April 09, 2013

5 Years Beaded Jewels

5 Years Beaded Jewels!!!
       Five years ago I was looking at a blank screen ....from a free web builder that I just had down loaded. People kept asking me on craft shows if I had a website. So I decided to build my own website.......without any and no experience. Surely you have heard the saying " Where a will is there is a way".

I was burned out from all the craft shows I went to as a vendor. Forty shows in 4 years might not seem a lot, but it does get tiresome after a while. So my goal in December 2007  became....to build a website where I could sell my hand crafted beaded jewelry. So I did.....had 98 visitor the first month.......and one customer....my sister in law....yeap. As you might can imagine.....I leaped for joy. I am sure everyone including my dear hubby  thought I was nuts. I was determined to make this work....and guess what I did.

In 2008 There were the Ning Networks a friend form England had told me about. I searched for networks with hand made jewelry making members. I joined several Ning networks. Not one of them still exists today, but each one of them played a crucial role in the building blocks for Beaded Jewels. I got to know some pretty great people like Stefeni. She has been my customer since 2008. She was also one of the first people I met through the Ning networks. She was the owner of several back then. In 2008 later on in the year I also created a profile on Facebook, but really did not know what it was for about another year. Yeah I know...that's how green I was behind the ears...did not know what Facebook was.... ok enough with the laughing!!!

Talk about being green and being naive. The year 2009 was also the year where I got scammed pretty bad. Believe it I was so desperate to make Beaded Jewels work that I payed $2300 to become to a company over the phone who promised me make me no 1 in google search.
NO ONE CAN MAKE THAT PROMISE. There is is however a lot you can do about your self to get there. It's a bit complicated and a bit of time consuming but it works. You find me usually on page 2 or so.....sometimes on page 1. For me that is ok.  After all I am just a Wahm....yeap a work at home mom.

Looking back now.....sigh...I was pretty naive. Through mistakes you make along the way you learn. I want to tell you about this bridal order I received.....I post a bunch picture of it so you see the work and effort that went into that piece, that was custom ordered who later refused the piece do to how much it cost. As you can see that is model # 3 after I had drawn out two other models....that was the one she wanted. Of course she wanted black net and all of of the dangles where to be Swrovski Crystals 6mm bicone in peridot, aqua and  siam. The finished piece had in the neighbor hood of 266 ~ 6mm Swarovski Crystal and it took me about 6-7 hours of work. The cost of this choker which was finished of over $365.00 plus shipping of course. I looked at this gorgeous choker for three years, before I finally took it apart. Not completely , but I took off most of the swarovski crystals and yes I cried. This is how some of us learn lessons ....very painfully....sigh.
The last picture now shows how I changed it and made it afforable.
It look like a collar now.....still very sparkly, but not to be compared to what it  how it looked before. Well this is how we learn right? No it is still not sold.......but as you can imagine it is kind of a sore point to my eyes now. I would love to sell it!!!!!!!

So now I charge a 50% down nonrefundable deposit before I start and gather needed materials for custom designs......and the ones that really want to order something designed for only them...really do not mind and hold up there end of the bargain as I hold up mine and deliver only exquisite quality in craftsmanship and design. An extra  that I started doing a couple years back, was aks the customer for FINAL APPROVAL.....meaning I send out ultra detailed picture from every possible angle of the piece I made and have the customer give me the final stamp of their approval, before I send out the payment request for the reminding bill to be paid. This system is working great...not only the customer knows exactly what she or he is getting  but it also gives me the piece of mind that my customers are 100% plus satisfied and will most likely order from me again. I also give all customers who come back for more custom made designs 10% OFF for ever, for life and yep does not matter how old you get. You might ask how i keep track of all that...well I do two things....I create a card with all the personal info, measurements etc if given, when they ordered the first time., Each new customer also gets a  folder in my Documents which gets titled something like this: Beaded Jewels Customer Teresa Shmith ( fictional in my book, just used it as an example). In the folder I put the detailed pictures of the finished order so I know exactly what they have ordered. At the end of the year I send out coupons to those customers who spend the most on custom made designs or ordered form the website http://www.beadedjewels.biz  The coupons last year for this elite group of  faithful customers was 20%OFF

So these five years were filled with with all kinds of  hurdles  as well as learning experiences.....I hope I did not bore you with some of the details....if I did tough!!!!
I sure hope you will check out my website and my many different styles in handmade beaded woven wire, wire coiled wrapped  and silver smithed jewelry.
I hope you did enjoy my article and share in my accomplishments.

Best Regards
Lexi Butler
Beaded Jewels 2008-2013

Link to the piece that yes is for sale go here please http://beadedjewels.biz/extravagant_3.html  If Interested in item #BC_613 Black Netted Ckoker send me an inquiry to http://www.beadedjewels.biz/contact.php and make me an acceptable offer!!!!

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