Saturday, September 8
BEFORE AND AFTER...
Yesterday I picked up some old items from a local shop. She had found my old display from my "first attempt" at the charm jewelry. For those of you that don't remember, the charm jewelry started just about 2 years ago now in the regular shop. It consisted of 3 listings, 6 color options, 3 font options, and a handful of bead/metal charms. For the number of products I had listed, I had a great response, and knew that I had to develop the idea more.
I had an idea in my head about what the charm shop would look like, what it would carry, and what kind of following it would have, but I could have never imagined it would have come so far in such a short amount of time. Not only are there 100's of option to choose from, a ton more colors, so many ways to wear them, but I've also added the additional level of customization with being able to use your child's own handwriting, silhouettes, or foot/hand prints.
Plus the jewelry itself has come a long way. I've learned as a metalsmith, but also sourced better products for you. On the left above is what the jewelry looked like 2 years ago. It's hard to tell in the picture, but I was shocked yesterday when I picked it up. What I am offering now far exceeds the quality in previous years. Here's what's changed:
The paper is better. I'm using high, archival quality paper which is smooth. Prior the texture of the paper took away from the printing.
They are now almost 100% waterproof. I've played with lots of different products, but what you don't see in the pictures is that they are really now waterproof. Over the past summer I've swam, showered and even washed in the laundry my charm jewelry... they are still intact and maybe even a little shinier! No I still don't recommend you doing this all the time a the sealant could wear down since we aren't reapplying it over and over again, but it's nice to know that when accidents like this happen you don't have to worry about losing such a great piece!
The glass I have changed to over the past 2 years is just so much better quality. It's clearer, crisper and more precise in size. What you can't see very well in the picture is that before some of the glass pieces were irregular shaped or bubbled on the side causing the metal to be mishapped in the final product.
When comparing the two side by side I can tell that my skills are better. I'm offering something that's joints are soldered tight and finished well. The pieces are top quality and ensure that they last a lifetime! Plus with the help of a few new tools the metal is prettier. The oxidized look is smoother and super shiny. The prior finish is matte and less striking. Plus I'm now able to offer the "bright silver" finish for those who like it which I couldn't before.
I cannot wait to see where the jewelry takes me in the next 2 years. Improving is something I love to do! Not only offering more options, but a better product.