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Jewelry Making Blog

Gemstone Beads & the Mohs Scale of Hardness
Sunday, June 07 2015 00:00

Wire Hardness by WigJig  
Gemstone Beads & the Mohs Scale of Hardness

The Mohs Scale of hardness was developed in 1812 by a German mineralogist named Friedrich Mohs. He created a scale to show the relative hardness of minerals based on their ability to visibly scratch, or be scratched by, other minerals. In the Mohs scale, diamonds are at the top with a rating of 10. They can scratch any other mineral, but can't be scratched in turn. Talc is at the bottom of the scale with a rating of one. All other minerals can scratch talc, but it can't scratch anything else - which is probably a good thing since it's the source of talcum powder!

Always keep in mind, however, that hardness and brittleness are totally different. Even though diamonds are at the top of the scale for hardness, they are brittle and can easily be shattered by a hammer blow. The Mohs rating only indicates how easily the gem can be scratched. To help you picture some real life examples, take a look at the list here.

As a jewelry designer, you'll want to be aware of the rating for the gemstone beads you're planning on using in any particular piece. For instance, you might not want to use real pearls for bracelets or rings because of the risk of damage to them from everyday scrapes and bangs. However, they are perfect for necklaces and earrings, where they won't be subjected to as much abrasion and impact damage. 

Generally, gemstones with a Mohs rating of 7 or above should be safe for any jewelry application, including rings and bracelets. Stones with a lower rating can still be used; just be aware that they can be more easily damaged and require a little more care when being worn. 

Contact us for all of your jewelry-making needs and be sure to check out our blog for other interesting and informative articles.

 
This Season's Top Three Must-Have Jewelry Making Supplies
Saturday, June 06 2015 00:00

WigJig Jewelry Making Supplies  
This Season's Top Three Must-Have Jewelry Making Supplies

Making beautiful, high-quality jewelry takes a steady hand, a sharp eye, and a creative mindset.  On top of that, it also requires the best jewelry making supplies that money can buy.  Each season as trends change, professional jewelry makers have to keep their inventory of tools up-to-date, especially if they want their collections to gain popularity in today's competitive market.

Failing to Prepare is Preparing to Fail

Those who are fully prepared for the ever-changing demands of fashion always supply themselves with the best jewelry making tools available. While each modern pro has his or her own technique, there are a few things that they all have in common - namely, the following supplies:

  1. Pliers - You will need a couple different types of these, including flat-nose, round-nose, and nylon-tipped. These days, consumers are picky about what they wear. Getting into those hard-to-reach places in order to make miniscule adjustments could ultimately spell the difference between success and failure when it comes to your bottom line.
  2. Standard Ruler - Choose a ruler made of transparent material so that you can make more accurate measurements on small projects. This season is all about the detail work, so don't miss out on a potentially lucrative trend because your tools are secretly shoddy.  
  3. Wire - This is and most likely always will be the guts of your jewelry making glory.  Be sure to pick up plenty of it, and opt for several colors if you can.  Since modern people are more freely embracing variety as they explore their personalities, you'll need to make jewelry which subtly reflects that.

Always be sure to choose the highest quality tools available.  You don't want to end up botching a job completely just to save a buck.  You might find yourself left with nothing but a bunch of scraps and a costly heap of disappointment.  Just don't be so reluctant to see what is out there these days.

Exploring Your Options Never Hurt

Waiting until the inevitable happens is nowhere near the best plan of action for anybody.  Jewelry making supplies wear out over time, and they often fail to show signs of weakness until it is too late. Even if your current tools suit you just fine, it never hurts to see what's new and improved this season.  When you are ready to upgrade your jewelry making supplies, contact us.

 
Jewelry Making Supplies: How to Effectively Use Charms
Friday, June 05 2015 00:00

Dangles in Purple Bracelet by WigJig  Jewelry Making Supplies: How to Effectively Use Charms

A charm bracelet or necklace is a truly timeless accessory. No, really, they've been around since ancient civilizations and are just as popular today. With trends seeming to dominate all corners of fashion and jewelry, the best investment you can make is to create something timeless. 

Charms are not only cute, but they can be an extremely thoughtful gift due to the personalized meaning of each one. Read on to find the perfect charm to put on a home-made bracelet for your best friend, mom, or even yourself - heck, you deserve it! And with Wigjig, you can do it yourself.

Picking a charm

  • Anchor: Perfect for your flighty friend who could use something to keep her feet on the ground from time to time, the anchor is a symbol of safety, fidelity, and hope.
  • Butterfly: Representing soul, grace, and growth the butterfly is perfect for free spirits who are ready to spread their wings and fly.
  • Daisy: If you have a friend who is an innocent flower herself, the daisy will be a great match for her. They represent love, youth, and purity.
  • Elephant: As a majestic animal should, the elephant represents stability, honor, and strength. Perfect for a girl who does the same in her own life.
  • Key: This charm is great for someone who has been a bit down on their luck lately. The key brings good luck and the ability to unlock doors (love, wealth, health, the possibilities are endless!)
  • Moon: Perfect for girls who like to live by the moon themselves, this charm represents balance, renewal, and mystery.
  • Shell: This charm represents healing, good luck, and protection. Aside from being a happy reminder of better days at the beach, it is perfect for anyone suffering from an illness and looking for the power to pull through.
  • Star: Like a shooting star in the sky, this charm brings magic, power, and good luck. Perfect for all of the special ladies in your life - who doesn't need a little magic?
     

Once you've picked the perfect charm for yourself or for a friend, the next step is creating a bracelet to put it on! This wrapped chain bracelet tutorial is perfect for adding a personalized charm. It's simplicity won't distract from the charm, but it's elegance makes it a great gift for anyone.

Contact us for more jewelry tutorials and supplies.

 
Show How Much You Care With Gemstone Beads
Thursday, June 04 2015 00:00

Gemstone Beaded Earrings by WigJig  Show How Much You Care With Gemstone Beads

We all want to help our loved ones when they feel down, whether it's due to an illness or an emotional crisis. It's the reason we send flowers, cards and even candy. Yet there's another feel-good gift that may actually improve your loved one's health, whether's it being compromised by emotional or actual physical problems. That gift is jewelry made with gemstone beads.

Mystics have believed gemstones have healing properties for centuries, yet in recent years, this has actually become a more mainstream theory. Holistic and natural health practitioners are increasingly turning to gemstones to heal such illnesses as chronic pain, ordinary ailments and those conditions that do not respond to conventional treatment. Their theory is that gemstones, due to the manner in which they form, contain high amounts of intense energy, which can have beneficial effects on both physical and emotional conditions.

One of the most powerful gemstones is quartz. This gem purportedly aids with healing of both mental and physical conditions, as well as contributing to higher self-esteem. 

Another gem considered a powerful healer is topaz. This gem contributes to increased serenity and emotional balance, as well as positively affecting metabolism.

Another powerful gem, especially for those grieving the loss of a loved one, is onyx. This gem can help with feelings of loss as well as provide spiritual insight.

For those individuals suffering from physical illness, coral is an excellent choice. It improves physical energy, contributes to the life force, and helps hold negativity at bay.

Citrine and aquamarine are two gems especially helpful with depression. Aquamarine promotes insight and calms nerves, while citrine combats nervousness and helps promote a more cheerful mood.

Finally, for those suffering from chronic stress, amethyst may help. It helps relieve insomnia, chronic pain and arthritis, as well as helping with circulatory issues.

The next time your loved one is feeling low, try a more unusual mood lifter - jewelry created with gemstone beads!

For the best quality and color in gemstone beads for your jewelry, contact us.

 
Make Trendy Bracelets Using Your WigJig Without Breaking the Bank
Wednesday, June 03 2015 00:00

Summer Extravaganza thru June 23

40% Off All Beads.  Use promo code - beads - at checkout.

 

Beaded Lace WigJig Bracelet

  Make Trendy Bracelets Without Breaking the Bank

Layered bracelets, especially bracelets with charms such as Pandora or Alex and Ani, are huge now a days, but they can get expensive quickly.  With Wig Jig you can cut back on cost and make bracelets with the same beautiful design and feel!  Using our unique wire bending designs you can create the basis for your bracelet and then add beads and charms to create a one of a kind piece of jewelry!

To start, determine how you want your bracelet to look.  Do you want to make a thin bracelet that you can stack with other bracelets, or do you want a thicker bracelet that makes a statement by itself?  For ideas, take a look at the bracelet and watch making section or our website.  For a stand alone bracelet try the Jeweled Memories design, or for a thinner bracelet try the Four Leaf Clover design.

If you want to achieve the Alex and Ani look, you will need memory wire.  Memory wire is a thinker wire that 'remembers' its shape and is already sized for bracelets, necklaces, and rings.  Feed a couple of beads directly onto the memory wire and between them hang a bead dangle made with any bead you want.  Stack a few of these bracelets to achieve the layered, but not bulky look!

Looking to create a Pandora style bracelet?  Again, start with some memory wire and then add our Bali-Style beads, interspersed with some gemstones or glass beads.  Use beads that are near the same width (for example 8mm) and  fill almost the entire length of the memory wire with beads so that only a small amount of wire shows.  Doing this creates the expensive look you're going for without having to buy each individual bead from a jewelers!

And don't forget about our numerous other bracelet designs!  Get creative and layer a Braided Wirebracelet with a colorful Two Strand bracelet or add some sparkle with our beautiful Gemstone Pendants.  Have an idea for a beautiful design but not sure how to create it?  Please don't hesitate contact us with questions or ideas!

 
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