Beading & ewelry making is not only a fascinating and addictive activity, but it also gives you the opportunity to wear what you’ve made! Many folks, though, are unsure where to begin.
Here are some simple pointers to help you get started crafting jewellery as a novice!
1. Decide which type of jewellery appeals to you the most
Because there are so many options, it can be intimidating when you first decide to try your hand at crafting jewellery.
It’s impractical to expect to learn to crochet, knit, hand-sew, quilt, and embroider all at once, just as you wouldn’t expect to learn to crochet, knit, hand-sew, quilt, and embroider all at once. Instead, start with one type and work your way up from there.
Perhaps you love the basic style and customization of metal stamped beading & jewelry making, or perhaps you prefer the beauty and feel of beaded jewellery. Perhaps you’d like to experiment with leather, clay, or glass.
Choose one medium to concentrate on first, understanding that you can always switch things up later… In fact, because of what you already know, the skills may even build on each other, making learning a new approach easier!
2. Learn a few fundamental skills
Whether you start with beads, clay metal, or another sort of jewellery, there are a few skills you’ll need for almost every creation
Once you’ve mastered these techniques, you may apply them to whatever project you’re working on!
3. Invest in high-quality equipment
It may be sufficient to “borrow” the wire cutters and pliers from your household toolbox for your first attempt. But the truth is that the better tools you have, the easier the process will be and the better your product will turn out.
It may appear to be an investment at first, especially when it comes to specialised tools like metal stamps, but they more than pay for themselves in the long run when you’re able to produce rather than buy beading & jewelry making, as well as make jewellery to give as gifts and/or sell to others.
4. Become familiar with the terms
What’s the difference between a head pin and a pin for the eyes? Is 12-gauge wire thicker than 20-gauge wire, or vice versa? What exactly are “findings”? You’ll need to be aware of this!
Make sure you know exactly what you need before you buy anything. It will save you the time, money, and aggravation of having to come back and replace products that are not really right for you.
There are many excellent resources available to you, such as this fundamental introduction to metal stamping.
5. Literally get your hands on some materials
There are a plethora of places to buy beading & jewelry making materials. Online stores like Goody Beads, Lima Beads, and P&J Tool Supply offer extensive inventory, and Etsy is a great place to look for just about anything.
I’d recommend going to a local craft store and physically getting your hands on some of these equipment and supplies before deciding on your preferred internet providers.
For example, I had no idea what a 4 mm bead looked like before ordering an entire pack, so when they arrived, I was surprised at how small they were.
Later on, if you’ve settled into a routine and figured out what you want to work with, go for the convenience of ordering online, but I still prefer the pleasure of seeing things for myself before I buy.
6. Have a well-organized and designated work area
Nothing is more aggravating to a crafter (or their family!) than having supplies strewn about the room. If you can’t locate what you’re looking for, you’re wasting time that could be spent creating.
Choose a room in your house, or at the very least a specific table, desk, drawer, or other area, to dedicate only to your passion. Sort your supplies and label, label, label once you have it. There are a variety of beading & jewelry making storage options available, including affordable bins and boxes with built-in dividers for storing various beads, findings, and other items.
Develop and commit to a system which works for you. You’ll always know what you have and it’ll be close at hand if inspiration strikes!
7. Look for ideas on Pinterest, blogs, and, of course, Craftsy
Sometimes a brilliant idea for a new piece of jewellery just pops into my head. But, more often than not, I am inspired by what I observe when it comes to producing jewellery. Look for ideas everywhere you go.
Examine the jewellery available for purchase in your favourite apparel and accessory shops. Take a look at Pinterest. Look through the jewellery archives of a handful of your favourite bloggers whose style you admire.
And, of course, look for inspiration right here on Craftsy! There are almost 2100 bracelet projects alone on this page, not to mention the over 11,000 total jewellery projects, which include necklaces, earrings, and more. You may come across a terrific tutorial that you want to follow step by step, or you may simply come across something that appeals to you and want to change the colours, size, or design to suit your own preferences.
8. Enroll in a class
Is there anything in particular you’d like to learn? Take a lesson and let a professional guide you through the process! You’ve already arrived at the correct location.
Craftsy has a variety of workshops where you can learn a variety of beading & jewelry making skills, some of which are even free.
You can enrol in a basic beginner level class or a course focused on a specific technique, such as wire wrapping or resin work.
You could also be able to learn in person by attending a class at your local craft or specialty bead store.
9. Don’t give up if you’re having a bad day
Making your own jewellery has a learning curve, just like any other talent. The first wire loop you try to make will be a complete disaster. That’s fine! Because the second one will look better, and the tenth one will have you feeling like a pro. Don’t let a failed or tough effort dampen your enthusiasm. Simply keep trying, practising, and remembering that all abilities take time to master.
10. Take chances
Don’t be afraid to try a new skill simply because it appears or sounds tough. I always enjoy giving people the opportunity to experiment with my metal stamping equipment and show how simple it is to produce their own unique items. Many people are scared by the concept, but once they have the correct tools, they are blown away by what they can accomplish!
Also, don’t limit yourself to a specific jewellery design, colour, or size. Experiment with your supplies, try new things, and see how they go!
Experiment with different materials to see what you can come up with. Some of my favourite pieces are ones that I wasn’t sure I’d appreciate when I first started working on them. The sky’s the limit…aim high!
Best wishes as you begin this exciting new activity. You’ll immediately discover that it’s absolutely addictive once you get started! You can’t claim I didn’t warn you! Make sure to share your own jewellery designs with us on Bluprint so we can see what you’ve come up with!