Share Your Expertise with Your Community
by Judy Ellis
Grandparent's Day is in September, and this is a wonderful day not only to reconnect with our families but also to look back at what we've accomplished this year - and what our legacy will be to the young people in our lives.

Many wire jewelry artists have stunned me over the years with their tips, shortcuts, and techniques to create the most amazing jewelry. I'm sure you have several habits that are second-nature to you but would make a world of difference to another artist!

Here are a few ideas to make sure your jewelry and your techniques and style will live on for many generations! Do you have even more ideas?
Share your value with others:

If you sell your work:

  • Include a slip of paper with each purchase that tells about your business and the steps you take to ensure your jewelry is the best

  • Show a short biography of your business on nice paper in a picture frame, so people can get to know you even if you're talking to other customers.

  • Offer an "About me" page on your website or Facebook page (if you have one) that explains how you got into making wire jewelry and and maye offer a peek at your workbench

  • Explain the materials you use: most people will understand the importance of your natural gemstones, gold-filled wire, Swarovski┬« beads, or Viking knit chain if you enclose a note or tell them specifically how they add to the piece's value. If you only use a certain type of materials, such as gemstones, lampwork beads, or sterling silver, add this to your business card!
  • If you make jewelry to give as gifts:

  • Include a "care card" that includes some tips for keeping the jewelry safe and clean

  • Slip in a note explaining why you chose a certain stone or style for that person

  • Always mention that you use heirloom-quality techniques (and materials, if you do) and that with good care, they will be able to pass this piece on to their grandchildren!
  • Pass on your skills:

  • Create a tutorial for a technique you've developed

  • Have a jewelry party for your friends, teaching each of them how to make a simple pair of earrings or chain necklace

  • Look for teaching opportunities in your area

  • Volunteer at a school for a day or even longer: teach a child the basics of wire jewelry (Check out this tip about children's bracelets and necklaces, and the comments on it, for sizing and ideas!)

  • Teach your children or grandchildren the basics of wire jewelry - or neighborhood children who are curious, too!

  • Get involved in the local lapidary, crafting, rock & gem, collector's, or other clubs in your area. Even if you're the only one who makes the exact thing you do, you'll learn a lot from your new friends - and they'll learn from you, too!
  • Materials

    DVD
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    Free Jewelry Instructional DVD - Introduction to Traditional Wire Jewelry
    free_dvd
    • Lesson Quantity: 1.00 pieces
    • Purchase Quantity: 1.00 each
    • Price: $0.00
    • Gold Club Price: $0.00
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    Free Introduction to Metalworking Instructional DVD
    free_metalworking_dvd
    • Lesson Quantity: 1.00 pieces
    • Purchase Quantity: 1.00 each
    • Price: $34.95
    • Gold Club Price: $26.21
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    Tools

    WireJewelry - Ultimate Wire-Pliers Jewelry Pliers with Case, Set of 5
    G15-20
    • G15-20
    • Lesson Quantity: 1.00 pieces
    • Purchase Quantity: 1.00 each
    • Price: $170.72
    • Gold Club Price: $128.04
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    Deluxe Soldering Kit
    G15-5
    • G15-5
    • Lesson Quantity: 1.00 pieces
    • Purchase Quantity: 1.00 each
    • Price: $116.97
    • Gold Club Price: $87.73
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    Basic Sawing Kit
    G15-7
    • G15-7
    • Lesson Quantity: 1.00 pieces
    • Purchase Quantity: 1.00 each
    • Price: $34.95
    • Gold Club Price: $26.21
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    7 Piece Mini TruStrike Hammer Set with Stand
    HAM-520.70
    • HAM-520.70
    • Lesson Quantity: 1.00 pieces
    • Purchase Quantity: 1.00 each
    • Price: $140.54
    • Gold Club Price: $105.40
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    • Category: Teaching
    • Technique(s): Teaching, General Education