Skip to main content

Folksy Jewellery ~ Dare To Be Different!

Selling anything handmade online can be challenging with the handmade jewellery sector being particularly competitive. Take a look on Folksy and Etsy and you will see hundreds and thousands of jewellery shops. What a choice! From the traditional to the quirky, how do all these jewellery-makers attract sales? Getting the basics right obviously helps - well-made products, good quality materials and well presented photographs are all very important to getting those sales. But how do you make YOUR jewellery standout from the crowd? Being a jewellery designer myself that's a question I'd really like to know the answer to!

I asked three Folksy sellers who make jewellery that's a bit different from the "norm" what made them decide to step away from the more traditional types of jewellery.

Fee of Niche Handmade has been crafting for as long as she can remember and likes to try her hand at everything at least once! Fee uses vintage illustrations and turns them into pendants and earrings. I asked Fee what made her decide to make her style of jewellery  "I have always had a huge love of vintage illustrations and an equally huge collection of them, and I was desperate to find a way that they could be translated from the page into an object that could actually be worn and enjoyed. I wanted to make a product that was different enough to get attention but still practical enough to function as a piece of wearable art."

Where do you get your ideas/inspiration?
The Victorian era is an endless source of inspiration for me. I’m fascinated by it – the fashions, the art, the architecture, the way of life. I also like to keep an eye on what’s popular in the fashion world and my eldest daughter keeps me up to date with what's trending amongst her friends!

What are your plans jewellery-wise for the future?
I’m in the process of developing a method for printing vintage illustrations on fabric. I love the crossover of textiles and jewellery and I’d like to go down that route with my work. I’d also like to do more themed collections like my Alice in Wonderland collection, which has proved very popular.

Becky of Folksy shop Chiyo makes bright and beautiful jewellery featuring vintage plastic flowers and beads.
"I've always loved anything bright, bold and different. I went to art college for 3 years and always made unusual pieces using a variety of different media, though didn't really show this in my jewellery at first. I thought I should tone it down a bit as I was scared/nervous that no one would like my style, but as my confidence in my pieces grew and more people seemed to like them I have slowly made my pieces bigger, bolder and a lot louder. I love having a style thats different from the more traditional, its me, I've always been an individual and hopefully it shows in my jewellery. "

Where do you get your ideas/inspiration?
I get inspiration from everywhere really, out walking, looking at beautiful flowers, even when I'm trying to get to sleep, I end up tossing and turning just wanting to go downstairs and get my beads out. (I know that feeling!)

What are your plans jewellery-wise for the future?
I was asked to do a feature in Make Jewellery magazine. I made them a matching necklace, bracelet and ring, not sure exactly when its out but hopefully soon, very exciting. I've also started to make some hair bands and brooches in the same style which will hopefully be listed soon and I've been enquiring about getting my jewellery into some local shops. I'd also like to do a craft fair, there's a regular crafts market by me that I'm going to give a try.

Folksy shop Black Cats Whiskers is owned by Claire who makes jewellery in her spare time featuring buttons, polymer clay and Lego! When she started making jewellery it was of the more traditional type and Claire found the competition at craft fairs to be fierce. However, she noticed her more unusual watches and charm bracelet watches did fairly well. "I felt I needed to find more of an edge on the competition. Looking online one day I stumbled across a maker of clay beads in sweetie shapes which I ordered (and loved) and at the next craft fairs the bracelets and earrings I had made were so popular I couldn't help but decide to branch into the 'fun jewellery' direction. Now when I go to craft fairs I never have to worry because I know no matter how many jewellery sellers are there I have something a bit different to offer and its working for me (so far)."

Where do you get your ideas/inspiration?
I get my ideas from lots of places, i'm always on the look out for something a bit different and I also get lots of ideas from talking to people and special requests. The other week I was asked if I could make button hairslides and earrings so I gave it a go and I love how they turned out. If I see things I like I'm not scared to ask people to tailor things for me, for example Lilley on Folksy has made me jelly babies and love hearts with no holes so I could turn them into cufflinks. I can't say I've seen my button watches on sale anywhere else but some of the things I make are not original but I put my own spin on the design. I found some absolutely stunning butterflies and flower beads the other month that I have never seen anywhere else before and I love to sit picking a selection of lovely coloured beads to go with them on my charm bracelets.

What are your plans jewellery-wise for the future?
In terms of making - I plan to expand the range I offer. I'm already starting to make rings, hairslides and bangles that I was not making 2 months ago. I also intend to keep listening to my customers and learning what they would like to see me make - afterall you can only be successful when you make things that people are willing to buy. In terms of selling I'm starting to supply a new gift shop from 1 March and I'm looking for other opportunites for shops. I've also got lots of craft fairs planned for this year and will be continuing to keep my Folksy shop stocked up. I'll also be looking for every avenue I can to continue to promote what I'm doing. I don't think I'm going to have time for that diet ;-)

Thank you Fee, Becky and Claire. Pop over to their Folksy shops for jewellery with a difference ♥


  1. It looks great! Thank you soo much for including me :) xx

  2. Great article, its great to hear other peoples ideas! Kx

  3. Claire makes fab cards too. Thank you without your post I wouldn't have found them. :o)


Post a Comment

Your comments and questions are very welcome!
If you would prefer to contact me directly please use the contact form on my "get in touch" page.

Popular posts from this blog

Etching Silver Using Nail Art Stamps

So my love/hate relationship with etching sterling silver continues. I've tried a few times now and always end up with different results most of them not that great to be honest. I've tried connecting the silver and a piece of copper to a 9v battery and also heating the ferric nitrate. Sometimes the results are good sometimes not so good. I currently have an etched piece of silver sheet waiting to be reticulated and rid it of the mess that is the etched "pattern". 
I now know that using stamps and Stayz On ink just doesn't work with silver - the time needed to etch using ferric nitrate is much longer than etching copper and the ink starts to wear away after about an hour. This results in the pattern being patchy as the resist is eaten away and the silver ends up quite lumpy and course looking. I have yet to try using pnp paper. I don't know why but it all seems a bit of a faff to do. I don't have a laser printer so would need to find somewhere or someone…

Embossing Metal With My Sizzix Bigshot

I must admit up until a few weeks ago I was vaguely familiar with the name Sizzix but as to what you actually did with a "Sizzix" I was completely in the dark! That was until I stumbled across a video from Vintaj showing how you could use their embossing folders with a Bigshot to create designs on metal ("metal" - my favourite word after chocolate!)
I was really impressed and itching to have a go, I just needed a Bigshot........ I waited a few weeks then when the urge to possess one overcame me I went out debit card at the ready..............and the shop had sold out! So I trundled off to The Range on the off chance and came home clutching my own surprisingly heavy pink and black wonder machine. It sat on the dining room table for a couple of days while I waited for the embossing folders I'd ordered online to arrive then the time came to start playing!

I started with some pre-cut 24g copper hearts and the Wildflower Vines and the Butterfly Swirls Deco Embossin…

Rolling Mill Textures On Metal

I had another play with my rolling mill last week using some of the texture sheets from Etsy shop Rolling Mill Resource. I used some sterling silver and copper sheet and soon discovered it's best to get organized before you start!

I cut the sheet to size and worked out which design was going on which piece of metal. I also tried a feather but more on that later. Most of the sheet I used was 20g/0.8mm with one piece of 18g/1.0mm and one of 22g/0.6mm.
I've read that you should do a dead pass of the metal through the rolling mill with the gap the same size as the metal and texturing item. I'm not sure what this is supposed to achieve but I don't bother doing it. Judging the correct size of gap between the rollers is a trial and error thing that you discover by setting the gap then starting to roll the metal through. If there's too much resistance you make the gap bigger until there's just enough resistance to roll the metal through without giving yourself a herni…