A lot of people are making the wrong assumptions about many jewelry supplies, especially gold filled beads. If you choose to get them for your jewelry making, you need to know what they truly are so you can properly market them to the right people in the right way. If you are into jewelry making, it is also crucial that you get educated about other beads and jewelry making supplies so that you can craft the best jewelry and market it the right way
Before we dive into the list of misconceptions, let us talk a little about some basic facts first. Legally, gold-filled items should have at least 5% of gold. This percentage will be identified using the gold alloy’s karat-age. Many gold-filled items in the market today are either 12kt or 14kt.
#1 – Inability to Cast
There are a lot of people who are getting confused about the ability of a gold-filled item to be cast. To be clear, remember that gold-filled items do not have the ability to be cast. This is a limitation that many people who are using gold filled items for jewelry making have to deal with. The products that are attached to it should be manufactured from the tube, sheet, or gold filled wire.
#2 – Gold-Filled Solder
There is no exact reason why the term “gold-filled solder” came to be. In actuality, this does not really exist. Normally, to get the illusion that a solder is gold-filled, color matching is done. The solder joint and the surface metal are color-matched by a 14kt gold solder.
Moreover, soldering a gold-filled item should not be done without a special tool operated by a person who underwent a special training. In most cases, gold-filled soldering needs a laser welder to make the joints as precise as possible.
#3 – Gold-Filled vs. Gold
A lot of jewelry makers who are creating jewelry using gold filled beads call them “gold”. This should not really be done and is illegal. If something is called gold, it means that the item is a very solid alloy that contains a high gold content. Gold-filled items are not like this.
As much as possible, do not use the term “gold” for pieces that are actually made with gold-filled items. If you make this a habit, you could get yourself into legal issues.
#4 – Gold-Filled vs. Gold Plate
Gold-filled items should not be confused with gold plating. A gold plate is a very thin layer of gold spread on a base made of brass. Because it is so thin, it does not really contribute to the weight of the whole item. Compared to gold filled items, gold plates wear off easier and quicker. Gold plates also cannot withstand extreme heat or temperature.
On the other hand, gold-filled items have 5% gold in it. Because it has more amount of gold, it adds up to the total weight of the product. Additionally, gold-filled items and findings can be more durable and reliable, providing protection from tarnishing and wearing of the main product.
If you are looking for a more affordable but acceptable quality alternative for solid gold, gold filled beads and items can be your best bet. They offer the best features that make up the characteristics of solid gold while maintaining the price at mid-level.
One industry that some people might be skeptical to dive into is fashion jewelry making. It is an industry that requires creativity. But, what many people are not aware of is that you do not need to have a high degree of skill in working with beads and jewelry making supplies to start a jewelry making business.
Just like any other niche, jewelry making business can be started even if you are more geared toward operations and technicalities. If you do a search, you will find that there are plenty of jewelry businesses out there. Just in the United States, the industry yields over $70 billion in sales annually.
To help you get started, we are sharing a few tips. We will be discussing some basics of starting a jewelry making business from the planning to the marketing.
Before you start a jewelry marketing business, it is important that you lay all your cards on the table. You must identify your goal. Part of it is determining what kind of jewelry you will be making so that you can source your beading supplies in bulk from the right resource.
There are generally two angles you can consider. You can either deal in fashion jewelry or fine jewelry. The general difference between these two angles is in the price point. Fine jewelry is more expensive because they are made with expensive precious gems and metals. Fashion jewelry is cheaper because they can be made from inexpensive materials such as plastic, synthetic gems, and gold filled beads and findings. The investment required for a fine jewelry business is considerably higher than that required for a fashion jewelry business.
Inspiration and Design
This is where things get more serious. As we have said, there are already many people who are into the jewelry making business. This only leads you to one choice: finding a unique and interesting design of your products that will make it stand out among the sea of fashion and fine jewelry that are already existing in the market.
The Production stage is one where you will actually get to work on creating your products using items like Swarovksi beads and crystals. Depending on the designs you have planned, you will need some basic tools and supplies like pliers, wire-cutter, glue and cleaners, etc. you may want to pick up a few books on jewelry making and watch some good YouTube tutorials. Practice at home and perfect your method and designs before deciding to sell.
Now that you already have your products and you are ready to sell them, it is time to find avenues and places where you can actually sell them. If you are a small startup business, it would be a good idea to create an online store. The costs of buying a website, an e-commerce platform, and paying a web developer are a lot less than having to lease a physical store and all the operational expenses that come with it.
The use of metals for jewelry has existed for as long as the start of human civilization. Metals in jewelry were already used in ancient Greek, Roman, and Egyptian civilization. Since then, jewelry making has become so popular that there are many less expensive alternatives for precious metals right now like gold filled beads.
While there are a lot of different metals known to us, not all of them can be used to make jewelry. Among the most precious metals that are used in crafting jewelry are gold, platinum, and silver. They have a huge economic value and they are considered more valuable than most other metals.
Any kind of metals used in jewelry making that is not one of the three mentioned above is categorized as non-precious metals. While gold filled beads are cheaper, they are not really behind in terms of quality. In some cases, to get the best of both precious and non-precious metal features, they are mixed and termed as an alloy.
If you are studying about the different metals you can use for jewelry making while planning your designs, take a look at this list of metals and their major characteristics.
#1 – Platinum
Compared to other metals, platinum would be the rarest and the most expensive one. It even has a higher preciousness rate compared to gold. Platinum looks very similar to silver and it is mainly characterized by its heavy weight. The most common and popular use of platinum in terms of jewelry is for wedding or engagement rings, paired with diamonds.
#2 – Silver
One thing that makes silver preferred by most jewelry makers is that it can be soft and easy to work with when it is pure. It makes it easier when silver is mixed with copper so it is more pliable. There are many kinds of silver metals accepted as jewelry making materials like fine silver, nickel silver, and sterling silver. Sterling silver beads are very common in jewelry making.
#3 – Copper
Copper is characterized by its reddish brown color. Unlike precious metals, copper is often used as a base for gold filled beads and findings. Usually, copper is oxidized and it becomes like a green patina. The oxidized copper is called an antiqued copper plate and it is popular as a material used for making fashion jewelry.
#4 – Stainless Steel
Stainless steel would be the most popular and widely used material in the craft of jewelry making. It is more industrial-looking with an appearance that can be very similar to silver. It is resistant to scratches, but it may contain some nickel that can cause allergies in some people.
#5 – Gold
Among the metals mentioned here, gold is the best metal for making jewelry. Gold has always been considered beautiful. To make gold easy to work with, it is mixed with other high-quality metals like copper or zinc. Most fashion jewelry is made from gold filled beads and findings, a cheaper alternative containing around 5% of pure gold.