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Defining my style? Is that possible?

June 4, 2014 , In: Beadwork, General, Inspiration
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I have been trying to “grow” my business.  I love making jewelry.  I was playing around with my ETSY shop and while I was there I wanted to update the Welcome message with attempting to define my style.  WOW I have no set style.

I get my inspiration from the beads.  Artbeads of all shapes and sizes.  Seed bead colors and shapes and of course what sparks the blend of the two.  

Here are two totally different pieces that make it impossible for me to define it.

https://www.etsy.com/listing/186556076/denim-blossom-necklace?ref=shop_home_active_4

https://www.etsy.com/listing/129452494/gold-dust-beadwoven-necklace-with?ref=shop_home_active_7

Both are amazing in their own right but so different in style.  Fun and funky or sleek and simple?  I was planning on adding these next ones to the shop as I have been told I do need to trim down my jewelry box a bit but I was so stumped my dilemma I couldn’t seem to focus on the individual listing.

See what I mean?  There is just no rhyme or reason to it!
Do you have that problem?  Is it really a problem?  Your thoughts are so welcome!!!

Kristen

Kristen Stevens

Kristen Stevens has always been a crafter of sorts.  Cross stitch, quilting, quilling, knitting, and since 2009 totally addicted to seed beads.  Then the discovery of art beads added to the addiction.  She has been complimented on her unique approach to blend colors, shapes and inspiration from the art beads and nature. She has also been writing her own tutorials. 
  1. Reply

    I think for many beaders our style is eclectic and we go in the direction of where the beads take us. When I look at these pieces the words romantic and vintage come to mind for some and earthy and maybe Bohemian for the others. They are all beautiful

  2. Reply

    They make complete sense to me. You design to complement the art bead focal.

    As someone who is mixed media – I worry about the style question too – metal, ceramic, polymer, found object, gems, wire, seed beads… I am all over the place. But I think my style usually is evident in my color palette, my content, the intention behind a piece…

    • Reply

      That is a very good point. It doesn't have to be a "defined" style if the inspiration comes from all over.

  3. It's definitely the beads, that's your 'unifying theme' – all your jewellery has it and that what defines it – beads. And in a way that's pretty liberating, as seen by your work, as you have such a wide range of beads to be inspired by. Most of my work is in silver and because of that I tend to worry if I make anything in copper, or with beads, and it can put me off trying new things like polymer clay…but I guess if you look hard enough you can find something in common. I'll bear that in mind next time I look to experiment!

  4. Reply

    Don't box yourself in with labels! :). Perhaps you're an explorer with an eclectic style that's inspired by the beads. Looking at the photos posted on today's blog, I see a definite preference for harmonious palettes. Perhaps that would be another descriptor for your art.

  5. Reply

    I agree the style is termed eclectic with a range from sleek and stylish to fun and funky. You are a complementary beader, complementing the style of the focal with your beads and beautifully too.

  6. Reply

    I think you are a lot like me. You go where your beads take you. Your jewelry is lovely!

  7. Reply

    Your pieces look like there is a style. I have the problem of style. My polymer clay work is all over, I love some many techniques, I want to use them all.

  8. Reply

    There is so a rhyme and reason to your work lovely Kristen! Your work is the showcase that displays these gorgeous art beads—like a painter puts who puts so much time into choosing just the right frame for his work. And your beading is a work of art itself… no, there is no problem at all!

    For your shop, you can easily give it a theme with photography. You work with practically all colors, so going with a white backdrop like you've already done is perfect—you can easily use white balance in a photo editing program to make them all match as closely as possible—I know from my own shop photography, that white is not the same one photo shoot to the next! Try to capture some artistic angles of your work and zoom in on the focals using Etsy's photo cropper for your listing photos and you'll be set to go! 🙂

  9. Reply

    My comments below are not intended to be self-centered / instead to explore this problem by talking about my own work, instead of trying to comment on yours. Hopefully some of my ideas will make sense for you and will be helpful.
    I'm like you – all over the map with colors, stitches, centerpiece styles, wire or metal vs beads … you name it. I seldom make a second piece which looks similar to an earlier piece. So my work always looks like a collection of totally unrelated pieces.
    I've decided to group my work into "themes." I've tried creating artsy phrases for the themes but abandoned this as too artificial.
    now I group my work by theme so that each piece has a set of companions. Sometimes the theme seems to be color-based. Sometimes it is technique-based (a group of freeform peyote pieces, for example). Having a "group" allows me to set price points within that group so that the pieces which are most valuable have nearby comparison pieces.
    I need to re-do my artfire shop, and have been pushing ideas around in the back of my mind for quite a while. no simple solutions have come to mind. The most obvious groupings – necklaces, earrings, etc – don't split the work into the different "themes" I tend to use. On the other hand, starting with say, three themes, then having subcategories of earrings necklaces etc under each theme gets waaaay too complicated for a website.
    I was fascinated by one jewelry site – the artist grouped only by color. you'd see a wild range of styles and types of jewelry (earrings necklaces etc) under each color. It seemed to work for her – she had lots of sales and good feedback.
    Whatever you do, don't shoehorn yourself into a single box. Keep being multi-faceted and enjoy being creative.

  10. Reply

    I think one's style is a broader, more amorphous thing than the materials, colors, techniques or configurations we use. For example, I like to use new materials and learn new techniques but I think my style is still recognizable. I feel that way about your work too, Kristen. I think I would recognize it anywhere. It has a certain elegance and lushness, and your photographs are distinctive too. I think our style is sort of like our voice–no matter what song we sing, no matter what genre, even no matter the mood we bring to it, our voice is still very distinctive and recognizable. I wouldn't worry about the details, I would do whatever your interests and desire tell you to do–wild, organic, sleek, urban, whatever. If you're following your own gut, it will always be your style no matter the mood, and will be recognizable to others. You can't help but infuse anything you do with your own soul.

  11. Reply

    I know what you mean. I was trying to define my style the other day and all I could come up with eclectic. It really all depends on what the beads need to allow them to look their best.

  12. Reply

    Beautiful! Glad I came across your blog. I think too they are romantic and vintage looking.

    I am loving the beads, and so much creativity from person to person is wonderful to see.

    Connie Limon
    Carmilita's Handmade Jewelry
    Blog: http://carmilitashandmadejewelry.wordpress.com
    Website: https://carmilitas-handmade-jewelry.myshopify.com
    Etsy: https://carmilitaearrings.etsy.com

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