5 Years in Business as a Jewelry Artist

I am thinking about exploring more options with my business. In March I will have have been in business for 5 years!  Time really flies and I am so grateful to be able to run my own business and have such success in the first five years.

Custom Two Tree Pendant with recycled diamond

Custom Two Tree Pendant with Recycled Diamond

This got me to thinking.  I know that my business will morph and change throughout time and I am excited for some of the new projects I have conjured up for the next five years of my business.

Here are some of the things that I would like to do over the next 5 years:

  1. Video record my Silversmithing Classes and have them available for download.
  2. Have a studio outside of the house built on our property.
  3. Make my paintings or drawings into another product.
  4. Get my designs printed onto organic t-shirts.
  5. Photograph Jewelry on Models

I don’t know if these things will happen for sure, but I am excited to explore potential opportunities.

1.  Videotape Classes – Some of my concerns with this are the cost.  I am not entirely sure what this will cost.  I have started doing some preliminary research into this and hope that I can make it happen!  Another decision I will have to make with this is whether to record at Bella Beads, where I teach my classes, or in my home studio.  I think it might be a bit distracting for people who have paid to take the class if there is a camera rolling.  I have considered shooting and editing the video myself, but it may be better to have a trained professional do this for me.

Handmade Lockets by Beth Millner

Handmade Lockets by Beth Millner

2. Build a Studio– This is a big one.  I have wanted to build a studio closer to the road for customers to be able to stop in during ‘Open’ hours.  Currently my customers need to make an appointment with me before stopping in to place a custom order.  I think this works pretty well because I can prepare for them coming, but I think I may be missing a good deal of potential walk in customers.  There is also the concern of financing this type of project.  I also want my studio to be environmentally friendly, which may take come haggling with the code officials.  I am thinking of having a straw-bale building with solar power.  I also would like to have a casting set up with good ventilation.   I got a great deal on a bunch of used casting equipment and I really need to put it to use if I am going to have these items.  The studio space would be awesome if there were two somewhat separate spaces.  One room would be the gallery space and the other room would be my working area.  I would like to have these somewhat separate so the dust from my workshop will not get on all of the displays.  My grand idea is to have an attached sauna with a wood stove attached behind the studio.  I would have a sliding glass patio door between the sauna and the studio in order to control the heat.  Attached behind the sauna would hopefully be a greenhouse where we could have veggies grow later into the season and heat it somewhat with the sauna wood stove.  I am pretty set on this idea and have been thinking about it over the last year.  It is a huge commitment, but I think it would be very worthwhile.

Custom Sterling Silver Dragonfly Earrings

Custom Sterling Silver Dragonfly Earrings

3. Paintings: Many of you may not know that I am also a painter.  I have done a few paintings this winter and quite a pile last fall.  I would love to make my paintings into prints in order to lower the cost.  I would also like to make the paintings into other items such as greeting cards and maybe other paper goods.

Beth Millner Paintings

Beth Millner Paintings

4.  T-shirts: I make many digital designs from my drawings that are printed on paper and then glued to the metal as a template for sawing.  These digital designs could easily be printed onto t-shirts.  I have looked into having someone print some designs on organic t-shirts and then sell them online.  This might be a fun way to expand also.

Woodland Forest Locket by Beth Millner

Woodland Forest Locket by Beth Millner

5.  Model Shots: I would like to have pictures of my jewelry taken on models.  I think this would be great for my online presence to have some fun earthy ladies modeling my jewelry for photos to use on my website and possible for print.

  • My question for you is, which one of these things would you like me to move forward on into the future? Please leave a comment below!



Filed under Business Tips

9 responses to “5 Years in Business as a Jewelry Artist

  1. Lynn

    I love your studio design idea Beth! I hope that one comes to fruition for you.

  2. Congratulations on 5 years in business! These are all great goals! I would love to see online course available. I found your blog because I’m just getting started learning metalwork and the quality of your work so absolutely inspiring! I would love one day to be able to produce such beautiful pieces!

  3. Pingback: Jewelry Business Objectives: 2012 | Jewelry Business Blog

  4. I love your stuff! I’ll be buying one of those pendants or lockets soon, stunning. just my style too. and I am getting into jewelry making myself (very small stuff, bracelets & wire wrapped crystals) so I’m sure I’ll be on your blog a lot myself…my grandmother was into this a lot, she used to make copper leaves and wrap them on around driftwood etc…I would love to be on that level eventually, I actually found your page searching using blowtorches for jewelery making on google. anyway &… if you would ever like a model haha I’ve been told I’m alright haha

  5. Eliza Graves

    Your work is just stunning!!!!!
    I am wrapping up my first college semester in metalsmithing/jewelry 1 and having literally JUST finished my first ever locket, I am soooooo impressed with your quality and attention to detail!! I hope to become a professional jeweler and hope that my pieces can eventually be as gorgeous and well crafted as yours! I am loving ever part of jewelry (minus hinge making, lol!) and am having fun amassing all the wonderful tools and knowledge!
    I absolutely love your style and am also drawn to mountains, trees, birds, flowers, etc…it is so wonderful to find inspiration in nature! I look forward to seeing your videos and continued designs! ❤

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