Designing Custom Jewelry


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Jewelry designing is not for someone who finds decision making daunting!  My assistants would say that disqualifies me immediately! The truth is I am a pretty good decision maker after years of experience except when faced with a thousand different gemstones, colors, cuts and other materials! Now add all the possible charms like the special one I use on my Buddha Necklace, our popular Breathe Deeply, our Lucky Elephant, Om and Lotus...That’s the dilemma, but also the fun of it.

So how does one chose? Obviously the prettiest combination and the trending styles make influence your choice, but I just ask myself-would I like to wear that right now?

A new piece starts with a simple design, an experimental color combination, and a choice of metals. Then the fun begins, much to the chagrin of my assistants. I usually like to see it in a few variations. At the end of this process there may be a number of new designs and maybe a coordinating collection of bracelets, earrings or necklaces.

But the process of deciding does not end here. I consider pricing- can I make something most people can afford? Do I have the materials in stock? Should I add diamonds? How long does it take to make? All of these considerations go into the mix.

Then I try it on- uh oh..can we change this to silver and make it longer? What if we….I can drive my assistants crazy.

In the end, my collection of handmade jewelry is affordable, pretty and well made. The final result is well considered. If the design is good my customers are going to like it.

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!

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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.

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


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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!