Turning Your Hollow Fab Projects into a Cohesive Jewelry Line
Hopefully you guys are really feeling like, Megan stop talking, I wanna go get to work, I have all of these ideas. So I just kinda wanna talk for a couple of minutes as we head out, about getting you to think about maybe what you can do with this, and also if you're thinking that you want to turn this into a cohesive jewelry line. If you're like, Megan I love this and I wanna use this as part of my production line, I'm thinking about some ideas that you can do. So again, thinking about just what other types of jewelry can be made using hollow fabrication techniques. They're really is no limit. So the same kinds of box construction that we used for the hollow fab ring, can be used to make parts that become pendants or broaches, or even earrings. I mean, I would probably go with a slightly thinner wall, you know not as deep this way. But you could use this to make decent-sized earrings that have the three dimensional feel, without a ton of weight. So thinking about how you can apply thes...
e skills, and really play with them and take them to the next level. And you know we didn't really talk about this thus far in any of our other classes. We've always talked about this idea of how do you take one concept and make it across lots of different types of jewelry. But there's another way to think about our jewelry line, which is maybe you specialize in one kind of product, right? So maybe you are in love with this hollow fab ring technique, and maybe even some variations on it. And what you decide is that you wanna be a person who is really known for rings, right? You wanna be known for making all kinds of fun and funky rings, using these hollow fab techniques. And that's your defining element. I personally tend to be the kind of person who's like, I'm gonna make all the different things. But you don't have to be that person. You can decide, that's it, rings are for me. The other thing, of course, is to go back to our paper models, right? So you can use paper models to explore all your ideas. I'm going to come back to some of our cool little metal things. We use paper models, we start to think about, this becomes a pendant, maybe it's a little smaller it becomes an earring. Let's stick a pin back on that, it's a pretty fabulous broach too. So think about, play with those paper models, play with lots of ideas. Kind of explore from there. The other thing when you're thinking about a jewelry line, is just to consider variations in size and materials. So if I have, this is a thing that I'm really excited about, or actually I think a good one is our broach that we were playing with. So if I take this guy out. So, I have this in kind of this one size, this one material. But suddenly let's say I did this as a broach in brass, in silver, in a cool patinaed copper. So suddenly I've got three different ideas. Then if I just change the scale a little bit, if I make it smaller it becomes a pretty great post earring. Maybe I do a rectangle, so that becomes a nice long earring. So even just by thinking about varying the size and the scale and the material, you can suddenly go from one thing to a pretty expansive jewelry line, right? The other thing I recommend if you're thinking that this is a really exciting direction for you, is to think about varying the amount of labor in your line to fit different price points. So as we saw, something like this hollow fab ring, or this locket, there's definitely some labor time involved in these. So if you're really pricing to actually be profitable, you're gonna have to account for all that labor, and that means this is not going to be the cheapest ring. Now, I guarantee you if you make a lot of these, you're gonna be able to do it much faster than we did in this demo where I'm talking to all of you guys, right? But there's still some labor involved here. So if you're thinking about putting this into a line, think about how you can vary things like something like this that takes longer, with maybe a concept like this, which is a pretty quick thing to make. There are little fold forms or things like that. So think about varying the amount of labor so that you can hit different price points in your line, and it's gonna be easier to sell. Of course, you're always probably gonna sell more of these than these, but you never know. It's important to kind of vary that. So before we wrap up, I wanna make sure a. We don't have any more questions. But I would love our in-studio audience to share what you're most excited to go home and try.
And we're good on questions over here
So I think we'll hear from our in-studio audience.
Who wants to go first? One of you. Tracy, do it.
I'm still stuck on the chunky rings.
I'm going to get over my fear of the torch and go home and try those.
Yes, you were actually saying at lunch, I think I'm gonna go get one of those butane torches and give it a whirl. It only took us four classes to get her there. (audience laughing) I love it.
I think I'm very interested in trying to make a locket, because I think the lockets are really neat. I never thought it would be, I guess, simpler than I thought it would be? Like I thought it would be a lot more complicated than that.
Yeah, it really doesn't have to be.
By you showing us, it's like oh, okay, that makes sense.
Okay, I have to say that I've gotten over the sautering thing.
Yes two, that's two down!
I feel like practice makes perfect and after watching you today, we did so much sautering, that I could try it.
Yay, I can't wait.
So I was really excited about the chunky rings when I got here. But then when you were making the locket I was thinking, I would love to make a small metal box.
Oh yeah. Yeah, and you can absolutely do all of that as well. So you know one of the things that we did not talk about was how to do a nice tension-fit lid, but there is something where you can actually take a box form, you can cut it in half, you can add a lip into it, and then boom, a nice little tension-fit lid. So there's a whole, there's lots to explore. For anyone who's really excited about that idea, there's a great book called, I believe it's called The Metalsmith's Book of Boxes and Lockets. It's by Tim McCreight. If you're like so excited about this and I wanna do more, it's a really great book. I find that it's one of those, like many metalsmithing books, if you're just trying to teach yourselves the techniques from scratch, it's a little bit tricky. But now that you've seen all of this, everything in there's gonna make a lot more sense. If you guys can't find it, I will tweet that out later for everyone to look at. I just want to remind everyone, speaking of Twitter and sharing, I wanna see what you guys make. So whether you're watching this class now live, or you're watching it in the future, I wanna see what you guys do, and what this class inspires you to do. So pretty please, share your designs. I'm at @meganauman @creativelive both on Instagram and Twitter. You can use the hashtag #CLHollowFab and of course you can always upload all your projects to the student gallery for this class, because we really, really wanna see how you guys put this into action. For me, the fun part, I mean this is fun, I'm not gonna lie, I had a lot of fun today with you guys, we geeked out a lot. But for me the truly fun part, is seeing how you guys take these skills and make them your own. So I cannot wait to see what you guys make with all of this.
Megan Auman is a designer, metalsmith, educator, and entrepreneur who has built a multi-faceted business around her passion for great design and sustainable business. Her eponymous jewelry line is sold in stores across the US and online. Her designs have been featured in Design Sponge, Better Homes and Gardens, Cooking Light, and more. In 2009, Megan founded Designing an MBA to help designers and makers develop their business skills. Since then, she has created a number of successful e-courses, including Marketing for Makers, Wholesale Academy, and Do/Teach. She is a frequent speaker on pricing, wholesale, and business thinking for creatives.
After watching Megan solder in this class, I felt like it was something I could take on. There's a lot of soldering in this class! But there's also a lot you can do without soldering that's covered. I have a better understanding of how jewelry is made from this class. I'm looking at things that I own and thinking that I now know how to recreate them!
I liked this course, Megan explains a lot of things about techniques and materials and it's simple follow all the operations to create these types of rings. I think I'd purchase other classes of her.