Sunday, December 19, 2010

Why did you start making jewelry

It is time for another blog carnival of our SATEAM. This month's
theme is the question "why did you start making jewelry?".

My dad probably thinks it was in my genes because in the 70s
he was designing jewelry too. It was the big era of gemstones and
I remember him creating necklaces, bracelets, big clocks, lamp
shades and lots of other beautiful items.

Although at the time, being in my early teens, I wasn't interested
in jewelry at all.

In Summer 2004 it all began. I had to go to a routine check-up
to my doctor and I noticed that one of her assistances was
wearing a beautiful bracelet. I overcame the feeling of being
rude and complimented her on it and asked her where she got
it from.

To my astonishment she bought it from our local porcelain store.

After my check-up I had some time on my hands and decided
to have a look what was on offer in this store.

They still had about a dozen different beautiful bracelets displayed.

This is the one I bought:

A few days later I had a close look at all of its components and
found a designer tag. FIVA

Me being Mrs. Google found out that FIVA is a Dutch designer
who works with silver beads from Bali.

Ok, back to the search mask entering "bali beads".

Amazingly there was a shop called Bali Beads, it was even in
Germany, 70 minutes drive from the place where I lived.
They had a website too. Great.

To my delight I discovered that they offered a jewelry
making course with silver beads.
I was over the moon and booked a place in the next
available course.

During the course they supplied silver spacers, beads and
lampwork beads. Before that I never even knew those handmade
beads existed. I was instantly infected with the jewelry
making virus, ever heard of it?

This is the very first bracelet I made with the supplies available:

After the course one could buy all the materials and tools
needed to create some jewelry. Of course I could not resist
to get some goodies.

The necessary lampwork beads I bought at good old Ebay
where I met my dear friend Gail, Beadles and she
introduced me to etsy and the starving jewelry artists
which were then called cageycrafters I think but that is
another story *g.

A fews weeks later I had used up all my supplies and was
a happy owner of 12 bracelets.

I complained to a good friend of mine that I could never
decide which one to wear and that I could do with some
more supplies which were and still are not really inexpensive.

She had a great idea. She would invite some of her friends
and we could do a little jewelry party.

Said and done, I sold 10 bracelets with a profit of 2 Euros
each and had new money for more supplies.

I never made the bracelets for money but because of
the fun of creating them and it was great if someone else
liked my design and I could buy more materials to make
more bracelets.

After those events things simply developed from stringing
I went onto using silver wire, learning wire techniques a la
Sharilyn Miller, chainmailing, electro forming techniques,
wire-wrapping, soldering, fusing and last week I started
with etching (which is a disaster so far *gg).

Here two examples of the kind of "bracelets" I did lately:

All in all I am ever so glad I asked that lady where she got
the bracelet from, who knows what I would spend my
spare time with otherwise.....

Please check out the post of my fellow team members:


  1. Your travels from meeting beads to finished bracelets are much more direct than mine! Lovely work!


  2. Nice post, thanks for sharing I really love those bracelets. I also love making bracelets and it started when I'm in elementary years when the time that I don't have much money to buy some accessories so I got creative. But this holiday season I'm looking forward to have some gold charm.

  3. Sylvia - this is great - I loved reading about how you got involved in jewelry designing. I had no idea that I had an early involvement in your new lust for the wire, beads, and gems! I also love watching you progress in your artwork. Your creations reflect a maturity in your designs, skills, execution. It's great how you are constantly challenging yourself to learn more about new techniques and materials (i.e., filagree wire & etching). Am loving your Lady of the Night bracelet...gorgeous! Merry Christmas my friend and thanks for including me in your narration! Hugs!

  4. Sylvia that is a great story. it is fun learning about everyones journey. Your textured silver bangle is wonderful.

  5. Wonderful story - its interesting how one little event can trigger an almost life changing course. You have learnt so much along the way, I love your style.

  6. Beautiful! :) And yes, it's always interesting to hear how other people got into the craft. ^__^ Thanks for sharing this with us.

  7. Great and lovely described story! Very interesting to see the way you made!hugs, Romi

  8. Thx everybody for the nice comments. Wish you all a Happy Xmas and creative holidays.

  9. Nice post!!! thanks for sharing I really love those bracelets and nicely designed this bracelets.

  10. Thank you so much for sharing your story!!!