Beau Dangles

Handcrafted Jewelry — Designed to be Different


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Easy Earring Display

I’m teaching a new class on earring making and needed a way to display samples so that prospective students could see firsthand what they might make.

I tried several ideas but none of them showed the earrings off to advantage — they looked crammed together and uninviting.

Styrofoam to the rescue!

I have several pieces of styrofoam that I use under display cloth at my show booth. Also in my stash of why-did-I-ever-buy-these things were some pins I’d bought years ago and never used.

I covered the styrofoam with a large sheet of white paper. I did a neat, taped down fold to finish it off so that I could pin earring samples to all 4 sides.

Sytrofoam block

The tricky part was getting the display to stand upright without falling over. I thought about making a base around the foam but didn’t have time.

Instead I made foldover loops of masking tape, stuck them on the bottom of the foam and then stuck that into the bottom of a pretty glass plate. I filled the plate with dried beans to add more support and to finish off the display.

This turned out to be a quick and easy display and it didn’t cost me anything (always a nice benefit).

While I’ve used it to show off individual earrings, it could be used to display earring pairs. Although I put most of my earrings on individual cards, I also have some discounted and sale earrings that sit in a small basket. This upright display would show them all at a glance.

Since these forms are easy to make you could create a nice tiered effect by adding 1 or 2 more of different heights. When earrings sell and you want to add another pair, use the same pinholes to keep it looking neat.


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Choosing a Backdrop for Your Jewelry

Photographing jewelry is an art. Great photographs can sell the work even though the buyer has never seen the real piece.

I’ve taken a lot of blah shots so taking better photos is one of my goals.

One aspect I’ve begun paying more attention to is the background. Too often I choose whatever is handy or what I’ve used in the past. But not all pieces work well with the same backdrop.

Here’s an example. The earrings in these photos are identical, only the background has changed. Which do you prefer?

On wood  (Sold)

On seashell  (Sold)

The lefthand photo isn’t bad but it’s too cool and monochromatic for my taste. It looks posed. If the earrings don’t look natural in the photo, would someone still buy them?

In the righthand photo the wood adds warmth and colour. It also creates a casual feel, saying these are something you could wear to the farmers’ market, a rodeo or a get-together with pals.

Since we don’t always meet our buyers face to face, photos must do much of the selling for us. I’m aiming to take better pictures in the future. 🙂


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Sundre Library Display

Well today was a first — I hung my jewelry on a wall. In the Sundre Library to be exact. The display area was started several years ago and has showcased some beautiful local art. As far as I know this is the first time jewelry has been front & centre.

It took me quite awhile to figure out how to display the pieces. Putting them on display busts didn’t seem like a good idea. I finally decided to put them into the same display cases I use for transporting pieces to and from a show. However, the cases are too large for one piece, but too small for two.  What to do?

I eventually settled on one piece and one photo — since the pieces are laid flat, the photo of each one on a bust gives an idea of how it might look when it’s worn.

Well-known local landscape artist Virginia Wilson was there to help me set up the display. I was going to stagger the pieces on the wall but she suggested setting them at eye level in a straight line. Looks great, thanks Virginia!