Something For Me…

by Sue O’Mullan.
(Bucks County Pennsylvania, USA)

As Time Goes By

Our etsy existence, our facebook business page existence is all related to my son and autism awareness. I find that I don’t bead anymore because it has become such an expense to keep him “stringing” on a daily basis. I just turned 50 – bilateral mastectomy without any reconstructive surgery because I can’t with my life and my son- radical hysterectomy – and very depressed.

Enchanted Forest (my first sale)

I found polymer clay – or rather have been playing with it for quite some time. Not sure that these are even worth sending but I like making them, they make me feel good and I’ve sold three already (without even listing them on etsy yet).

Your honest opinion… please! If they are horrid – let me know… Also -how much ?

I won’t lie – the material is not much – unless I use Swarovski crystals, but – the labor is intensive! Quite intensive! I take forever while I finish the pieces – because that it when it turns into a multi-media piece. I add everything – my polymer flowers, some resin tricks, inks, polishes, varnishes, paints, you name it I have done it to one of these bracelets.

Peacock Me Pretty

But I enjoy making them and for once…. a small part of “ME” is coming back to this world instead of “being Danny’s mom” or the “autism warrior” or an “advocate for kids on the spectrum” or “the autism specialist in our area”…. I’ve found me again!

Steam Punk In Style

Sue O’Mullan
Dannylions Pieces at Facebook
Dannylions at Etsy Shop

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Comments

  1. They are BEAUTIFUL! I don’t know about price, but I love them!!!

  2. Hi Sue, I think these cuffs are wonderful. I love the surface designs, the colors, and the added elements (like flowers with jeweled centers).

    And the fact that you’ve sold 3 without even listing them sounds like you’ve hit on something that resonates with people!

    I’m glad to hear you’re making some jewelry yourself again – that it’s something just about YOU, and that you’re doing some art here that nourishes your creative soul.

    Regarding pricing, you can use my jewelry pricing formula to make sure you’re making a profit in your pricing. Keep track of the time it takes you to make your bracelets – you need to make sure you’re getting compensated for the time that goes into each one.

    Also, I don’t know if you’ve seen the post here on creating polymer clay jewelry efficiently – it might help you make more bracelets in less time, especially if you decide to start making a lot of them.

    After you go through the pricing formula above, if you’re concerned that your customers might not be able to afford your pricing you can always add a second, lower-priced series of polymer cuffs that are still wonderful but less detailed and less labor-intensive than your more artistic ones you shared here.

    And of course if you do decide to make a lot of them, even if each one is unique there will be ways you can do a batch of bracelets at each step to cut back on the time each one takes.

    Also – have you considered making polymer earrings to go with these cuffs? As cool as these are, I’m sure people will want creative earrings to go with them.

    When I looked at your bracelets above, my first thought was “where can I get one, and will there be earrings to go with them?”

    One way you can promote these bracelets (and matching earrings, if you make them) is as a gift item. That’s one of the fab things about cuff bracelets – they’re very giftable because they can comfortably fit a range of wrist sizes, so getting an exact bracelet fit isn’t crucial. And these would really make a nice gift.

    Also I can see some people wanting them personalized in some way – with text, motifs, colors, added elements, etc. If you have custom orders, I would definitely charge more for them because you’ll be putting extra time and artistry into them.

    Sue, thanks so much for sharing these lovely cuffs here! It’s wonderful to see your work, and to hear that you’ve got a corner of jewelry-making that’s just about you.

    Please keep us posted!

    Hugs to you! :)

  3. Sometimes we do our best when life gets rough and we find our reward in knowing how the creative spirit heals us in some way. Your items are a work of art. You are onto something, enjoy the ride!

  4. These are fantastic! I love them! There’s a great use of colour and the embellishments are lovely! I’m glad they’ve helped you find “You”! Keep up the great work :) I’m sure you’ll find you have more great sales!

  5. Sharon Solt says:

    I love them! You should definitely continue to make them. Rena has marvelous tips. We all need some “me time” and I think you have found your niche! Congrats!

  6. I love, love, LOVE these bracelets! I love the colors you used, the texturing and designs. I say go for it girl!! You should be very proud of your work. I know I’m jealous! :)

  7. Anna of OneHeart says:

    Hi Sue
    Just on the way out the door, so I will write back later on this evening. I did not want to wait though to express to you how magnificent your bracelets are, absolutely continue creating them, your Soul needs to do this creativity.

  8. Hi Sue! LOVE the bracelets! They are different, unique, and beautiful! For pricing, we all struggle with that one. :) Definitely keep making them and try to sell them! The more you sell, the more you can buy supplies! Love the idea of the earrings that Rena gave as well. Fantastic!

  9. Hi, Sue,
    Please don’t doubt yourself. Your bracelets are amazing! The only thing I had to wonder about, never having worked with polymer clay, is how durable they are. Metal cuffs tend to have some flex to them and I’m guessing that the clay doesn’t. Have you road-tested them to see how long they last?

  10. Don’t be afraid of the price you need to charge for your bracelets and don’t under price your time and costs of doing business. I have sold bracelets with inexpensive materials, but very time consuming (4 hours) for $250. When talking with the customers I share some of the creative process and give them an idea of the time I spend on each piece. The right customers are looking for, and appreciate, a well crafted piece. I think your work is unique, eye catching and well designed!

  11. “wow, beautiful” was the first thought that came in my head when I saw them! You certainly are on to something here. I am disabled and when I am not well enough to work on my jewelry, I do a lot of searching online and looking at different artist’s work. I have NEVER seen ones like these! They are so unique and beautiful.

    I understand trying to get part of “me” back. I am going through a divorce after almost 10 years of marriage and with a son on the spectrum. Since 2 1/2 years of my marriage I was so ill that i was completely bed-bound and was neglected horrible by my spouse (how can you just walk past a person literally screaming and writhing in pain until they had no voice left and not even ask if they are OK or if you can do anything to help is beyond me. I couldn’t even do that to a stranger or someone I disliked intensely!) and then after that raising my son basically on my own because his other parent couldn’t be bothered with him – I am getting “ME” back too. I have found that delving deeper into the type of jewelry I really want to do has brought that “ME” out more as well. I’m so happy that you have found a big piece of YOU! Congratulations!

  12. Well Sue – I think these are cracking bracelets – despite my advanced years, I really love the Steampunk thing and you have caught it just right. As to price, I have no idea. Craft work of any sort really never commands a price to match the work and talent that goes into it unless you live in just the right place and are very lucky – that said, craftspeople tend to under price and under value their own work and consequently others will as well so the answer is to find a happy medium – one where you get a reasonable return for the work (cost of materials is almost irrelevant in pricing) and talent you have put into your stuff. Anyway rest assured that your work is good and worthwhile – I really think you have a winner there. Like a previous comment, are they durable? Very good luck…….

  13. These are BEAUTIFUL. I am an Autism Warrior too, my daughter, Melissa, 22 years old. I started my arts and crafts business because it was hard to go to a nine to five. Much success to you.

  14. I LOVE these!! The texture is awesome! I think “Enchanted Forest is my favorite. Keep it up!

  15. Love your unique “voice” which really shows in your gorgeous jewelry! Since they are one-of-a-kind, you can ask more price-wise…I’m thinking between $100-200. It also depends on where you sell your work. I like Rena’s idea of making earrings, matching with the cuffs or on their own, people LOVE EARRINGS and will probably pay $40-60 for a pair (more if it’s a one-of-a-kind). Here’s another idea, how about making long flat curved pieces (2-6 inches) with a hole at each end and attaching chain on each side – voila, a necklace is born! Your designs have endless possibilities…best wishes and enjoy your “ME time.”

  16. I forgot to say my favorites are “As time goes by” and “Steam Punk in Style.” Sparkle and bling are more eye-catching. I could see adding just 3 crystals to “Enchanted Forest” and it would “pop.” Also, the way you transitioned the colors into each other in “Peacock me Pretty” is beautifully done.

  17. Sue O'Mullan says:

    I just saw these comments and I am overwhelmed with joy… I can’t believe that you all took the time to respond. Rena I just adore you and so wished I could live next door… I am literally crying bc you think these are something that are pretty…

    As far as durability it depends on how thick you make them…. Mine are tested by my son…. He plays with them until they are final coated and believe you me, he doesn’t understand the purpose of toys or things until they are in pieces and he is “then” done with this thing… Hard to explain but that is his form of play….

    The earlier ones are trashed lol he broke them into a billion pieces but I needed to learn that if it isn’t Danny proof it won’t be mom proof or someone who is rough with their pieces ….. Funny had to share my first batch were delicate pretty and fine like lace… Lol a billion pieces I tell you.

    I will respond to a few more above but Danny is trying to cook again (on my Facebook yesterday… Funny but took forever to clean up)…

    I love you all. And the earring idea is perfect I made two pendants last night to match bracelets… Lol but earrings would be so much better. Thank you Rena for the great links and phenomenal ideas…. After autism, cancer and my brother’s death it was time to either quietly wither away and die or rise to the challenge and continue to parent Danny bc he needs 24/7 care.

    Xoxoxo to you all. More later

  18. Very beautiful! Very elegant! Greetings! I can not say what is best, because they are all beautiful!
    Svetla

  19. I love these! You have a really original and artistic eye. How about making some pendants in a similar vein? Hang them on leather or cord…

  20. “As Time Goes By” we find ourselves, that cuff speaks volumes! It’s beautiful in so many ways, being a baby boomer it says one thing to me. Steam punk fans will read it differently, that’s two large fan groups to market too. The other cuffs are incredible too.
    May this new line bring you all the success you deserve.

  21. Kym Kinnison says:

    I just wanted to say that I think your work is really lovely and very unique. Don’t give up as it’s not always about making money (although of course this does help)! you have to feed your soul too and do what makes you happy. 2013 could be ypur year, all the best.
    Kym

  22. I love the enchanted forest piece. Beautiful colors, deep texture. I always am jealous of the many jewelry and clothing options that women have. We men can’t get away with wearing nearly as varied pieces as women have available.

  23. From someone who has done polymer clay for over 23 years, I am AMAZED at how beautiful and creative these are! I have never seen cuffs like these!!
    GORGEOUS! Never sell them for less than $120! If this is the way you need to let out your creative side in tough situations then please continue! I hope things get better for you and you continue to heal. Best of luck and hope to see more of a web presence-PS your photos are perfect!

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