My Jewelry-making Goals for 2014 - What Are Yours?

Jan 22, 2014

Tubes Filled with Colorful Beads
Jewelry-making goal #4: Use up what I have in my stash. (Who am I kidding?)
We're well into 2014, and I've been thinking a lot about what my jewelry-making goals are going to be for this year. I've been spending the last few weeks working on some new jewelry making techniques, like playing around a little bit with my micro-torch and experimenting with resin jewelry, but when it comes down to it, what I want to do more of in 2014 is beadweaving. Of course, learning these new jewelry making techniques means that I can incorporate them into my beadweaving projects. What a fun challenge that will be for the coming year!

To make it real and concrete, I decided to write down each of these five jewelry making goals on a sticky note and post it above my desk so that I have a reminder (or two or three or five) when I feel stuck. And I'm sharing them here with you, too!

My Top 5 Jewelry-making Goals for 2014

1. Keep a better beading journal. I have to admit, when I look at the number of pieces I actually completed in 2013, it was pretty pitiful. For 2014, I'm going to keep a better journal of my jewelry making projects, both beaded and even the ones that fall under the categories of stringing, wire, and mixed media jewelry, so that I have a better idea of what I'm actually working on throughout the year.

Elaborate Sculptural Beaded Necklace
Jewelry-making Goal #2: Experiment with sculptural bead embroidery techniques
2. Experiment more with my bead embroidery techniques. Some of you remember that a couple of years ago, I created an enormous and intricate collar for the Battle of the Beadsmith that featured shapes made with a combination of sculptural peyote stitch and bead embroidery. Since then, I have filled an entire sketchbook with ideas for new beaded jewelry patterns using this technique -- but haven't actually gotten around to beading any of them yet! This will be the year that I stop sketching and start beading on some of these designs, to see what works and what doesn't with this technique.

3. Learn more about resin. I started playing with resin two years ago, and even though some of my first experiments were, well, less than successful, I've grown to love the technique of filling a little bezel with colorful resin and inclusions. Seeing the work of Susan Lenart Kazmer has inspired me even more to create my own resin focal pieces that I can enhance with beaded ropes or beaded chains.

4. Use up what I have in my stash. I don't think I'd be a proper beader if I didn't at least include this -- does it sound familiar? "I will not buy any more beads in [insert year here] until I use up what I already have in my bead stash." Well, this year, I have to try to stick to it. I've been hoarding, I mean, collecting seed beads for over 13 years. I most likely have every color that I could possibly need for any project that I could possibly want to make -- right?

Colorful Resin Jewelry
Jewelry-making goal #3: Perfect my resin techniques
5. Make time to bead, every day. Now that you've stopped laughing after reading my last jewelry making goal for 2014 (you have stopped laughing, haven't you?), I've got one final goal to share. Believe it or not, there are some days that I don't get to my bead mat, between juggling deadlines and shuttling kids to and from play dates, my beads often get set aside. But this year, I'm setting my alarm a half hour earlier every morning and spending that time working on whatever is on my bead mat. (Because you know there's always something on my beading mat!)

Colorful Metal Jewelry Pieces
If you want to branch out and learn new jewelry making techniques in 2014, think about exploring more ways to include metals in your jewelry making ideas, and even better, learning how to color metals through the application of patinas. Patina: 300+ Coloration Effects for Jewelers and Metalsmiths will show you  how to advance from beginner jewelry making techniques for coloring your copper, brass, and aluminum jewelry-making components all the way to expert surface treatments. For a limited time, you can get both the eBook and print edition of Patina: 300+ Coloration Effects for Jewelers and Metalsmiths for one low price!

So, let's get our jewelry-making goals written down. Leave a comment here on the Beading Daily blog and share your jewelry-making goals for 2014 with us!

Bead Happy,


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on Jan 22, 2014 5:54 AM

I agree with either beading every day or practising a new technique every day, but, as bead sellers, we disagree with using up your stash - you should be buying more beads!  Our main jewellery-making goals for this year are to expand our offerings by searching for the newest and most unusual semi-precious stones, and finding ways to use them.

For example, titanium-plated semi-precious stones are hard to find and just starting to come onto the market.  They make really eye-catching jewellery, so we want to play around with using these.

mjmom98 wrote
on Jan 22, 2014 6:21 AM

As I was organizing my bead cabinet the other day, I decided to count how many projects needed finishing or fixing.  I am embarrassed to say that there were 75 little plastic bags of projects in varying stages of completion!  The problem with this is that not only are there numerous 95% completed projects that I can't wear yet, there are also a number of tubes and strings of beads included with each project that aren't available for other new and exciting projects!  So, now that I've gotten that off my chest, my single jewelry making  goal for 2014 is to finish or pull the plug on all of those old projects, thus freeing up beads for new projects and clearing my mind for wonderful new projects!

cinisajoy wrote
on Jan 22, 2014 9:45 AM

Just remember to change the year and you can reuse this column next January.   Teasing of course.

My goals.   Not spend as much time on the computer.   Try to do at least one project a month in some craft.    

Use my stash and do not buy any craft stuff in 2014.

Tracy@29 wrote
on Jan 22, 2014 12:25 PM

More wire wrapping! I have a stash of silver wire that I've had and added to for years! Now it's time to start the wrap!


Debbie@304 wrote
on Jan 22, 2014 1:02 PM

Well, I won't add use up my bead stash to my goals for 2014 - there just aren't enough hours in each day or days in the year to ever do that.  And I won't stop buying interesting beads, either.  I always buy within a very limited price range but it's amazing what you can find.

One of my major goals (again) this year is to work on photographing and pricing my collection properly and getting it onto my web site.

Another is going to be a lot more fun.  Over the past few years I've added some beautiful large beads made of polished stone such as jasper to my stash so I want to work more of these into my designs.  Since I work primarily with seed beads, this will be a very interesting challenge.

EllenaA wrote
on Jan 22, 2014 2:06 PM

Me too! I simply MUST use up my huge stash -- but don't worry beadstampede, we'll always need more to pull things together. My #1 goal is to learn to take good photos so I can at least post on Facebook for people who keep asking me, "So what is it that you DO?"

Jabby67 wrote
on Jan 25, 2014 2:45 PM

I'm still working on my last year wish to finish all my UFO's. But it is so difficult if you see all these new patterns,  colours and shapes you just have to try.

Jabby67 wrote
on Jan 25, 2014 2:45 PM

I'm still working on my last year wish to finish all my UFO's. But it is so difficult if you see all these new patterns,  colours and shapes you just have to try.

Jabby67 wrote
on Jan 25, 2014 2:46 PM

I'm still working on my last year wish to finish all my UFO's. But it is so difficult if you see all these new patterns,  colours and shapes you just have to try.

LuluBM wrote
on Jan 25, 2014 2:58 PM

I truly identify with the "almost finished" all the crafts I enjoy!

So my resolution is to finish at least one and hopefully two projects that have already been started each month this year. I plan to schedule time for that twice a week and to hold hostage time for other fun things until I have at least worked on the finishing. Or schedule an entire day just for finishing. I did that one time for "fix-its" and was really impressed with what I got done!

I also want to track what I do with a journal, inventory and pictures so I may be on the computer more. But then I won't lose track of those projects that wind up in the "almost finished" bin.

14388 wrote
on Jan 26, 2014 3:47 AM

I haven't stop laughing yet... Using up sll my beads... Not buy anything new.... Finishing the unfinished... My God... And the best comment... Just change the year and you can reuse it... Well, I am laughing because I couldnt agre more than with "who are we kidding"? And ladies, I am no different . Love this.. love this world of beads...

SandraJ@20 wrote
on Jan 27, 2014 12:49 PM

Re your #4 - I told my husband I wouldn't start any other techniques, thus no new products except what was necessary to finish things I had already laught in both of our general directions!

on Jan 31, 2014 7:19 PM

Hmmmmmmmmm.....  Great article!  And great comments.  How about THIS one?  Put away the beads and beadie goodies I purchased in 2013!  As  in put them away in the places they belong, rather than in two huge wooden decoupaged chests I made for that purpose.  HA

on Feb 1, 2014 7:32 PM

#4 and #5 are wish lists for me. I'm working full time, taking classes to finish my Biz degree this December. So, time to bead is almost non-existent except on custom orders. hahaha.

BonnieR@21 wrote
on Feb 12, 2014 1:21 PM

Sometimes when I look at the old UFOs I think they are not worthy of my time, and I prefer to use the new stuff that is speaking to me!

on Feb 15, 2014 12:51 PM

I do need to use up what I have in my bead collection, but it always seems that when I want to begin a new project I'm missing a key element or color of seed bead.  Sigh.   Anyway, now my goal is to be creative and find another way or color to fit into the design.  Maybe, I'll discover something really cool to make.  Here's hoping.