A New Look!


 

Emily Wickersham modeling our turquoise leather necklace- we can make it for you in almost any color.

Emily you are too adorable!My website just got a new look! Take a peek at www.pamolderdesigns.com.We have more featured items on our home page for an improved shopping experience and a carousel sporting more pictures AND our model, star of NCIS, Emily Wickersham!

We have also added a new secure check-out.

All just in time for the holidays- handcrafted jewelry with a contemporary twist and quality guaranteed. And if you order now take 15% off your entire order! Use Promo THANKS and thank you!earrings_hoops_with_pyrite_rosette__04032.1375842170.200.285

Labradorite and pink will look fabulous with gray the big color for Fall 2015.
Labradorite and pink will look fabulous with gray -the big color for Winter 2015.

Getting Ready for Holiday Jewelry Sales


imageIt’s true, most artisan jewelers make most of their sales and profit during the last two months of the year! So how do you capture those free wheeling holiday buyers?

Sadly, times have changed and the term free wheeling buyers is a thing of the past!Most customers are looking for moderate pricing and value this time of year too. But they are also looking for something special, so that ‘s where you come in.

Think of ways you can promote your jewelry like the big retailers do.Promotions often attract customers that in the end, find something else they like better and pay full price for. In all your messaging emphasis the nature of your work. Buyers of handmade items understand their intristic qualityand uniqueness.

Start early and prepare to get as much exposure as possible. Find time to talk to all your store buyers. Schedule your calls to say thank you for their business all year. Make sure they are well stocked with your merchandise.If you do craft shows, make sure they were booked last August,and if not,create your own events or partner with local retailers and friends to have jewelery parties in their homes. Look for pop-up store opportunities too!

Use Constant Contact of Mail Chimp to broadcast a newsletter with your holiday schedule so people know where to find you and make sure it is linked to all your social media sites. Always use great photography in your emails.if you have banners or a schedule of events page on your website, update it.

I do feature my more expensive pieces around the holidays since men often are looking to fufill their wives’ desires and many women pre-shop! In addition, I keep an abundance of moderate priced items for the “other” people that might otherwise get a gift card! A wide variety of prices will help your sales since no one wants to go away empty handed. As always, my site http://www.pamolderdesigns.com is updated and features new items. Think Christmas, Hanukah, New Years Eve and Valentines Day now!

I just moved to Newburyport, MA and will be opening a store in 6 months, however, sadly construction is just beginning and the shop will not be ready for the holiday season. To take advantage of my windows, I am covering them with brown paper and twinkly lights. A handwritten message will say, “We aren’t here yet…but we are online at www.pamolderdesigns.com and follow our progress on Facebook”. I am confident this message will attract some new customers in time for the hoildays, but if you have any ideas- chime in!

Brand New Designs!


Golden quartz on a modern silver loopy chain
Golden quartz on a modern silver loopy chain

We have been working tirelessly in our studio to come up with new jewelry for Fall 2014!  My largest customer, the Sundance Catalog, start looking a year before for Fall merchandise.

Lucky for us, most of our handmade designer jewelry is seasonless so you can buy these pieces right now on our website! Her’s our Barcelona Necklace, named after the famous city I have yet to visit! I want to go, so perhaps this will be my tailsman and get me there. Have you been? What were the highlights, I would really love to know!

earring_barcelona

While we are at it, here are our favorite Barcelona Earrings to go with it! Lightweight silver with the same golden hues of golden semi-precious stones! Rutilated and Whiskey quartz, Mandarin Garnet, cascade from a loopy silver chain.

Creating a Website and Social Media 101


Blue Opal & Mother of Pearl necklaces by Pam Older Designs
Blue Opal & Mother of Pearl necklaces by Pam Older Designs

Need a website and want t get started marketing your jewelry? Building a website and developing a strong online presence takes time, patience and a budget. Here are the basics so you can begin to formulate what you can do yourself and what you will need to outsource or delegate to a team member. First of all you will need to register a domain name and sign up with a web host – a company that has many computers connected to the Internet. Once you develop your website, your web pages will be hosted on their computers so everyone in the world will be able to view your site. In essence it is your site’s home and you pay an annual fee to live there. The purpose and complexity of your website will determine the cost to build one. If you want to provide full e-commerce capabilities you will need to invest in a website that will support all that is needed for that type of site. Before you seek a designer/developer, look at lots of websites to see what other companies and artisans in your field are doing stylistically. Make a list of sites with features you like and communicate those to the graphic designer and/or web developer that you will choose. You need to be part of the process or you will end up spending more money redoing your site. After your research, you should begin the process of interviewing graphic designers and/or web developers so that you can see their portfolio of work and what other services they offer. You might want to use a designer for the appearance and a web developer for the technical implementation, or you may find a web developer with designers on staff. Through the interview process you will begin to understand what is possible in terms of design, features, expertise and the cost of your project. Look for designers that can incorporate great design with animation, video and simple navigation. It’s always a good idea to provide an incentive to the buyer on your home page or through out your site; perhaps a coupon offering 10% off for first time buyers, or a message like “sign up for our emails and receive 20% off your first pair of earrings”. Buyers expect and respond to promotional offers, so let the designer know about these needs upfront as well. Once you have chosen a designer, find the best web platform-to build your site upon. The days are gone where someone has to build a website from scratch. Today’s web platforms are really E-Commerce Content Management Systems (CMS) that come with hundreds of sophisticated features, many that you will use. Read the rest of my article – The Basics of Website Creation and Social Media- click here!

Feel free to ask me any questions. If I don’t know the answers I can get you in touch with someone who does!

Spring Weekend in NYC


Here's what to wear!
Here’s what to wear!

Here’s the recipe for a great weekend in New York City! Choose a gorgeous day to take a very early walk on the High Line, have brunch at  Good Enough to eat on the Upper Westside and then go to see the Cindy Sherman show at  MOMO.  Dinner at the adorable West Village restaurant the Owl. At some point- off hours, or you won’t get in, sneak in to the best ramen joint in NYC- Totto in Hell’s Kitchen.  Before you head home finish it up with a walk up to Zabars, stopping at a cafe to watch humanity stroll by!  More time? get a ticket to a matinee and leave feeling like you got a real taste of the city- till next time! What to wear- I wore this pretty Pam Older Designs one of a kind necklace made from tanzanite, mandarin garnets and rutilated quartz .

Setting Up a Handmade Jewelry Business- Part One


pearl earring

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!

Bridal Jewelry You can Design and Afford


Your dream wedding- an exquisite bridal gown, a gracious venue and your gorgeous bridal party dressed in their dresses and smiles!  Where do you go for the  perfect bridal jewelry? As a jewelry designer I have access to stones in every color of the rainbow, gold or silver and the creativity to make your jewelry dreams come true.  If it’s diamonds in platinum or a simple silver necklace, Pam Older Designs can make handcrafted bridal jewelry the way you envision it- customized to the women you are giving it to.

Pam Older Designs offers customized jewelry for brides, bridesmaids and flower girls. Select from existing styles or collaborate with us on designs for handmade earrings and necklaces that will enhance your wedding. Send us pictures of your dresses, swatches of fabric and other materials that you would like to us to use as inspiration. Our semiprecious stones will  flatter your wedding party and make unique gifts.

Like most brides these days, you are most likely looking for jewelry that accents the colors of the dresses you have chosen for your bridal party.  The semiprecious stone earrings and necklaces we make for them will become a cherished gift – a personal thank you  for being part of your wedding day. Pam Older Designs has worked with many brides to design their perfect bridal jewelry.  Westchester Weddings and Bridal Guide Magazine  both featured my handmade jewelry! One of my favorite pictures in The Bridal Guide  is a long coral necklace they used in a destination wedding article.

Color is big right now and many of my designs on http://www.pamolderdesigns.com work for wedding jewelry. I adore working with brides to custom make artisan wedding jewelry. Just give us some notice so we can work with you to find the most gorgeous materials available.   I truly lovve making beautiful bridal jewelry – its my way of making a meaningful contribution to all the beautiful brides on their wedding day!