Tag Archives: Jessica Rose

Planning in Your Jewellery Business: FREE Download ‘My Jewellery Business Planner’ with Jessica Rose

Hooray! We’re entering week 2 of our FREE ‘starting your jewellery business’ online course all about helping you to start your own successful jewellery business. It was wonderful to have so many of you join us last week, over 600 budding jewellers and we can’t wait to get going on this weeks content with you. If you haven’t signed up yet there’s still time to join us! Just register here
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Week 2 is all about creating a plan for your business. We know you are busy and it’s Christmas so we don’t expect you to write a 20-page document! In the course, Jessica shares a simple 1-page plan for mapping out the key activities and areas of operation in your jewellery business. It is perfect for getting a snapshot of your business now and to identify any gaps to work on in the year ahead. 
‘If you fail to plan, you are planning to fail’ – Benjamin Franklin
– We agree with him!
A business plan is crucial to help you plan your focus and actions in your business to ensure you are moving forward strategically rather than being caught up in busy-work. It helps identify the difference between the important and the urgent.
The course features video lessons, downloadable notes AND we’ll be providing support and answering your questions in our facebook group so do join us there now if you haven’t already!
As an added bonus Jessica Rose will be answering your jewellery business questions on a facebook live video each week. The next facebook live will be on Wednesday 13th December at 12 noon GMT so do add your questions here.
You can also watch her answering questions on last week’s facebook live here
The course includes our jewellery business planner, a tool adapted especially for use for this type of business. The planning tool is available for you to download for free here in the course notes.
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Watch the video for week 2 where Jess talks you through all the sections of the planner and the questions you need to ask yourself.
Any questions for Jessica? Ask them here now so she can answer them live for you on Wednesday at 12 noon GMT on our Jewellery School Online facebook page. And don’t worry if you can’t watch live, the video will be available to watch on facebook after the recording.
Happy planning and have a great week!

Join us for a FREE online course – start your jewellery business

Are you planning to start a jewellery business?

Or perhaps you already have one and would like a boost?

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We’d love you to join us for a FREE three-week online course to help you work through what you need to do to get started. Join Jessica Rose, our founding Director and award-winning jewellery entrepreneur, for our online course starting this week and get access to 3 video interactive lessons, downloadable notes PLUS we’ll be providing support and answering your questions in our facebook group with weekly facebook live sessions.

This is a great opportunity to gain tons of free support for your jewellery business, connect with other jewellers, gain inspiration for your next year in business and grow.

To get started with the course visit: https://learn.jewelleryschoolonline.com/p/starting-a-jewellery-business

Jessica will be going live on our facebook group page each week on Wednesday at 12 noon GMT to answer your questions and give more insight into the week’s lesson. To take part sign up to the community facebook page at:

https://www.facebook.com/groups/jewelleryschoolonline/ and meet the 1,000+ other budding jewellers in our community.

 

What is covered in the course?

This online course is scheduled for three weeks. Each week has video content to get you thinking about different aspects of starting a jewellery business

 

Week 1 – Start A Jewellery Business Top Tips (week commencing Mon 4th December 2017)

Jess’ top tips for starting a jewellery business. These tips help guide you to start preparing and thinking about your business and any areas you may need to work on or schedule to complete for your business.

 

Week 2 – My Jewellery Business Plan Model (week commencing Mon 11th December 2017)

Jess will guide you through an amazing business planning tool ‘My Jewellery Business Model’. Looking at your vision, customers, pricing, collections, suppliers and much more from a strategy viewpoint (sounds very formal but is super fun!).  You can download your handy ‘Business Start-up Guide’ and work alongside to create a model for your dream handmade jewellery business.

 

Week 3 – Building a Brand for Your Jewellery Business (week commencing Mon 18th December 2017)

Now, more than ever, it is important to stand out as a recognisable jewellery brand. Jess covers the 5 key elements of your brand, how to create or develop them in your business with tasks and actionable steps to refine your core values and the visual elements of your brand. With the aim that the people who want to buy from you, are not only aware of your brand, but they covet and desire what you have to offer! Sounds great!

 

We will be working through the course with you over the coming weeks, sign up on the link below (click enrol now) to get started. You can watch the videos whenever is convenient for you and as many times as you like!

https://learn.jewelleryschoolonline.com/p/starting-a-jewellery-business

 

And for any instagram lovers out there, we will also be providing daily inspirations and support through the jewellery school online instagram page at @JewellerySchoolOnline https://www.instagram.com/jewelleryschoolonline/

 

We look forward to working with you on your jewellery business over the coming three weeks!

Who needs beads? The (w)hole of civilisation

It is National Beading Week so we have been taking a look at how beads have been used in contemporary jewellery designs

A bead can be anything threadable. The first pieces of jewellery were beads made from shells, while the trading of beads was one of the first forms of currency leading to the development of language. Oh yeah and they are pretty too.

It’s worth keeping your beady eye on the graduates spilling out of this year’s degree shows. They are fresh and dynamic and completely varied. Some of the bright young things of Central Saint Martins have favoured using beads this year and are creating some great examples of the potential for striking results that can be achieved. Rosanna Batt uses delicate threads of shimmering beads to trace the outlines of the body to create garments that challenge traditional ideas of function in clothing and jewellery as decoration.

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Rosanna Batt

Bead counting toys have been a traditional sight in the doctor or dentist waiting room aiding the development of fine motor skills in children. Also used as the inspiration for Dani Lane’s Abacus Maximus rings, a delight for any kidult stuck in a dull meeting.

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Dani Lane

Teri Howes takes simple bead threading to another level with her knitted and crochet fine jewellery pieces.

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Terri Howes

The tiny beads on Just Rocks and Coral’s yellow waterfall necklace work as a team to make for a bold statement and a cool cascade of colour for the summer.

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Just rocks and coral

Words can’t explain the staggering potential of the humble concept of these items of adornment, but it may be thanks to them that we can use language to attempt it.

Take a look at this video by our founder/director Jessica Rose explaining a simple and effective way of making a quartz crystal bead necklace that can be used for any type of bead.

Inspired? Take a look at our beading classes run at our London studios and our free online course with Jewellery School Online

 

 

 

Jewellery making on TV

TV shopping channels are now featuring jewellery making and supplies. Tutor Anna Campbell turns on the TV (for research purposes, of course!) to see what’s happening

 

I have to admit, I am a fan of TV shopping! It seems many others also enjoy it but keep it a guilty secret but the need to feel guilty about it seems to be changing! There are a few channels that feature jewellery making tutorials and supplies and it is great to see how widespread the hobby and business of jewellery making has become on the shopping channels. I have had a look at the TV channels I can see and the jewellery supplies they offer. Just a note, I only have freeview so there may be more you can recommend to me!

 

london-jewellery-school-blog-jewellery-maker-tvJewellery Maker is perhaps the most well-known in the industry as it focusses solely on the craft of making jewellery. Previously owned by the Genuine Gemstone Company, that also runs Gems TV, Jewellery Maker sells a wide range of materials and tools including precious and semi-precious stone cabochons and beads, other beads including Swarovski, tools and materials. Always informative, they feature guest designers who show how the materials and tools can be used. LJS tutor Hayley Kruger is a guest designer with Jewellery Maker so watch out for her shows!

 

 

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Create and Craft TV feature all types of papercraft, arts and crafts including jewellery making. The London Jewellery School has a partnership with Create and Craft TV. In 2016 and 2017 LJS founder Jessica Rose and metal clay tutor Anna Campbell did shows demoing silver clay projects on the channel. Viewers were able to buy a kit of metal clay tools, which also included access to the Jewellery School Online course silver clay charms and torch fired stone setting techniques. 

Create and Craft have also partnered with Beads Direct so there are a lot of great beading and wirework products as well as other resources.

 

 

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Hochanda is the ‘home of crafts hobbies and arts’ and covers a large range of crafting and art including card making, stamping, patchwork, sewing, applique and much more. They feature a small range of jewellery making supplies.

 

What am I missing? Which channels do you like to watch? Let us know what you like to watch via the comments below

 

Mini-Adventures in Selling Jewellery on Etsy with Jessica Rose

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Our Founder, Jessica Rose, has sold jewellery for many years in boutiques and galleries, but recently set up her first Etsy Shop and started selling online in the name of research.  And today she shares with you everything she has learned about successfully selling on Etsy! 

 

Having sold my jewellery on and off for the past 9 years, alongside setting up the London Jewellery School, Jewellery School Online and various other, yes you guessed it, jewellery related ventures! I decided to have a go at setting up my own Etsy shop.  One thing I love about running a jewellery business is there are always new things to try, new things to learn about and new mini-adventures to go on. Here is what I have learnt so far from my mini-Etsy adventure. To anyone who has an Etsy shop or is considering starting one – I highly recommend it, there is so much opportunity there, once you know how to access it…

I started out by quizzing everyone I know at the jewellery school about the pros and cons of selling on Etsy and learnt that it is really important to have a strong and extensive collection…

Tip 1: Aim for 100 items! 

sell-jewellery-on-etsy-jessica-rose-copyJessica Rose Jewellery Etsy Shop

Ok, maybe not all in one go, but a few colleagues mentioned that their shop really increased in activity once they had passed this magic 100 mark.  I would not have guessed that.  Traditionally when selling jewellery, less is more and we don’t want to over-crowd our stalls or fill our collections up with ‘jumble-sale approach’ pieces.  However it does make sense that more-is-more from a ‘being seen’ point-of-view in the Etsy Search Engine.  The more items we have, the more pages we have and the more chance of showing up in the Etsy search results. So build your collections as you go.

The next lesson shared with me, which is one I’m always banging on about anyway, is of course, the importance of killer images.

Tip 2: Images that make customers fall in love! 

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Photo credit: Karen Young Jewellery 

If you want some examples of this, look no further than our very own Karen Young’s lovely etsy page. It is not enough anymore to just have beautiful jewellery on a white background (although of course that is nice). We need ‘lifestyle’ pictures, showing customers how the jewellery looks in relation to other things, be it a nice piece of wood, shells, teacups, vintage books, a pretty flower, some gemstones – the world is your oyster.  The important thing is to show different angles and, through your images, speak to the customer about how this jewellery will make them feel inside.

What about the process of setting up an Etsy shop? – Well its pretty straight forward but I would dedicate some time to it.  A day or two for photography and writing descriptions and a day or two to upload everything, depending on how large your collection is. Make sure you have at least one item, photographed and ready to go as you are creating your shop. You can’t activate your shop without an active listing.

And Etsy offer a lot of help!  They are actually running a special email series to help you get your shop up and running called the Etsy Resolution which starts on 27th Jan – you can find out more here.

That brings us on to product descriptions…

Tip 3: Informative, engaging and compelling product descriptions

Whether you are new to Etsy/ selling online or have done it for many years, we can always do with improving our descriptions. Of course they need to be informative – to include all the info a customer needs to buy, exact materials, lengths, any variations such as different gemstones, gold or silver, is it plated, filled or solid?  The more you can say the better. Alongside the information don’t forget your brands tone-of-voice. Let your personality come across.

Tip 4: The people want to know about YOU Yup, it took me a while when starting my business to work this one out, that anyone buying handmade wants to know about the designer behind the work, the entrepreneur behind the business. And why not? You are awesome after all….

Jokes aside, it is important to fill out all of the sections in your etsy shop with a little about you, your values, why you are selling your jewellery, your process, what materials you work with etc…

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All of that is well and good but what about some practical action we can take to improve sales in our etsy shop today? 

Tip 5: Be sure to post regularly;

  • On Facebook, and it may be a good idea to ‘boost’ posts relating to selling your jewellery on Etsy so that a wider audience can see it. Or set up a Facebook ad for yourself in Ads Manager.
  • Post on Etsy itself in the ‘Updates section’ it helps communicate with your customers and helps your shop to look up-to-date and active.
  • Also you can post on your blog if you have one, start one if you don’t; or select your favourite social platforms, such as instagram, twitter, pinterest… the list goes on.

And another practical tip for those more technically minded…

Tip 6: Match your Tags, Titles and Materials 

SEO, search engine optimisation, is key on Etsy to get your items seen. We can help that along a bit by;

  1. Listing items regularly (each time you list an item it goes towards the top of the results)
  2. Using all the characters in your product titles, include keywords in there
  3. Match your tags to the titles, include all those words in the ‘tag’ section too
  4. And be as detailed as you can on the ‘materials’ section. List every material used to make that piece

Phew! That’s quite a lot to get through. Like anything that is worthwhile, in business (and in life) building a strong sales base and following on Etsy takes time. And effort. No uploading a bunch of items and then leaving it and hoping for the best (that is how we get disheartened!). But what Etsy has shown to me over the past few weeks of experimenting, is that it can work, and it can work really well. If you are prepared to put the time and effort in. Which of course we are ☺

On to my final tip (for now)

Tip 7: Quality is essential 

It goes without saying, but building your skills as a jeweller and business owner so that you are confident in the quality of your work, your processes and your business knowledge is essential. None of us are perfect but we usually want our jewellery to be, so investing in your training and your skills, in my opinion, is always a worthwhile investment. Make sure each piece you send out is of the highest quality and is something you would love to receive.

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If you would like to learn more about setting up and running your own successful, profitable and sustainable jewellery business then it’s not too late to join me for our brand new comprehensive 8-week online intensive course: The Jewellery Business Bootcamp, find out more and enrol for a spot here > (http://learn.jewelleryschoolonline.com/p/the-jewellery-business-bootcamp

We start this Friday 27th January and I would love to have you join me and our lovely community of budding and growing jewellers. Everyone is welcome. 

All that is left to say is best of luck for anyone trying out Etsy for the first time, I’m with ya! And for all the Etsy old-timers, we would love to hear more of your knowledge and wisdom, so do share a comment or two below about what works for you.

Until next time, Happy Making

Jessica x

 

Author: Jessica Rose

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Special Business Week offers

Our founder, Jessica Rose is hosting a FREE webinar masterclass on 26th January at 6.30pm on Boosting your Online Sales.  Grab your spot on the webinar here.

And don’t forget our special offers on business courses for this week only we are offering 25% off business day classes held here at the School using the code 23011701.  This code can only be used over the phone so please call on 020 3176 0546 to book your place.   This discount is only available on bookings made during Jewellery Business Week 21-27 January 2016 inclusive.

Click here for more details of all the business courses included in this offer.

If you’d like to be kept informed of our jewellery business courses, free articles and offers subscribe to our jewellery business list

FREE Jewellery Making Workshop on 23rd & 24th July @Southbank Centre from 12-4pm!

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Fancy doing a spot of making this weekend?  We would love to you join our founder, Jessica Rose, for a FREE jewellery making workshop as part of Fashion Undressed Festival at the Southbank Centre on 23rd and 24th July from 12-4pm!

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You will learn how to make a funky perspex charm bracelet which is yours to keep and there will be loads of other workshops celebrating style and creativity – from the street to the catwalk, along with art, culture and performance.  It is sure to be a great day out!

For more information about the event  click here!

We hope to see you there!

A Letter to Jewellers worried about how Britain Leaving the EU will affect Business…

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Many jewellers and crafters running their own handmade jewellery businesses (and any small business owner for that matter) may be understandably worried about how the recent result that Britain will be leaving the EU, may impact their jewellery business.

Professional jeweller’s recent article talks about 90% of designer businesses voting remain http://www.professionaljeweller.com/bfc-survey-reveals-90-of-designer-businesses-against-brexit/ which is no surprise given the business impacts.

We can’t change what has happened, whether we want to or not, but there are some practical steps we can take to protect and improve our businesses (babies!) for the time-being…

 

  1. The pound is low – so it is a great time to be selling overseas 

Americans, Europe and most places in the world can buy your jewellery at a significant discount to them (without you charging any less at the moment) due to exchange rates and the low value of the pound.

To capitalise on this, why not use this time to promote your business more overseas? Target customers in other countries who fit your target audience, Facebook and Social Media Ads can be a great way to reach a specific demographic looking at their interests and location. If they love handmade jewellery and live overseas, now may be the time to reach out to them with a great offer?

In order for this to work you need to keep an eye on the market as it changes. If you go to http://www.xe.com/currency/gbp-british-pound you can see verified up-to-date information on what the exchange rate is each day.

 

  1. Don’t panic!

We don’t know what is going to happen, and that can be scary! However you feel about the vote, for your business it is important that you keep calm and carry on as usual.  There will always be ups and downs in business and now is the time to look at the things you can control (e.g. your spending, your prices, your marketing, your brand messages) and those that you can’t (e.g. the global market, the economy, the results of the referendum).

 

  1. Utilise the materials you have in stock.

I know most jewellers don’t keep a huge amount of stock, especially when we are making to order. As the cost of raw materials may have increased for those of us in the UK (and this is likely to be a temporary reaction to uncertainty) it is a great time to use up any old materials, beads, silver, gold or scrap you have in the workshop. Why? Because you brought these before the pound value dropped so effectively they were cheaper. Of course we will all have to buy new materials and accept price increases for that too which leads me on to my next point…

 

  1. We are all in the same boat, let’s help each other out 🙂

Small businesses in Britain are struggling a bit at the moment, mainly out of fear and then the reality of changes. So let’s come together and help each other out. Don’t forget we are all in the same boat, if prices of goods increase that will be the same across the board, so remember whatever you are going through, you are not alone.

Let’s help each other out today – let us know your top tip for getting through any difficult times in business (can be anything) in the comments below. Whatever it is may really help someone else struggling.

 

  1. Be open in your business and flexible to changes

This one applies in any circumstance – the businesses most open minded and adaptable to change are the ones that survive through difficulties and change. If a certain line isn’t working for you, look at alternatives. If you feel that selling your work is going to be tough with cost increases, can you work with more affordable materials? If sales are low, what can you do in your marketing to reach your customers? How can you diversify your income? There is always a way and you can do it, keep an open mind and give it some thought as to how you can adapt as the next few years play out.

 

  1. Remember your overarching vision – why you are doing this! 

Remember why you started your business in the first place, or if you are just starting out, remember why you want to do this. Think of your vision for your business, what you want it to be in 3 years, 5 years, 10 years time. We are in this for the long-run. Whatever business you are in or whatever job you are in, no one has 100% security.  Most jewellers choose this line of work out of a love and a passion for it, for design, for the materials, for the freedom of working for yourself, for the look on the customers face when you had over a bespoke piece, knowing that you are helping to make others feel happy, loved and appreciated in the world.

 

  1. Don’t give up!

There is a lot of mixed messages and fear around at the moment which is completely understandable. But businesses face ups and downs. This just happens. Since starting the London Jewellery School we have faced at least 10 business crises that threatened our future over the past 7-8 years but you keep going, work hard and get through them. There will still be jewellery in the future and someones got to make it, so why not make that person you.

I don’t know if times will be hard or if they will be good, but I do know that there are things we can all do to make them better, in our businesses. I mentioned I would love to hear any of your top positive tips on how you plan to deal with changes in your business, even if it’s as simple as ‘Keep Calm and Carry On’.

Thinking of you all and wishing you the best of success and longevity in your jewellery businesses for this year and many more to come.

 

Jessica x

 

Jessica Rose, Founder, London Jewellery School & Jewellery School Online

Twitter: @jessicaroseldn

Join Jessica for her FREE 3-Part Jewellery Business Video Series!

London Jewellery School Online_FREE Start a Jewellery Business 3 part video course out now!

Happy Bank Holiday weekend! Hooray!

And the best news is that it’s not too late to join Jessica Rose for her FREE 3-part video series – ‘Start a Jewellery Business’!!!

What better way to spend the long weekend than joining Jessica to learn all about building the business and future of your dreams. Doing something that you love for a living takes time and hard work but it is 100% worth it and completely possible. 

Which is why we have put together a FREE video series for you to develop your skills in ‘the business side’ of making jewellery. Wether you are a complete beginner or seasoned jeweller this course and complimentary downloadable Jewellery Start-Up Guide’ will give you and your business the ‘Umph’ you need to move to the next level.

Be prepared for motivation, tips, planning tools, and actionable resources to get to moving with your jewellery business straight away.

What’s more… you have nothing to loose, this course is completely FREE and available for you to access anytime, anywhere 24/7 starting this Weekend.

Sound good? If you haven’t already, you can enrol here!

The first part of the course course is already live and you will be able to access it straight away.

So what does the course cover I hear you ask… 

Great question! It is a three week course designed to get you started in pushing your business to the next level and to build a creative career that you love. 

Week 1: Jessica’s Top Tips for Building a Jewellery Business: This lesson is full of essential top tips to get you set for success! We will be thinking about the foundations and building blocks to starting or growing a solid jewellery business and get you ready to start building your jewellery business model in Video 2!

Week 2: Business Planning for Jewellers: Jessica will guide you though an amazing business planning tool ‘The Jewellery Business Model’. Looking at; your vision, customers, pricing, collections, suppliers and much more from a strategy viewpoint (sounds very formal but is super fun!). Download your handy Business Start-up Guide’ and work along with her to create a model for your dream handmade jewellery business.

Week 3: Building a Brand for Your Jewellery Business: It’s all about branding your jewellery and your business looking at your ethos, your copy and your visuals so that the people who want to buy from you, are not only aware of your brand, but they covet and desire what you have to offer! 

Over the course of the 3 weeks you will learn all the basics about how to build a profitable and productive handmade jewellery business!

Click on the link below to enroll now…

http://learn.jewelleryschoolonline.com/courses/starting-a-jewellery-business

You will have access to video 1, and the handy ‘Jewellery Business Start-up Guide’ to work along-side Jessica in building your DREAM Jewellery Business.

And that’s not all – Following the video series Jessica will be inviting you to a FREE live webinar on one of the hottest topics – Pricing your Jewellery for Profit! So stay signed up to hear details about that when it drops!

Have a wonderful weekend and hope to see you on the course!

Hooray! We are 7!

London Jewellery School Blog - 7th Birthday
WOW!  It has been 7 years since the London Jewellery School first opened its doors – how time flies when you are having fun!   Things have changed a lot since we first opened but one thing hasn’t – our fantastic customers!  You never cease to amaze us with the wonderful jewellery your create both during our classes and afterwards.  We thank you from the bottom of our hearts for joining us on this amazing journey and your continued support!

Our founder, Jessica Rose, started the London Jewellery School in 2009 aged 21 with only one class a month held in a community hall in South London, and to date we have welcomed over 12,000 students and taught over 3,300 classes.

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So we thought it apt to find out from Jessica how she feels about the last 7 years – what her biggest highlights of the last 7 years have been and what her hopes are for the School going forwards!

So Jessica – congratulations on the School’s birthday!  How do you feel 7 years on?

Whoop whoop!  Happy Birthday to everyone at LJS!  Yes it feels amazing to have reached 7 years.   When we first started out back in a small community space in Dulwich (South London), I could never have dreamed of how much we could all achieve together. It is hugely rewarding to see your own business sustain and grow over that period of time and what is even more rewarding are the stories that come out of the Jewellery School.  So many talented students who learn and develop their skills with us and go on to set up their own jewellery businesses and develop and grow as a result of their time here. There is something very special about being part of that.  It has also been great to see the team of staff and tutors grow over the years and many students have gone on to teach or work here.  It’s like a hub of jewellery making fun and creativity. What more could you ask for in your life than that?

What are you top 3 proudest moments from the last 7 years?

Gosh there are so many, but we were delighted to win 6 awards for the London Jewellery School in one year, including the professional jeweller hot 100, HP Smart Business Awards and the NatWest Everywoman Business Award!  That was an incredible feeling. Not only to see the business grow, but to get that external recognition from so many established institutions.   It really gave the school and the jewellery training industry as a whole extra credibility and recognition.

Meeting the prime minster, writing my first book, demonstrating jewellery-making live on TV, speaking on Sky news, teaching Robert Patterson (the BBC Business Editor) how to make a cocktail ring!  So many highlights to be proud of, and it has all been such fun too!

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But, the proudest moments always come from students and seeing what they are able to achieve and do each and every day. My favourite events of the year are always the Diploma exhibitions – to see the quality of work that students have worked so hard on go up and up, and to hear about their businesses and plans for the future. Hopefully we can help many more people to do what they love in the future too.

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What would you say the most important thing(s) you have learned in the last 7 years?

Never give up!  There will always be tough times and ups and downs in business and in live but if you keep going amazing things can happen.

I have also learned that it is not all about me!  As soon as I feel like everything is on my shoulders and that the school is about me, things get difficult. I have the most amazing team and have been so lucky with the staff and tutors that have come and go and been part of our journey so far. And like we keep saying it may sound cheesy but it really is all about the students. When I focus on what I can do to make their lives better, to improve their experience and to reach more people who want to be part of what we are about then the rest all falls into place.

And finally that it is possible. Many people told me when I started out that it was a nice idea but would never make any money, that it would be unsustainable or unrealistic. Luckily I didn’t listen and did it all anyway. With business, it’s always possible. It is just a case of when, where and how.

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What has been the biggest challenge?  

Property! Being in London property has been a definite challenge for us and it didn’t help that I knew nothing about it before starting and renting our first places. We have been unlucky with property and the staff team will be the first to tell you we have moved 5 times in 7 years (moving a jewellery school is no easy task!) but we have been lucky enough to always find what we need just in time and we have made it through.

You have already achieved so much in the last 7 years but what is next for the School?

So much! As well as continuing with our popular one-day, evening and certification classes, we are building the online school at www.jewelleryschoolonline.com

With our mission to bring jewellery making to the world and to help over 1 million people to learn the fun and creativity of jewellery making, we have built an online school.  Here we offer some of our most popular courses through video based learning, e-workbooks, podcasts, webinars and supportive community groups. It’s great! If you haven’t already you should join us and sign up to some of our free courses at http://learn.jewelleryschoolonline.com/

We are also developing partnerships with Create and Craft TV channel and our tool partners to bring you more exciting jewellery making tools and kits. Continuing to develop and build our jewellery diplomas programme to train budding jewellers to build their own businesses and work in the industry.

I would love in the coming years for us to do more to help jewellery designers run and sustain profitable jewellery businesses. There is so much we have to share!

I can’t wait to see what the next 7 years bring, but whatever happens, I promise it will be sparkly!

Thanks Jess!  We just can’t wait to see what amazing things happen in the next 7 years!

Jessica Rose takes us behind the scenes of her first jewellery making book

London Jewellery School founder Jessica Rose‘s first jewellery making book, Bead and Wire Fashion Jewelry , is about to hit the shops, so we decided to ask her about how it came about and what it is like to produce a book.

 

beads wire fashion jewelry

Tell us a little about the book and where the idea came from

Absolutely. The book is called Bead and Wire Fashion Jewelry and is all about making big, bold and beautiful statement pieces of jewellery using a range of techniques and easy to source materials that you can easily do from home.

The idea came to me when I was learning to make my own bead and wire based jewellery. I loved going on to Amazon and finding books to teach me techniques for using wire, pliers, beads and mixed materials. I stated to apply those techniques to making my own style of statement fashion jewellery – pieces that combined different materials like fabrics, buttons, charms, etc, with traditional beads and wire wrapping.

When I was teaching classes at London Jewellery School, students often asked for a book that taught my style of jewellery making and designing in. I would usually give them a list of bead, wire, fashion jewellery and mixed media books along with suggested magazines to look at. This made me think that it would be great to have one book that combined all of these with guidance on the design process too. The seed was sown and I added “write a fashion jewellery making book” to my bucket list.

 

Bead and Wire Fashion Jewellery

Jessica’s book is full of stunning statement pieces and plenty of advice on creating your own variations and designs

Why did you decide to do it?

It is something that I have wanted to do for a while, I think there is something very special about being able to hold a book that you have written in your hand.

I also knew the process would force me to take some time out from behind the desk and spreadsheets running LJS and give me time to get making and be creative again – I loved designing all the pieces.

Mostly I decided to do it as I could see a clear need and gap in the market for this kind of book. It is the book I would have loved to have brought when I started making jewellery and with all the 1000s of students we have coming to LJS each year, I wanted to be able to offer something that I thought would help them on their jewellery making journey.

 

bead wire fashion jewelry

All the projects have detailed step by step instructions with beautiful clear pictures

 

Was writing the book what you expected – how long did it take you to come up with the ideas?

The process was a little different to what I had expected, but then again, having never written a book before I didn’t really know what to expect.

Once all the contracts were signed there were quite tight timescales that publishers needed me to work to. They have lots to think about in terms of layout, imagery and promoting it once the writing is finished so you have a close working relationship with them over when and how it all needs to be provided.

Coming up with ideas was the really fun part. I already had quite a clear picture in my mind of what I wanted for the book. I think is really important to get your concept clear in your mind from the offset so that the projects have a common theme and there is continuity. I choose to do chapters covering; rings, necklaces, bracelets and earrings.

When I was designing the main questions I would ask myself are; is it a statement piece? Do the colours look gorgeous together? And, most importantly, would I love to wear it? If the answer was yes to all three I knew I was on the right track.

BEAD AND WIRE FASHION JEWELLERY

The book features a range of necklaces, earrings, bracelets and rings such as this clever three stone wire wrapped piece

 

What is involved in writing/publishing a book – what surprised you about the process?

Firstly I wrote a proposal for the book idea and submitted it to the publishers. I didn’t hear back for a few months so assumed that they weren’t interested or that it wasn’t the right time. I realised later that it can take months (and even years) for a proposal to be looked at, considered and researched at the publishers end. I heard back nearly a year later and they provisionally wanted me to write the book. Yippee!

After getting over my excitement I wrote a few sample projects for them to see before they offered me a contract to write the full book.

After contracts were signed, which I carefully read and made sure I was happy with upfront, I met with some of the publishing team and agreed the initial structure, chapters and timescale for when they needed all the content.

The writing process took around eight months and we liaised backwards and forwards from time to time on projects, text and images for the book. On the whole I got on with it and just started making the pieces, taking the pictures and working my through the book.

It got a little more stressful toward the end of the process as I am awful at sticking to deadlines, and in book publishing it is crucial that you do fit in with the timings because a whole team of people work on getting the book layouts done and ready once all of your content is in. With a little help from the LJS team and the team at the Guild of Master Craftsmen we got it all done and dusted and that was that.

It was a lot of work but a relatively simple and straightforward process. Like most things it is just about getting on and doing it.

 

bead wire jewelry fashion

For each project Jessica shares her design process through a mood board

What would you advise other people to think about if they were thinking of publishing a book or a collection of projects?

I think the main question to ask yourself before starting any book or project is; who are your target readers? Who are you putting it together for and do they want to make what you are offering? These are effectively your customers (or readers) and every book needs an audience.

I spotted a gap in the market for a fashion-focused bead and wire book because this type of book hasn’t been done before and I saw a demand at the London Jewellery School from students (and myself), who would like a book like this.

If you are considering writing a jewellery making or craft-based book (which is a great thing to do), then you need to consider what you can offer and what will be different about your book compared to all the rest on the market. Are there enough people who would be interested in buying it and how will you reach them? The publishers will do a lot of the promotion work, however, they will only take on a book as a project if they believe they will sell enough copies.

Also think about the amount of time you need to commit. It can take up to two years to produce a book from idea to bookshelf and for about six to nine months of that time you may need to work on it nearly full-time. It is a big commitment, so make sure you can accommodate it before agreeing terms with publishers.

Other than that the main focus is on coming up with lovely, unique projects that can inspire budding jewellers or crafters. If you can put something together that can help others to learn, be creative and start or develop a rewarding hobby or career then I think that’s a great thing to be able to do. I know that was my focus when putting the pages of the book together and I hope it can do just that.

bead wire fashion jewellery

The book offers advice on choosing colours and adapting projects to fit your style

If you would like a copy, the book is out in early September 2014 and available to pre-order from Amazon now here.

Jessica would be very happy to sign any copies and would love to know what you think of it and see pictures of your versions of the projects inside – feel free to get in touch anytime at Jessica@londonjewelleryschool.co.uk