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Artisan vs. Handmade Jewelry: Is there really a difference?

Artisan vs. Handmade Jewelry: Is there really a difference?

When searching for pieces of jewelry to add to your collection, it should not only be a representation of taste but also your personality. Finding those pieces to add to your chest should take about as much effort as finding the right dress to wear to a cocktail party or finding the perfect handbag. Any jewelry aficionado understands each piece that is added to their collection has a story of origin. They are also able to tell you what and why that particular piece is so special to them. All jewelry is not created equally. With that in mind, your jewelry should be a clear and unique representation of YOU.
September 09, 2019 by SWCreations Jewelry
The Best Handmade Earrings to Give

The Best Handmade Earrings to Give

If you are looking for a special gift for someone special, get them some our handmade earrings! Whether you are seeking to purchase a gift for a special friend, a lover, or a relative, they will love our handcrafted earrings! Give them something as special and unique as themselves. 
December 16, 2018 by SWCreations Jewelry
czech glass history

The History of Czech Glass Beads

Czech glass beads are certainly one of the most beautiful and sought after styles of beads, as they feature unique styles, patterns, and hues simply not found in any other types of beads. The history of Czech glass beads is actually as rich as the beauty of the beads themselves. Find out more about the captivating history of Czech glass beads here:

Early History

Glass beads were being crafted in Bohemia, which is the present day Czech republic, as early as 250 B.C. By the 900’s (A.D.) handcrafted glass beads were being put inside of some tombs. And, in the 1200’s, several glass factories, that were sometimes used to make beads for rosaries, were opened as locals began moving into the northern mountains of the area.

October 17, 2018 by SWCreations Jewelry
Discover the True Beauty of Handcrafted Jewelry

Discover the True Beauty of Handcrafted Jewelry

Every woman loves to wear beautiful jewelry. We place a lot of significance on it. Diamonds are thought of as a symbol of love. Rubies are a symbol of passion or energy and garnet is a symbol of friendship or affection. Those same types of sentiments can be linked with beaded jewelry as well and it may hold even more significance since a lot of it is handmade. These beaded creations are one-of-a-kind treasures that every woman will be happy to wear. Are you ready to discover the true beauty of handcrafted jewelry?
September 25, 2018 by SWCreations Jewelry
Handmade Jewelry: Past, Present, and Future

Handmade Jewelry: Past, Present, and Future

Handmade jewelry has been a part of the fashion world since the earliest of civilizations. Ancient Egyptians are notably known for jewelry made of fine gemstones and precious metals, such as gold and silver. Mummies of past reigning pharaohs have reportedly been found adorned with exquisite handmade jewelry, along with other amulets that were believed to assist the dead as they crossed over to the other side.
August 25, 2018 by SWCreations Jewelry
Latest Fall Jewelry Color Trends

Latest Fall Jewelry Color Trends

The fall season is just around the corner and we can expect cooler weather and shorter days. The lush green leaves on trees will begin to shift into shades of yellow, orange, and red shades. Gardens hues will change into fall flowers that thrive in cooler temperatures like the orange chrysanthemums and purple pansies. Worldwide color authority Pantone® recently released its choices for the fall color trend report.

The new fall Pantone colors are Russet Orange, Crocus Petal, Valiant Poppy, Ultra Violet, Ceylon Yellow, Martini Olive, Quetzal Green, Nebulas Blue, Limelight, and Red Pear. Check out these new fabulous top color picks for this next season. 

August 04, 2018 by SWCreations Jewelry
Match Your Personality with Handmade Jewelry

Match Your Personality with Handmade Jewelry

Jewelry is an expression of your personality. Big and bold, calm and quiet, sophisticated, urbanite, country girl... Which of these describe your unique personality? If you're shopping at a store or local craft fair you can probably find a piece of jewelry that sort of gets you and your uniqueness. But if you want jewelry that really showcases your personality, a piece of custom handcrafted jewelry is a unique and totally original way to do just that.

If you have a sophisticated yet bold personality, a large piece of jewelry featuring Alexandrite may be the way to go. This rare gemstone changes its colors depending on the lighting. 

July 29, 2018 by SWCreations Jewelry

Tips for Buying Handmade Jewelry

In an outcry against the monotony of mass production, the trend toward buying local, small batch and handmade is heating up. Handmade jewelry is no exception. Not only is a handmade necklace or bracelet a one of a kind piece that highlights your individual style, but the quality of the item is bound to be superb to those produced by the thousands in obscure and possibly questionable factories abroad.

tips for buying beaded jewelryBut buyer beware, all handmade jewelry is not created equal. Below, you’ll find the SWCreations guide to buying beautiful handmade jewelry that is also of highest quality.

1. We’ve all experienced that terrible moment when a piece of jewelry breaks, leaving you down on your knees searching for beads scattered across the floor. This unfortunate scenario may be avoided if the jewelry you choose is made with strong wire. As you can see, the wire used to string beads on your jewelry is very important. SWCreations uses only 49 strand beading wire because it is the best and has exceptional durability and strength. There are seven types of strands and the others are simply not as strong–avoid them if you can. 

2. Stretch jewelry is easy-to-wear, is easy to give as a gift and is a fun addition to anyone’s wardrobe. Trouble is, it can break easily or become too loose if the stretch cord is thin or of poor quality. At SWCreations, we do not string beads on anything less than a 1.0 mm cord, because it is the strongest and we have found it lasts the longest.  We have tried and tested all the variations from stretch cord to stretch fiber and found they just do not stand up to our quality expectations. Unfortunately, this means we are not using our stretch cord for our smaller beads, such as; small Swarvoski crystals, freshwater pearls, and other beads with small holes.  We have tried and tested all the variations from stretch cord to stretch fiber and found they just do not stand up to our quality expectations.

3. You may have never heard of a jump ring, but you probably have a few in your jewelry collection already. This small piece of metal is the circle that a clasp holds on to–on a necklace or bracelet for example–and if it stretches to wide, the clasp will fall out. Many years ago, jewelry suppliers create a split ring (like a miniature keychain), but every time that ring was caught on a thread it would pull apart. Unfortunately, in an inexpensive piece of jewelry, the jump ring is often the first to break. Fortunately, there are a few jump ring brands that can stand up to the test of time, and SWCreations uses only those. Our jump rings may not be the cheapest, but they are the strongest, ensuring that your jewelry will last for years to come.

4. The quality of the beads can often give away whether a handmade piece of jewelry is of high or low caliber. Some inexpensive beads are made with an outside coating that will wear off quickly as you wear the item–causing it to chip off if it rubs against other jewelry you have layered or onto your clothing. Some cheap beads even have a coating that is water soluble, meaning if you’re caught in one downpour, your piece is ruined. New beads enter the market every day and we usually create a piece to test out, some are obvious duds, but if you buy a piece from us and the bead looks nothing like when you purchased it, please let us know right away.  Avoid this situation entirely by choosing beads that are made from authentic gemstones, crystals and glass such as those we utilize at SWCreations.  

Beaded Anklets - Less Common Always Popular

Beaded Anklets - Less Common Always Popular

One very popular piece of jewelry that’s always popular and less common is the anklet.  It adds a little something special to the warm weather wardrobe that a necklace simply cannot do.  There are a lot of styles available to get when you are shopping for beaded anklets.  When choosing an anklet for purchase, you will need to consider several types, including designer anklets, beach anklets, and the various sizes of anklets.  These sizes are 8-9 inch, 9-10 inch, 10-11 inch, and 11-12 inch.  It not a bad idea to measure your ankle or the ankle of the person for whom you are buying the anklet prior to purchase.
July 15, 2013 by Stephanie White

History of Handcrafted Beaded Jewelry Article

mauve freshwater pearl braceletYou might feel that the history of handcrafted beaded jewelry cannot possibly be very interesting, but in fact, it is quite intriguing to learn where this part of culture began.  Some say that the beginnings of beaded jewelry began more than 70,000 years ago when man found the beads and gems and thought it was incredibly beautiful.  Beaded jewelry has been used in many ways.  One way is simply for beauty.  Another is for value.  Some would trade and buy with beaded jewelry or beads.  And some cultures even used them as talisman.  So how was beaded jewelry initially created?  Let’s take a look.

Although a man or a woman living in those times would not possibly have any practical use for them; however, they could not carry them around without modern day bags or carrying devices, nor did they have pockets.  So, as legend tells us, they attached the gemstones or beads to leather straps and wore them around their neck to create the first handcrafted beaded jewelry.  Over time, handcrafted beaded jewelry started to become a status symbol.  Those with power and wealth were the ones who had beaded jewelry.  Beads even have been used as an item of value for which trade could be made. 

Handcrafted beaded jewelry has been made out of many types of beads.  Beads have been known to be made out of glass, bone, porcelain, shells, paper, clay, metals, gemstones, ivory, and even wood.    Bead craftsman often held the trade secrets in confidence.  They were expected to keep the bead-making skills a secret.  Some of them even risked themselves if they failed to keep the information to themselves.  Mass production of beads didn’t even begin until the 1800s when glass beading became widely available.  It was at this time that Swarovski created their process for making their special beads which are still in high demand today.  Even today, the secrets of how their beads are made are kept secret.

Different parts of the world created different types of handcrafted beaded jewelry.  Central and South America are known for their wampum and quill creations, while Native American beadwork usually included a lot of turquoise and silver.  Bead making in France began as early as 38,000 BC!  Worry beads, Filigree, and highly decorated ceramic beads originated in Greece, while Italy specialized in the Murano glass beads.  There are dozens of other countries not yet discussed here, but beaded jewelry has a rich and vast history that is incredibly interesting.  Suffice it to say that there is a rich cultural tradition with wearing beaded jewelry.

 

Sources:
History of Beaded Jewelry
Gemstone History and Beliefs

Unique Handcrafted Beaded Jewelry Article

Handmade jewelry is an extension of your personal trait. As a reflection of your own character, it’s a total injustice if your jewelry was just made from imported common stuff. It is worse if your jewelry collections are just the standard off-the-shelf items that everyone wears or buys at the big chain stores.

handmade unique jewelryYou are unique that is why your jewelry should be unique also. And handmade jewelry is the way to go. A handmade jewelry is a highly customized personal design. It may not be too expensive, but its real worth comes from the level of personalization invested on it.

A unique handmade jewelry can be funky, classic, elegant or anything in between. You can use it on any occasion and it will still fit into your attire. Because handmade jewelry is made not just for the clothes you wear but for your very own personal and unique characteristics. This is the secret why a unique handmade jewelry is very versatile.

You may want to achieve a modern look to your personality and add a funky playfulness to your wardrobe; then handmade jewelry should be your only option. You need to buy a handmade jewelry that can accurately depict your unique sense of modern playfulness and zest.

A unique handmade jewelry can provide color to your modern ensemble. You might opt for an all black satin night dress and top it off with a hot and whitish handmade jewelry made from sea glass beads. The contrast catch attention you can surely make a lot of heads turn. You’re actually exuding the seriousness of modern lifestyles but with a bit of lively playfulness avoiding drabness and monotony.

A unique handmade jewelry can also be used to emphasize a personal statement. Because a handmade jewelry can be made from very exotic and extraordinary materials, the artistic flair that you can put into it is limitless.

You may use your handmade jewelry to express your indignation or approval for a certain issue. It can highlight your advocacy in a very fashionable and cultured manner. You will end up getting your expected attention without really doing anything. All you did was to wear unique handmade jewelry that carries your personal statement.

Handmade jewelry designs are not modern inventions. In fact, early humans and the ancients decorate themselves with handmade shells, gemstones beads or anything they found beautiful. As the technology for jewelry making advances, the sophistication of handmade jewelry making also improved.

Today, you can find lots of handmade jewelry set as bracelets, anklets, necklaces, rings, and decorative buttons, pins or clasps. The materials used to make a handmade jewelry also became elaborate and unique. Sea glass beads, colorful gems, shiny silvers, and elegant stones are just some of the materials used for handmade jewelry making.

If you want to highlight your unique personality or rise above the complete drabness of mass produced accessories, then you need to have a set of handmade jewelry. You can become a modern cosmopolitan citizen just by wearing an elegant handmade jewelry.

July 05, 2013 by Stephanie White
Beaded Earrings for 6 E-Personalities Article

Beaded Earrings for 6 E-Personalities Article

handmade lampwork errrings
Beaded earrings are a wonderful gift for the elegant, eclectic, energetic, eccentric, earthy, or eloquent person in your life. There are many personality styles out there, and just as many earrings made out of beautiful beads! Elegant earrings are the first. Beautiful, gentle colors made in many dangling styles to suit even the most equally elegant outfit are available for purchase. These earrings are always designed in a large array of shapes and styles to match nearly any style outfit or level of elegance.
Beaded jewelry in the form of earrings is especially great for the eclectic earring collector. Some of the designs you can find among beaded earrings are incredibly unusual, and are perfect for that one person you know who tends to walk away from the beaten path! You know this friend. She is always wearing bright colors and making bold statements in her accessories. She probably adores artwork as well. The colors available in this type of handcrafted jewelry varies so much that you are sure to find the perfect item! An energetic person is always likely to wear quality handcrafted jewelry that is made out of dangly beads, because energetic people are always expressing themselves flamboyantly!

Beaded gifts are always in season, and even more so for the eccentric person you know. This quality handcrafted jewelry is also appreciated by the earthy friend or family member that you know. These people truly appreciate things that are handmade. The eloquent person in your life is sure to appreciate the fine quality of this type of handcrafted jewelry and express that back to you when they thank you for this gift. If you are getting beaded earrings for yourself, you are sure to find the colors, styles, shapes, and unique features attractive and never boring.

Handmade earrings are a great gift for yourself or someone you know who is of nearly any personality. This quality handcrafted jewelry is carefully created by loving hands of the jewel and artist, creating a unique set of earrings each and every time. Whether dangly, earthy, sophisticated, fancy, wacky, or fun, you will be sure to love this style of handcrafted jewelry. It never goes out of style, so you will have a set of earrings to weather all of the changes in fashion! Get a few color sets that match a multitude of colors, and you’ll have earrings to last a lifetime!
June 08, 2013 by Stephanie White

Fashion Turning To Handmade Jewelry?

With the economy in a slump, many people don’t have the cash that they used to in order to buy the jewelry that they need and want. Even though you may not have the same jewelry budget that you used to have, it doesn’t mean that you can’t accessorize and have jewelry that is fashionable and that accentuates your outfits.

lampwork beaded jewelryHandmade jewelry has made a comeback and has become very popular these days. In fact, open up any fashion magazine as of late and you will see some form of handmade jewelry being worn by today’s top models and fashion icons. Most of this type of jewelry utilizes beads as the main element of the piece. This makes this type of jewelry very fun to wear as beads can be purchased in all shapes and sizes to create some very interesting jewelry pieces. Instead of paying thousands of dollars on expensive jewelry pieces, the average person can buy everything they need to make a fantastic jewelry piece from their local craft store for under 20 dollars. This price break alone has made jewelry handmade products extremely popular.

Not only is the price affordable nice with this type of jewelry, but the customization possibilities are also a huge draw. Have you ever wanted a certain jewelry piece that matched your outfit, but was unable to find something? This is very common, but this doesn’t have to be the case any longer. With handmade jewelry, you can create exactly what you want to match that unique outfit, or other accessories that may be difficult to match with. Many people who get into creating jewelry handmade often will create pieces completely specific to one outfit, and with the prices of this type of beaded jewelry being affordable, you could literally create a piece of jewelry for every outfit you own.

While it is cheap to make jewelry yourself, many people are finding that hand made jewelry sells for quite a bit in the local and online jewelry markets. While anyone can get beads for cheap, the creativity and combination that people create are what drives the masses to buy this type of jewelry. Many stay at home moms have been able to establish a pretty decent income driving business on the side creating handmade jewelry.

As you can see, handmade jewelry is extremely fashionable and is family budget approved. Have some fun and create that perfect piece of jewelry that you have always wanted. If you aren’t the creating type, look in local stores and online for the perfect piece that someone else has created. Regardless, handmade jewelry is here to stay and is definitely fashionable.

June 04, 2013 by Stephanie White

Button Jewelry - The Perfect Unique Gift

button beaded jewelryButton jewelry is a surprisingly attractive type of handcrafted jewelry that you can get today that is custom designed and look like designer pieces of art. These items make incredibly thoughtful quality handcrafted jewelry, and those you give them to will be impressed with their quality. You can get button items crafted in the form of bracelets and pendant necklaces. These items, when combined together in the hands of a fine jewel and artist, make incredible gifts for those you love, and certainly are conversation pieces for those who own and wear them.

Giving button jewelry as a gift is unique in itself, and the recipient will be amazed at how unique this item is. Handcrafted jewelry such as this is not common and will be appreciated. The first item that you can give is a button art necklace, which is presented in the format of an articulate looking pendant on a chain. They can have many colors and patterns, and come in a limitless variety of styles. Shimmering sterling silver is often used as is glimmering gold. Some show more of an artist’s hand while others are more sophisticated and simple. These pieces of quality handcrafted jewelry are sure to be treasured for years to come.

As unique as button jewelry is in the form of a pendant necklace, crafted in fine quality, a bracelet made out of buttons and other accessories of artistic merit is also a great gift. When giving a bracelet, you will be able to see that there are many more artistic expressions in this piece of handcrafted jewelry. As a gift, a bracelet is something that someone can wear to accentuate an outfit, so if you know the recipient wears a lot of a certain color, consider getting a bracelet that will go along well with that. The many parts in a quality handcrafted jewelry piece usually flow well in a color theme.

Giving button jewelry as a gift is something that the recipient is sure to cherish for many years to come. Because the gift is so unusual, they will remember you very well every time someone asks them where they got it as well. This makes the bracelet a special gift indeed. Handcrafted jewelry always assures that the item is unique and made of fine quality. Giving a piece of quality handcrafted jewelry is a loving gesture which will be remembered for a long time.

October 08, 2012 by Stephanie White
Beaded Jewelry Trends - Summer Gemstone Pick

Beaded Jewelry Trends - Summer Gemstone Pick

While we think of summer, imagery of colorful clothes, the warmth of the sun, after that laughter come to mind. We think of possibilities for all the great times we will get to share together with family and friends as weather shifts from chilly and dreary to warm and cheery. Beaded jewelry enthusiasts think in terms of finding fashionable pieces which are as delightful and versatile to dress in as the other accessories in their wardrobe. Many choose citrine because it fulfills all the requirements that help it become a sensible choice for summer wear.
July 14, 2012 by Stephanie White
Beaded Bracelets Are the Perfect Gift Article

Beaded Bracelets Are the Perfect Gift Article

Beaded bracelets are no longer the simple threaded bracelets they once were. These fine pieces of handcrafted jewelry are in high demand as their hand crafted beauty shines through. Everything you can imagine is available, including button jewelry bracelets, crystal bracelets of every color, charm and bead bracelets, gemstone bracelets, clustered beaded pieces, earthy bracelets, and double strand bracelets. These fine quality hand crafted jewelry items are stunning and one of a kind. You don’t want to buy something that’s manufactured when you can get a unique piece.

July 14, 2012 by Stephanie White

The Fashion of Wearing Beaded Jewelry

blue dichroic lampwork pendant
seems to come in waves, like circles that recycle things over and over, rolling old things back into the new, years after the original idea was formed. As the years go by, you may have started to recognize that things that were cool when you were a kid are somehow cool again—however bad or good the idea might be.  For instance, the latest fashions, though devoid of this kind of accessory for a few years, are again turning to beaded jewelry for hailed accessorizing.  But this kind of jewelry has been around a lot longer than you probably think.
Jewelry and ornamentation have been a part of cultures all over the world probably since it began.  As people began to experiment with the resources around them—stones, trees, plants, clay, etc, they began to see great opportunities to create beautiful things.  In tribes of old, the spiritual and political leaders of the community were sometimes designated by the kind of jewelry and accessories they wore.  It was a sign of something special—of social advantage, or of power.  

These people crafted beaded necklaces, head adornments, and other things to drape on their bodies out of many things.  Sometimes they would string them on plants or animal skins, and, of course, all were made by hand.  Beaded jewelry was the norm, because most everything had to be crafted, and then strung on some kind of strand or chain.  Almost anything could become a bead:  a bone, a small rock, some precious stone or metal, or even hair or parts of an animal for good luck.  

Soon enough, women began to adopt the fashion of wearing beaded jewelry.  In more recent years, it has become a large fashion industry and ranges from all kinds of weights, lengths, materials and colors.  Even handmade jewelry is becoming more popular, with kits available to the average person.  Many people have begun to make their watches into a piece of beaded jewelry, and these are becoming more and more widespread.

These practices stem from old traditions that have been passed down from generation to generation, through centuries.  Every culture has its own twist on how it is done, or what it is made from, but most cultures use some kind of beaded jewelry to designate something of meaning, or even just to promote the idea of beauty.  We are not so far removed.  And now, with so many options available, you can find the kind of jewelry that will really mean something to you.
July 14, 2012 by Stephanie White
The Timeless Handmade Jewelry Article

The Timeless Handmade Jewelry Article

Jewelry has always been essential to people who loves to accessorize. One special piece can make such a difference in the presentation of same outfit. There are so many different variations and handmade jewelry stands out because of its uniqueness. Beaded, carved, filigreed, engraved, sequined, knitted, and painted, various techniques for handicraft arts have been continually developed in all cultures throughout time, which certainly expand the variety of handmade jewelry.
February 13, 2012 by Stephanie White