 or more. Lots of people have big families, so getting mother's rings is a good start, then there's grandmother's rings, your best friend needs some for her kids, or heck your BFF just loves pretty jewelry. For my upcoming sale- sets of 3 or more will get 15% off and free shipping. The only restriction is that sets of 3-5 must contain at least one non-gemstone band, sets of 6 or more will need to have 2 non-gemstone bands- your choice, and I have 3 in stock and am adding more this coming week. The bands really do make the sets look great and they can also be worn alone when you just want something simple- and heck, they're really nice! So 2 regular priced rings that are $39 plus a band for $12 would be $90- your price will be $76.50- around $25/ring.

Teaser number 2: I made a real haul at my local gem show this weekend, I got some awesome 4mm green diopside, Burmese rubies and the most fabulous teal blue toumalines. These will be available for the private sale before they are offered in my shop -  when they're gone, I will remove the listing since I only got these for the sale. I will mark them as reserved, so only my private sale customers know they are available for sale.
Talk about your red and green for the holidays or a "Blue, Blue Christmas", these are really high quality and the sale I got will be passed on to you. Once the "reserve" is off, the price will go up for my regular shop listings.

I hope this little preview of my sale will inspire you to send me a quick e-mail and get your name on my list. Sale starts November 13 and runs for 1 week, after that prices revert to normal. More details to come when you get my Sales Event e-mail.