Communicating What I do Through A Sign

by Lady Mockingbird.
(Upstate, New York)

Wire form on outdoor sign

The sign hanging next to the parking stalls

I have found over the years that people tend to misunderstand what I mean when I say that I make Jewelry. Some jump to the conclusion that I’m a beader. Others start showing me their diamond engagement rings and asking me to make a wedding band to match, while others still assume I’m making jewelry ephemera (things that are fun, cheap, and not intended to last.)

Detail of the wire work on the sign

Detail of the wire work on the sign

When I say that I am a Wire Artisan, or a Wire Sculptor I usually get either a blank stare, or the faux knowing look people give when they want to seem knowledgeable but aren’t.

Over time I learned to simply show them what I do. My business cards have photos of my work, for example. But then I decided to open a studio/showroom and I came upon the conundrum yet again. How could I make my exterior signs show some of my wire working skills.

Detail of the wire work on the sign

Detail of the wire work on the sign

To do that I came up with a special shop logo sign. It is smaller than my street side sign and is located next to the parking stalls. The base of the sign is a neatly cut and shaped piece of wood done up for me, thankfully, by a friend. It is painted with exterior black enamel, for durability. But then I added my own art. I crafted the logo entirely out of copper wire and copper tubing. Then I used antique copper nails to affix my work to the sign.

Standing next to the streetside exterior sign.

Standing next to the streetside exterior sign.

Since I put it up two days ago, I see people stopping to examine my little “Mockingbird Lane This Way” direction indicator. By the time the get into my shop, they have a much better idea of what to expect there. Hand crafted, quality fine jewelry made using all sorts of wire.

Lady Mockingbird
Mockingbird Lane Wire on ETSY

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  • Rich Yodis says:

    I have had the same experience with people inquiring about my work… I work predominantly with Chainmaille. Although I specify “Chainmaille” in any of my marketing/signs/etc, I get a surprising amount of people asking for wedding bands, watch repairs, etc. I designed a banner that pretty clearly depicts my work in photos, but have always thought it would be awesome to create a sign made from actual maille… This definitely inspired me! Thank you for sharing, and again, beautiful work!

  • Diane says:

    This is not only a fabulous idea, but so beautiful too!

  • Donna Geurin says:

    I have also said “I make jewelry” and felt strange saying this. But I recently read an article that said we should be saying “I am a jewelry artist”. This seems much better. Afterall, we have spent years learning and developing our skills. Just thought I would share this.

  • Christa says:

    This is a beautiful sign and a great idea.

  • Angie S says:

    Diana, that sign is SUBLIME!!! I adore it, and believe it offers a fantastic preview of what is to come!
    How long will it be before someone commissions a sign from you? Not long, I’m guessing!
    Best of luck with your studio/showroom!

  • Rich, I never dreamed this post and my idea would inspire someone else. Yay you!

    Diane, aww you are making me blush.

    Donna, I usually say I am a wire artisan, or that I make artisan wire jewelry, but sometimes all the listeners hear is “Jeweler.”

    Christa, Thanks.

    Angie S, Since I can’t do the wood cutting, I hope I don’t get commissioned to do another sign. Grin.

  • zoraida says:

    Your sign is beautiful and a great idea!! If I ever open up a studio, I would do something similar (in my own style of course).
    I usually refer to myself as a “jewelry artist”. It just seems to encompass more. But they will always be people who ask what a jewelry artist is.

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