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 Post subject: jewelry designs
PostPosted: Sat Jun 11, 2016 11:14 am 
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As I sit here this am on a rainy day I flipped on the tube. Checking out the half a doz gem/jewelry channels Im struck by the size of things. The items they are pushing are huge! Who wears this stuff? The earrings would probably rip my ears off, the pendants give me a stiff neck, the rings would make brass knuckles dainty!
So I wonder why the trend to upsize everything? Is there some limiting factor in design that forces mfg to go big or go home? Is it the attempt to pack as many gems as possible onto the platforms available?
I swear some of the rings although beautiful, looked about the size of the umbrella from a drink I had last night. Accent stones large enough to be centerpieces in their own right. Maybe people have exponentially larger features and require larger jewelry now?
What is it that are the deciding factors in jewelry now.
The available settings
the available cut gems
mass manufacturing.
I assume we are the people that design, build and repair. What are your thoughts on why the industry is at this point?

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 Post subject: Re: jewelry designs
PostPosted: Sat Jun 11, 2016 5:06 pm 
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I prefer the more dainty-looking designs but of course I don't wear them. My missus like just the sort of jewellery you describe Dan, big and chunky. I think it must just be a trend, though perhaps body parts are getting bigger with all the hormones in poultry and pork. I have a mate who is a manufacturing jeweller, he told me that a woman came into his shop and asked him to make a ring for a particular piece of her anatomy - he swears he never saw the body part in question: "I just made the piece, I gave her the piece, she gave me the money". But I won't go down the road of exponentially bigger body bits here :D

Mass manufacturing might have some influence but I think it's probably just a trend. Some styles would be timeless.


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 Post subject: Re: jewelry designs
PostPosted: Sat Jun 11, 2016 10:35 pm 
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I get the fun flashy cosmetic jewelry, but I was looking at things that were 10k and up. I guess price really doesnt matter its just a different client. What I guess I have against the huge styles is lack of any practicality. They get hung up on everything. Snag on clothing, scrape against furniture, if they dont get marred up they certainly scratch other things. Give Auntie a hug with that big broach and you might get your throat cut.

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 Post subject: Re: jewelry designs
PostPosted: Sun Jun 12, 2016 4:09 pm 
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My missus won't wear her chunkier jewellery to work because it would only get caught on stuff like you mention. My father once had his finger half-stripped of skin when he jumped off a low scaffold on a construction job and the edge of the ring caught some projection as his hand slid down the steel. And a man's wedding ring is about the most unobtrusive piece of bling you can get.

But maybe practicality and trendiness don't have to go together? In ancient China, wealthy trendsetters would show off that they were loaded by wearing jackets with sleeves about foot longer than their actual arms - ie, we're so rich that we can afford to have someone else spoon feed us and wipe our backsides. Completely impractical but super-fashionable. If I were a tailor to the rich back then, I'd make them whatever they wanted, knowing that some of them would probably get those ridiculous sleeves caught in a set of reigns or something and have their arms ripped off. Yeah, those huge chunky pieces are just asking for trouble but I guess the customer is always right.


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 Post subject: Re: jewelry designs
PostPosted: Tue Jun 14, 2016 10:27 am 
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Personally, I like to make jewellery that is practical, although I notice a trend for larger pieces. Necklaces, I think, can be made larger, but most other things would just look trashy.


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 Post subject: Re: jewelry designs
PostPosted: Thu Jun 16, 2016 12:16 am 
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So we are among the conservative group and feel practical application holds precedence over trend. Still we make what the customer wants. Are we so willing to make a $ that we make what the uninformed customer wants rather than educate them on issues of impracticality and modify their opinions to a more practical useful item that won't create a issue shortly an have them cuss at us for a thoughtless design?

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 Post subject: Re: jewelry designs
PostPosted: Thu Jun 16, 2016 12:17 am 
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Where are your principals ? When do you stand up to what you know to be a problem and say no.?

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 Post subject: Re: jewelry designs
PostPosted: Thu Jun 16, 2016 1:58 am 
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What? It's jewelry. Jewelry isn't worn for practicality.

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 Post subject: Re: jewelry designs
PostPosted: Thu Jun 16, 2016 4:00 am 
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Not necessarily, think of cuff links (incidentally, I do well with cuff links for Bar Mitzvah gifts, it's the only item of personal adornment the frum lad can wear on the Sabbath, likewise gold scarf pins for the girls). I have made lots of items out of silver and gold that one wouldn't expect (diaper pins a particular favourite), it just takes a bit of imagination.


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 Post subject: Re: jewelry designs
PostPosted: Thu Jun 16, 2016 12:05 pm 
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Ok I'll give you that one it's not worn for practical reasons. But how many times have you been scratched by a larger ring setting? How many times have you checked the dictionary for that expletive when the new nylons were instantly destroyed? The sweater snagged. How about trying to hook the necklace? Aarg those tiny clasps!! Why? Who thinks those are practical.
So to me practical jewelry in my mind are those pieces that don't give you those kinds of issues.

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 Post subject: Re: jewelry designs
PostPosted: Thu Jun 16, 2016 4:08 pm 
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Jewellery that snags is evidence of poor make. Claws should all be gone over with a grain tool then polished on a fine mop. Likewise all corners and sharp edges. I keep a piece of silk handy and use it to check for raised parts that will snag.
As for tiny hooks and snaps they can be a problem, but the Germans have (as usual) come up with an answer - magnetic clasps. These are neodymium magnets in a silver or gold case (as required). Not cheap, but the customer only needs to try one to be sold. I buy (and sell) a lot.


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 Post subject: Re: jewelry designs
PostPosted: Thu Jun 16, 2016 4:23 pm 
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Maybe you could just put a disclaimer in the window of the shop warning that bulky jewellery can get caught up on stuff so don't come crying to you if it happens. I haven't yet seen a pair of scissors on the store shelf labelled "Caution! Do not run with these!" but I'll bet it's coming :)


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 Post subject: Re: jewelry designs
PostPosted: Fri Jun 17, 2016 7:32 am 
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Or one could just make it properly in the first place, after all, what is the point of hand made jewellery if it isn't better than the mass produced variety?
That said, I will admit that I once had a customer who seemed to delight in smashing up jewellery I made for her. She never cribbed about the repair bill, but regularly brought things back, often in pieces. A heartbreaking woman to deal with. Eventually I had to pass on the profit and send her elsewhere.


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 Post subject: Re: jewelry designs
PostPosted: Fri Jun 17, 2016 4:09 pm 
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What the hell was she doing while wearing her bling? Cagefighting? Football?


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 Post subject: Re: jewelry designs
PostPosted: Fri Jun 17, 2016 4:46 pm 
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She denied doing anything rough, but when she brought back a necklace of agates, threaded on 1 mm steel wire (breaking strain about 90 lb) and broken, I had to go through things carefully with her.


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