Monday, January 16, 2012

Rock N’ Roll is here to stay

A few months ago, Tony and I were invited to Sammy’s coming of age, Bar Mitzvah celebration. I was excited to attend, but I had a slight problem that weighed about 7 pounds (but really, who knows? Read 30 random things about me #1) and my favorite little black dress didn’t fit flatter my new curvaceous figure. Not willing to buy a new frock, (I will lose the weight, I will lose the weight, I will lose the weight!) I dragged out my “fat” dress, a BCBG black, gray and coral-pink ensemble that would do, if I could find a spectacular bracelet that would take the dress from ordinary to extraordinary.

I tried, but I couldn’t find anything in the right colors that came even close to making my vision come alive. So, I headed to Michaels, 40% off coupon in hand, determined to make my own statement bracelet. About $50 and a few hours later, my Rock N’ Roll Bracelet was born. Accented with pink skulls, a few crosses and tons of funky beads I loved the bracelet and was even glad that I had gained the weight and had been unable to fit into my black dress. Well, not totally true, but it’s as good a rationalization for gaining weight as I ever heard.

The day after the party I had to work an event, and decided to show off wear my Rock N’ Roll Bracelet. Sweater sleeves rolled up, so that no one could miss it, a gal that I knew stopped by to chat. It was rather amazing that she just happened to notice my bracelet, isn’t it? When I bragged told her that I had made it she asked if she could try it on. I was beyond stoked.

 Admiring it on her wrist, she asked, “Do you sell your bracelets?”

In that moment my mind went into fast drive. OMG, this could be my Ah Ha moment. Forget about scrapping, I’m a bracelet designer. Get ready Anthropology cause here I come…this is where I was rudely interrupted by her question.

“How much?”

 The dreaded question that makes me weak in the knees. I NEVER know how much to charge for my crafts. She looked at me, waiting for a response and I went into panic mode. I could feel sweat on my brow as I tried to figure out how much I should tell her. Too little and I’ll be losing money, but too much, and she won’t buy my bracelet and there goes my dreams of becoming the next great jewelry designer. What to do?

I stumbled along, “Well, the beads were expensive…Those skulls cost me $3.00 each and I have three of them on the bracelet…” I trailed off into oblivion, feeling a bit nauseous.

“I can see that.” She replied, clearly beginning to lose patience with me.

 About to lose the sale I blurted out, “$80.00?” and held my breath.

Her instant reply, “Great, I’ll take two!!”

The rest is, shall we say, history. No, I’m not the next great jewelry designer and I will not be appearing on either HSN or QVS anytime soon, but I have sold more bracelets, even did a custom one. The downside of all my success is that I have added bead hoarding collecting to my resume. Do you make and sell jewelry? How do you determine how much to charge for your wares?


  1. They are really lovely bracelets you should be proud of the talents you have....and i love your stories by the way thanks again for making me smile xxx have a great day maxine keller, u.k.

  2. These are gorgeous - Love them. How can you not hoard beads? that is what they are made for - isn't it?? I am so jealous of Michaels and that 40% off coupon - it sounds amazing. Another fabulous blog!
    xx Michelle

  3. Wow you a Jack of all crafts, talented in writing, scrapbooking and jewelry, wow Ellen they are your story too.....tfs

  4. wow Ellen, those are great looking bracelets. I love making them too, but i usually just make them for my mom and sister and me, never to sell.

  5. I heard to multiply your costs by 4 to determine your price...that way you double your money and compensate yourself for time and effort. good luck to you!