After moving into a new apartment following lockdown 1.0, I was fortunate enough to have my own home studio! A whole room just for my jewellery business! It felt like such a luxury after years of workbenches in bedrooms, hallways and my parent’s dining room table.
When setting up my studio, I realised that I needed to create an environment that I wanted to spend time in. I know that sounds silly, but I wanted to surround myself with things that motivate me. I have gradually filled up my workshop with plants, trinkets, and prints from local artists. I think it’s really important to create a space that makes you feel inspired especially when you work from home.
To make the room work for me, I felt it was important to think about both elements of running a jewellery business – both the making and the admin. For this reason, I divided the room into two halves, one for the dirty work and the other for the admin and packaging.
As all jewellers know, making jewellery is a very messy business, so I wanted to separate this from other essential tasks. This has been a game-changing decision for me!
After spending a long time using one bench for all jewellery-related tasks, I have noticed such a big difference in separating them into different stations.
Keep any old jars and tins! They really come in handy for storing all your findings, chains and off cuts. I am constantly looking in vintage shops for things to store all my little bits and pieces in. Small sets of desktop drawers are also useful for storing different types of silver wire and sheet.
Pegboards are a great way to store your jewellery tools. Not only do they look nice, they are also super practical! All of your tools are within reach and you can organise them with various hooks, shelves and storage pots. I like to display artwork on mine too. They are also useful if you are in rented accommodation (as I am) because you can fix them to your desk rather than having to make any marks on the walls.
I know this may seem like an obvious one but cupboards are essential for a jewellery workshop. I have found that by having storage cupboards and organising everything into boxes within the cupboards, it has made me feel much happier in my workspace. I like to sort cupboards and boxes into different categories such as wax carving, stamping and soldering. This means that they are organised and ready to go but don’t clutter the workspace.
Recently, I have been taking part in a lot of online markets, which have required doing an Instagram Live video. This meant that the other stallholders and I had to have a stall set up in our own workspace. This made me realise how much I love having my work on display. I have now set up some shelving to permanently display my work. This not only motivates me but also means that jewellery is easy to access and others who visit your space can see it too.
For me this is a mixture of other makers work, plants and books. Perfect for when you are struggling to stay motivated.
One of the main ways I made my space work for me is by working in it! There’s no point spending a lot of time or money setting up a jewellery workshop if it isn’t practical. Start small, get making and then see what works for you. You can gradually add items to help you organise your space – you don’t need to buy them all at once. You also don’t need to spend lots of money! When looking for studio furniture, I suggest thinking outside the box and trying places such as vintage shops. Keep an eye out for antique industrial furniture such as pigeon holes or watchmaker’s desks.
If possible, choose a room or space with good lighting. Not only will this help you with the technical aspects of making jewellery, but it will also make you feel good. Sometimes the lighting in my studio isn’t that great, so I have a standard lamp too, which doubles as a useful tool when taking photos of your jewellery.
My journey into jewellery-making began during my time spent studying Photography at Leeds College of Art. I started an evening class in silversmithing, and I was instantly hooked! I soon began spending most of my time watching jewellery making tutorials online and reading jewellery making books, before enrolling in other part-time courses at various jewellery schools.
Each piece is carefully handcrafted by me in my little workshop in Warwickshire.
I enjoy making classic designs, often inspired by the architecture and art of the places I visit whilst travelling. I create timeless pieces that can be worn every day with any style.
I strive to create long-lasting jewellery that can be cherished for years to come. With this in mind, my jewellery has an organic, simplistic aesthetic allowing each item to be worn during any season.
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