Setting up a handmade jewelry business involves some things you might not even consider, in fact you may be surprised to find yourself spending most of your time in activities somewhat unrelated to making handmade earrings and necklaces! I think this post may be one of many delving into this topic.
Without question you will be spending time selling your wares. If you are going to be successful, it means selling a lot and keeping your costs under control. Resisting all those gorgeous stones and materials is difficult for us at Pam Older Designs, and it will be for you too, but of course an artists needs materials to create. However, selling is key and you must be creative about how and where you sell to maximize your efforts and diligent about selling all the time. If you are just starting out you will probably start selling to your friends, local shops and exhibiting at local crafts shows. Try to find venues where you do not have to pay too much to make those sales. As your business grows, pay attention to trade shows that cater to galleries, museum gift stores and boutiques. In the New York area, January means shows where buyers are already buying for Spring. Christmas jewelry buyers start in August! Preparation for these shows like the Buyers Market of American Craft or the New York Gift Show start just as your Christmas and Spring peak selling times end.
The single most important thing you need is a camera, proficiency in taking good clear pictures and the ability to retouch images. These are advantages you cannot underestimate. You will need to save images for print, email, your website and promotional opportunities. Eventually you may have a catalog or line sheets. Start photographing- or have someone do it for you to save time. You will need a library of shots saved at hi resolution for print and low resolution for the web. Marketing never stops? I have spent more time taking pictures and photo re-touching than I would ever have imagined. Good photography is an absolute necessity and the sooner you have it the easier it will be for you to get the word out about your business!
What to buy on my website? Try this gorgeous necklace that will add bling to anything you wear!