Sunday, December 2, 2012

Second Trunk Show...

I think I am getting the hang of the art of hosting a trunk show! Yesterday was my second show and it was VERY VERY profitable! I used what I learned from the 1st trunk show and it worked!

I had 14 people come and everyone had nothing but positive things to say about my jewelry and the food! I eliminated some of the dished and it was the perfect amount! Still had some left overs, but overall it was awesome!

Also reviewed the types of things that people bought last time and realized I need to rearrange my set up to have more necklaces right when people walk in instead of my huge earring display:-) I also put all the appetizers in the living room instead of the kitchen so people would eat as the chatted and looked at jewelry! Lastly, I had my sister sit in the kitchen as the cashier so there was a central location for them to come and buy their jewelry!

Only upgrade is to get little baskets for people to carry their purchases around in (which is awesome because that  means people had too many things in their hands), so I will look at finding some little cheap baskets to have at the next show:-)

Next up, my family and friends trunk show in two weeks! I need to make A LOT of new jewelry in order to replace what I sold:-) Let the creating begin!

Until next time...

Sunday, November 11, 2012

First Trunk Show...

Yesterday, I had my first trunk show! IT was a huge success because I MADE MONEY!:-) It was overall a great experience and I learned a lot.

On friday, I had 16 people coming...but only 7 showed up, which was a little frustrating because we had so much food. But it was a learning experience. Everyone who came bought something, so obviously people love the stuff I made!

Okay, so what I learned...
1. I need to send out reminders the day before through the evite and also send out text messages to ensure that people are still coming.
2. Make less food!
3. Had the right amount of alcohol for the 7 people, so need more next time.
4. Need to rearrange my set up, so people buy more necklaces because a lot of earrings sold!

Things I will do the same...
1. Make the same type of drinks because I got really positive feedback about them!
2. Make the same food, but cut out come of the options.
3. Do a 10% off discount for everyone who buys at the show because it was an incentive for them to buy there instead of buying later:-)

Pictures, Pictures, Pictures...



Display and Set up!

So, hoping to be successful on my next two shows also! Loving every moment of this journey!:-)

Monday, November 5, 2012

The Art of Hosting a Trunk Show...

So, I am learning that throwing a jewelry trunk show is much more involved than one would think. I am having one of my three shows this coming Saturday and I have kicked into gear with the planning.

Questions I have asked myself...Am I making enough food??? How much should I have to drink??? Where should I display the jewelry in my house??? I have been researching, but there isn't much out there about hosting an trunk show of your own jewelry. Doing shows through bigger companies is slightly different because they give you more support since they have consultants do them all the time!

I have gotten a great response from family, friends, and co workers about coming, which is GREAT! Everyone is really excited and so am I, but the nervousness has also start to set in! EEEEKKK!

I came to realize that food wise making stuff early in the week and freezing it would be a safe way to go. Then all I have to do is pop them in the oven and I am ready to go! Here is what I have so far...the 1st picture is some pizza rolls and the 2nd is mozzarella sticks!

Food wise...I am making lots of cold dips, so again I don't have to worry about heating stuff up! I will continue to post all week about my process in preparing for my jewelry shows! 

Being a business owner has opened me up to so many opportunities that has helped me grow as a person and learn a lot! I am always thinking of creative new ways to get my jewelry out there! I will keep you posted on my progress!:-)

Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Jewelry Trunk Shows...

I am back! It has been awhile since I have posted anything to my blog, but here goes nothing!

I have recently decided to scheduled some trunk shows hosted at my house to exhibit my jewelry to co-workers, family, and friends! I am very exciting about planning the party and hoping that I will generate from revenue from it!

Since I am now a seasoned craft show exhibitor (well kinda), I have noticed at a lot of the shows I have done that people come to these shows to not necessarily buy jewelry, which is a problem for me! My thought behind doing a trunk show at my house is that it focuses the attention onto my jewelry only;-) I am VERY exciting to host everyone at my house, eat some tasty food, and enjoy some cocktails!

Given the size of my staff, family, and friends, I had to set up 3 different shows so that we don't have too many people at one time! It has also worked out because when people can't come to one show then I can give them other options, which has been proven to be VERY helpful!

I started the invitation process by sending out evites, which are awesome because it keeps track of your numbers and allows you to send messages to people through the site! I have also designed my own invitations through vista print that I am mailing out and handing out at school! You can see my creative work below! Through this jewelry endeavor, I have realized that I have quite the eye for graphic design...who knew!

So what is next you ask? Well now I am planning food and continuing to follow up with people about their RSVP for the show! I will keep you updated on my progress and hopefully this will prove to be very helpful with sales!:) Until next time...

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Dark and Stormy...

This past weekend I did the Maryland Seafood Festival and it was a quite eventful weekend! Here is a little recap...

The first day was VERY VERY windy! Luckily I brought the sides to my tent so I could keep my jewelry from flying everywhere. I have learned that WIND IS NOT MY doesn't bode well with light necklace busts!

Around 4:30 pm, the event staff started coming around saying that there was a storm coming. They suggested that we drop down our tent and put all of my jewels in the middle. Suddenly, I looked behind our tent to see this coming our way...

My sister and I went into survival mode. We put all of my jewelry into my plastic containers (which ended up saving all my jewelry) and did our best to secure the tent. We ran to the car and decided to wait it out, but with no end of the storm in sight we started towards our hotel! As we left Sandy point park we saw this...
 Which led to me to think that if this tree couldn't survive the was my tent going to survive. After dinner we went back to try and get into the park to check on my stuff, but it was blocked my cones. I had to hope for the best and wait to find out in the morning.

The next morning, my mom and I went back to the festival to find my tent in this condition...

The entire back part of my tent had snapped in half. BUT I only had two jewelry busts damaged, wet table cloths, and some jewelry that needed to be restrung. I kept reminding myself "it could be worse, it could be worse, it could be worse!"Here is the tent graveyard from all the tents damaged in the storm...

Then I jumped into survival mode again...we found the closest store open on Sunday and bought a new tent. At the end of the day, this is what my new tent and set up looked like..

One of the vendors creatively made a memorial structure for the tents that didn't survive the creative!

Overall, it was a great weekend! I learned a lot and made money:-) On to the next one...

Sunday, August 19, 2012

Balancing Act...

And so the school year begins again. Now starts the juggling act of balancing my full time job as a teacher with my jewelry hobby/job.

How do I do it you ask? Well, a lot of my making of jewelry I only do on the weekends. When I first started, I was working well into the night and I learned very quickly that I wouldn't be able to keep up at that pace. So, I committed to Sundays being my main beading day. I plan on continuing that with the start of the new school year.

As of now I have a lot of inventory, but I do need to continue to add to my inventory especially because of my upcoming festivals and shows I am taking part in this fall.

In a few weeks, I am going to be making my debut at a huge festival in Annapolis, Maryland. It is the Maryland Seafood Festival! It should be a good time for all and hopefully I will make some great money. In order to make sure that I have enough inventory, I set goals for myself for each of my categories and hopefully I will be able to meet those goals. The worst thing is to not have enough to sell someone who is interested in at a festival!

My jewelry business started as a hobby in order to get out some of my creativity outside of the classroom, but it has blossomed into this business. It is more than just a hobby to me for many reasons especially for the fact that I have invested a lot of my own money in this business. I want it to be successful. For that reason, I continually push myself creatively and as a business owner. Hopefully, this business continues to give me sanity and provide me with a way to spread my creativity with anyone and everyone! I am so excited for the possibilities!

And so the school year begins...wish me luck!

Maryland Seafood Festival information:

Wednesday, August 15, 2012

Changing, changing all the time

Last Saturday I did my farmers market again and I decided to change some of my displays. The whole process of my jewelry display seems to be changing and evolving. Here are some new pictures of my display. I am not completely satisfied with it, but I will continue to perfect it! I did add some taller necklace busts, which really helped with my longer necklaces. Always changing, changing...

Thursday, August 9, 2012

Briggs-Chaney Greencastle Farmers and Artisans Market

Almost every Saturday you will find me at the BCG Market off Briggs Chaney Road. It was the first market where I sold jewelry. I love networking and selling my jewels every Saturday. Normal market hours are 10-2. The market has amazing fresh fruits and veggies as well as different vendors selling jewelry and clothing.

For those of you in the area, this Saturday is Kids' Day Festival at the market. The hours are extended from 10-4 for all the festivities. Some things to look forward to on this Saturday include face painting, a costume parade at noon, hula hoop contest, and a water-melon eating contest! It should be lots of fun for all the kids in the area to come out and enjoy while their parents pick up fresh veggies and "A Touch of Jewels"!

For more information check out the website: You can also find more information on their Facebook page:

Check out some of the things you can buy at the market! All of these pictures were taken by the market manager:-)


It's been awhile since I have posted something, but I am back to talk about the phases that my creativity has gone through over the past 8 months!

I just added about 20-25 new things to my collection and as I was creating I realized that my jewelry designing has gone through many phases.

I started out creating simple jewelry with simple designs and stones, but I have continued to add and develop new techniques. Many times I inspired when I create custom pieces, which is great because my customers are giving me inspiration. For example using chain with links and stringing chain instead of just jewelry wire. This allows for the stringing material to be part of the design also.

Another phase I went through was the use of cabochons and gluing them into settings. I liked doing these pieces because it gives an option for some of my customers that are as adventurous with the colors that they wear in their jewels.

The current phase that I am in with my jewelry right now is what I would like to call my "earthy" phase. I have enjoyed making slightly more eccentric pieces that include beads made from bone, horn, and wood.

One of my main goals in my jewelry is to create something for EVERYONE! I think about what I would wear and sometimes I am not in the mood for a chunky, dramatic necklace. So all of my phases have allowed for me to have a lot of different things for anyone who loves to wear jewelry. I wonder what my next phase will be...

Wednesday, July 25, 2012

My Jewelry Process...

Many people at my shows ask me how I come up with the designs for my jewelry pieces. So here it is...

The first thing I look at when buying my beads are the color combinations that would go well together and compliment each other. Then I start to design...

I mainly look at using different kinds of beads that have different textures. For example using freshwater pearls with amazonite tumbled nuggets. This gives it some dimension. After only 6 months of making jewelry, I have started to be able design just by trying out different things. Sometimes I put things on the jewelry wire and don't like them, so I change it. I keep changing it until I love it!

My main motto when making jewelry is asking myself "would I wear that?" As a lot of my co-workers can attest to the fact that I wear my own jewelry on a daily basis because I am a walking billboard for my business.

I have a couple principals that I live by when creating new jewelry pieces. One of them I mentioned above about wearing my own jewelry. Secondly, I only make ONE of each piece of jewelry unless I have a customer request to have remake something. I like this because then my customers don't have to worry about walking into a party and having someone else wearing the same necklace. They are all one of a kind creations! I do have a "catalog" at craft shows that have pictures of sold items, so customers can choose from those designs as well. Lastly, I go above and beyond to bargain shop for my beads because I want to make my jewelry reasonably priced. I really try and never buy beads full price, which in turn makes my jewelry more cost effective.

The best part about this journey is that I am learning all along with way different jewelry making techniques and different aspects about small business. Also, it is a great stress relief from my full time job of being a teacher!

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Jewelry Photography...

When I started this business, I knew that I would need awesome pictures of my jewels for my etsy shop as well as for my "catalogs" I have on display at the craft shows. I decided early on that I wanted to have a lot of inventory, but not display everything on my table. Sometimes too much on a table can be overwhelming for customers.

Luckily, I have a friend who I grew up with that takes awesome pictures. I contacted her and she was excited to try a different type of photography of things that don't move (unlike people). Her name is Liz Cayne. You can find her work on her page on Facebook: Liz Cayne Photography. I have a link under resources on my blog. She really helped me with the colors in the background of the pictures and her ideas about colors inspired my display at the craft fairs. I love to look back at some of my first things I made to see how much I have grown in my technique and ideas. My favorite thing about the pictures are how artistic they are and how they show up close shots of the beads that I use. So here are some of the awesome pictures of my jewelry...

Monday, July 23, 2012

My Display...

I am very proud of my display and have spent hours perfecting it. This business is not only about making the jewelry but displaying it to make it accessible to people shopping as well as to catch the eye of someone walking by! I love the pops of color and the flowers make it feel like you are walking into a store.

I am very proud of my display in the middle of this table. I took a rustic looking open frame and stapled wire (used for gardening) into the back of the frame. All I needed was some "s" hooks and I made my own jewelry display. My favorite thing is using things you normally wouldn't consider to display my jewelry. 


My display has grown and developed significantly from when I first started the market. Check out my "old" set-up. It is cool for me to look back (not so long ago) and see how much I have added to my display and set up.