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Thread: Should I be looking at trends?

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jun 2017
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    Default Should I be looking at trends?

    Hi everyone, happy Sunday

    I'm looking for a little advice and hope you can help because if you guys can't I don't know who can!

    I have a *very* small jewellery business (possibly I'm kidding myself and it's more of a hobby that sometimes brings in money) and I've been trying hard to get it off the ground a little more.

    My style more often than not involves turquoise or earthy stones, chunkier rings and a boho, western feel... basically the type of jewellery I love to wear.

    The thing is this- I have had numerous commissions based on my designs, but aside from one ring I've never actually sold anything NOT custom made. I'm finding this a little disheartening since I've been told my work is great and it obviously inspires people to ask for customs... But it doesn't sell.

    A friend told me I should be looking at trends and making small, low price items I can sell in bulk- such as stackers etc. The thing is, I'm happy to do this but I've never been a trend person. I couldn't, say, make a starfish stacking ring and honestly say I'm being true to myself.

    Am I being silly? Should I be looking at trends? Or should I power on and stay true?

    I'm due to drop a day at work in September to give myself more time to build my business, but I'm terrified nothing will sell and as much as I love custom work I would really like to be able to stabilise my sales.

    Long message, apologies!
    Any advice would be so appreciated.

    Thank you and have a cracking Sunday

    Nina

    Sent from my CLT-L09 using Tapatalk

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Sep 2011
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    Think about how you market instead
    www.Pearlescence.co.uk
    @pearlescenceltd
    instagram: pearlescenceltd1

  3. #3
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    Jun 2017
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    Quote Originally Posted by pearlescence View Post
    Think about how you market instead
    Yes Pearlescence, you're right there. I need to really figure my marketing out. I've just found the business and marketing topic page on here and it's great, so I'm going to spend some good time on there. Thanks!

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  4. #4
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    Being true to yourself is a happier situation. Some members in the past said they have sold their soul to run a popular business. A compromise is needed if you don't want to sleep on a park bench. Dennis.

  5. #5
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    Jun 2017
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dennis View Post
    Being true to yourself is a happier situation. Some members in the past said they have sold their soul to run a popular business. A compromise is needed if you don't want to sleep on a park bench. Dennis.
    Thanks Dennis. That's what I think. The last thing I'd want is for my love of making to dwindle. I also struggle with the meaning of 'low cost'. How low cost can handmade items be? I think this is something people don't often understand. A ring for 10-15 is what I'm told to aim for. I don't think I'd ever buy a ring at that price. Maybe I shouldn't really listen to said friend haha


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  6. #6
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    Sep 2014
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    What kind of ring could you make by hand for that price whilst paying yourself above minimum wage ?
    I personally think its incredibly hard marketing ready made items but there are several on here that manage ok so it can be done and I think your turquoise rings would be popular if you can just find the market.

  7. #7
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    I’ve never followed trends and if you get no enjoyment out of designing and making something then what’s the point.
    A trend would just be copying others and you’d be expected to be cheap which is obviously what your friend is suggesting.
    I know everyone hates FB and Instagram but it’s quite a good start to showing what you make and getting a following. I’m not sure of the point of Instagram but I’ve recently opened a page linked to my FB page. It’s hard work , you need good quality photos and it’s slow to get going but many seem to do really well from it and it is a showcase

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Nov 2017
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    Caroline i'll have to track you down on insta. Personally i love it as so many local makers and shops are on there and i like the ease of istas picture filters/editing and simple accompanying caption.
    Last edited by Sheen; 19-08-2018 at 02:32 PM.

  9. #9
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    Nov 2017
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    Hi Nina, i wouldn't go the ultra cheap angle with your jewellery it's just not worth your time. I think you need to find customers who have your taste, what sort of people are they and where can you find them? Have you tried selling at craft markets? You get a good mix of people at these. If going on instagram think about keywords: is your jewellery shabby chic? Or would it appeal to the steampunk community or goths? Follow people who make things that would compliment your jewellery and comment when you can. You'll find an audience. Also in terms of designs don't copy others but be inspired by them and spot gaps in the market. Also say you want to try stacker rings (as they are popular) could you do them in your style in a design that excites you. I think the originality or quality of your work will always have a market, Sheena
    Last edited by Sheen; 19-08-2018 at 02:31 PM.

  10. #10
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    Mar 2016
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    Quote Originally Posted by CJ57 View Post
    A trend would just be copying others and you’d be expected to be cheap...
    I totally disagree, following a trend need not mean copying others, nor equate to cheap. Nor do you need to aim for bulk, low-priced items as the OPs 'friend' suggests.

    You can follow a trend and still retain your own style and design ethics in your own interpretation of a trend and sell at a price that reflects the time and material costs and profit margin desired.

    e.g. the annual Pantone colour of the year trends for a while, and if popular remains on trend throughout the year. Rose Gold is currently a massive trend but interpreted in their own style by many different designers. Likewise the current trend for 'dainty' pendants both singularly and 'layered' is huge. If your own style could accommodate all three examples, then well-marketed you'd have a chance at a hit product. Of course, if you end up designing on on-trend item that everyone wants to buy, then it's time to bulk up your production, but for that get a production assistant onboard and you, yourself, should carry on with your designing.

    A good way to stay up to speed with trends is the weekly Trend section of BenchPeg; https://benchpeg.com/trends

    Now, I'll admit, you may find some of the trends they report on a bit weird, I do, but it's a good place to start.

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