Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Design This – Carnelian n Pearl Bracelet

A couple of months ago, in another “Design This” post, I mentioned that my customer also had a bracelet project for herself in mind after I finished with her daughter’s jade and pearl necklace. During our discussions about the necklace, a few directions emerged for the custom bracelet order. My customer liked the tigers’ eye beads that she had seen, wanted to use some of her leftover pearls, liked carnelian and wanted the bracelet to be double stranded with an ornate clasp and gold plated findings.

Before I began a design, I took a photo of some of my carnelian and tigers' eye beads with a couple of pearls for size comparison so that my customer could let me know which ones she liked or disliked. (see photo #1) Next, I put together three different patterns with the beads that made the cut, along with the tigers’ eye beads and leftover pearls. (see photo #2)

While we were exchanging design ideas, I needed to locate a clasp and spacers for a double strand bracelet. Since I hadn’t made one before, I didn’t have these supplies on hand. I appreciate my customer having faith in my ability to tackle a new form. (I found the double strand bracelet to be a little more challenging to finish off than a single strand, due to the proximity of the second strand. I also had to be careful as the natural components had to be matched for size to keep both strands the same length. Other than that the process was essentially the same.)

When my supply order arrived, I strung up a design based on my customer’s feedback and sent a photo of it before finishing off the other end in case any adjustments to the design or length were needed. (see photo #3) The reply I received back was, “I really love it, can't wait to wear it.” With that, I finished off the other end so that I could get the finished bracelet off to my customer as soon as possible. (see photo #4)

Custom work is really gratifying when my customers are so thrilled with their orders. I also have to admit that this was the first custom piece that I was sorry that I hadn’t designed for myself, so I’m glad it was well received. Contact me if you are interested in discussing a custom design project.


  1. Cathy made this bracelet for me. I love it and wear it often. Cheers for the New Year! Lisa