My name is Sara, and I'm the assistant editor for Step by Step Wire Jewelry. I'm looking forward to chatting with some of our readers on this forum!
Please contact me if you'd be interested in our Writer's Guidelines and specs. We're ALWAYS looking for projects of all levels! Don't be afraid, please e-mail a photo or two of projects you're coming up with...they don't have to be perfect, just a clear photograph will do.
Also, if you have any questions about the magazine, like if you need to find a project in one of our older issues, feel free to ask. For any businesses/vendors out there, I'm also in charge of compiling our Product News section, and I'm always looking for new or interesting products to feature. (Believe me, it's great to have free advertising!!!) If you have any tips (if you're not a vendor) of cool things you might've purchased recently, please also send those my way.
My e-mail is email@example.com.
Hope to hear from you soon, and thank you so much for your interest in Step by Step Wire Jewelry!
I have a few suggestions. Step by Step Wire is the publication I am most interested in, although I do enjoy several of the other magazines as well.
Specifically to Wire, I love how the techniques are graded, but would like to see some intermediate patterns that teach techniques in the more complicated patterns. Some issues I feel left out because I'm beyond the basics but not up to the advanced stuff.
I would also like to see more specifics on certain techniques like soldering and flamework, esp. addressing what specific materials are required and where to find them.
Also, because of the recent flurry of activity regarding copyrights, the proposed Orphan Works Bill and the buying and reselling of items falsely as one's own, I think a good, solid legal section would be very timely. As a non-formally trained artisan, my knowledge of what is acceptable and illegal is mostly gleaned from websites I frequent, and I have to take this with the proverbial grain of salt. It would be terrific to have an article written by an actual copyright attorney or someone else with reliable knowledge of the current laws and the proposed changes as it relates to artisans, especially the self-representing ones.
"Whether you think you can, or think you can't, either way-you are right." --Henry Ford
Thanks so much for your input!
Skill levels are something we're always constantly working on to improve. For instance, some projects initially come in as a level 1 or 2 (beginner to beginner/intermediate) from the author, based on the author's individual experience. But as we're editing, we'll find it might be more advanced, and we also consider the whole reader base...so we may up the level a bit. Same goes for authors who might give their piece a level 5 (advanced)...we always consider what our general reader base will think...and if we don't think it's as advanced, we'll knock the level down a little. We try our best to strike a good balance in every issue.
We're always encouraging people to submit all kinds of projects, including those with soldering and flamework. We always look for more advanced projects, and actively solicit them for the magazine, but we can only work with what is eventually sent to us to publish. That's why we need your help...and that's why this forum could point us to some amazing artists that can submit the projects you're looking for.
Thanks for the feature idea. Copyright issues are very important to us, as most of our editors (including myself) make their own jewelry. In the meantime, Step by Step Beads had an article relating to copyright issues, and they consulted a lawyer for that feature. Check out "Copyrights and Copycats" by Editor-in-Chief Leslie Rogalski in the July-August 2006 issue. Reprints are available by e-mailing firstname.lastname@example.org.
Hope this helps, and thanks again for your comment.
Assistant Editor, Step by Step Wire Jewelry
I'd like to see detailed information on different techniques, such as making and using a drawplate for Viking knit, soldering jumprings closed (as in a chain or making a toggle), annealing wire (when it's necessary, how to do it).
Since many of us aren't metalworkers, and don't have all their tools, it would be very helpful to know what can be done with a small butane torch, a saw and other less specialized tools.
Also, I'd like to learn different techniques and have tutorials on mixing wirework with other media, such as metal clay and sheet metal (basic metalsmithing).
I look forward to expanding my skills with each new issue.
I agree with the above...I'm always looking to expand my knowledge base and I do dabble in wire, but I haven't gotten to anything 'hot' so detailed instructions would be a great help.
The pictures that accompany projects are terrific, btw.
I'm also very intrested in the Viking knit and would love to see a tutorial on this.
I'd love to see an article that really teaches the practical basics of soldering. Too many times, I've seen passing mention of soldering in a project - and they act like you know what kind of solder to use, where to get it, and what to do with it. I've done soldering once, as part of a metalsmithing class, but that was a long time ago, and the instuctor provided all the materials, and we only had one kind of solder to use. I want to know the different types and grades of solder - for example, when do you use 52% silver solder as opposed to 70% silver solder, and when should you use sheet or wire solder?
In general, with all of the projects in the magazines, I'd like to know where to buy the specific "ingredients", especially when there's an unusual finding or focal component.
Actually, I work primarily with craft wire as well (I'm probably Parawire's best customer!)...and I am in the same boat as you are! Luckily, most of the projects you'll see in the magazine can be adapted to use any kind of wire. I totally understand how you'd probably want to make the pieces similar to what you see, but you also can put your own unique spin on it by using colored craft wire.
Also, you may want to pick up our Summer issue (on newsstands on 8/5, but you'll get it in July if you're a subscriber). Our feature focuses on artists who use less expensive (and very unique!) materials in their jewelry. Hopefully you can get some cool ideas from that!
Believe me, we know how tough the economy is right now ...thanks again for sharing your stories and ideas.
Another thing I'd really like to see is a few pages dedicated to what's going on in other countries. I'm from the northeast United States, and I regularly buy Australian and British bead magazines because what seems to be 'hot' or 'in' is often vastly different from what's going on here. I'm always looking for a different idea, technique, material, etc., to spark my interest. I find it fascinating to see what differences-and similarities-there are on a global scale.
I began this hobby 2 years ago upon becoming disabled from my job as an RN. I was and still am excited about your magazine and many others. I had spent all of my free time for years doing numerous crafts including painting, quilting, cross stitch, sewing, crochet and knitting.
I think I consumed enough beads, findings and wires, etc. to fill a 12 x 14 room. Being self taught, I began with simple projects and over that 2 year span I was too overwhelmed with my stock to create anything worthwhile. Oh, but I kept on picking up those little supplies.
One day, I became enthralled with peyote, herringbone and other seed beed projects. After having had a stroke and some hand paralysis, untreateable fibromyalgias including several carpal tunnel and ulnar nerve surgeries I never gave up. The way the beads sit in various pieces remind me of my grandchildren who have also joined the hobby, especially the little boys. My 12 y/o granddaughter could produce at times 12-20 bracelets a day and was fortunate to sell her pieces.
I recently began to retreive your magazine from my hoard of subscriptons more and more frequently. I think it was my urge to begin to crochet and knit again but with wire instead of yarn. I am having some problems as I have only finished my first wire crochet bracelet secondary to my muscle problems. I have faith that the rest will come quickly if you keep feeding me those inspiring designs in your magazine and web site.
I really started this post to comment on Carol's post regarding the "crunch". I was amazed at the materials I continue to find in my stash as I call it. The "crunch" I hope will give many artistic talented beaders out there to "go green". I must comment on the beautiful work you have shared with me and further inspired me to keep on going.
To all of you from a beader in south Louisiana. I hope I have not exceeded my welcome to this board with this lengthy post and hope to continue to receive valuable info from all of you.
Thank you for sharing your inspiring story...to pick up our craft after suffering such pain and to keep at it is really quite amazing. So good to know that you turn to our magazines to help you with your new-found art.
I do a little bit of wire crochet myself, having taken classes from Joan Dulla (a.k.a. the Queen of Wire Crochet). It takes a while to get used to the flow of it, and I struggled a bit at first. (Talk about stress, I was taking a one-on-one class from this renowned artist...it was probably nerves!!!) Once you keep practicing, it'll begin to click...you know how Oprah says she has "lightbulb moments"? That how it came to be for me
I'm very glad you introduced yourself, and have fun on Beading Daily and the boards. You're in good company, as most of us are guilty of being bead and wire hoarders! In the back of my mind I'm always thinking...I should use some of this stuff I have before I make anything else. But then I'll run out of good clasps, and then I'll see some neat spacers, and then I'd forget I need more jump rings...$100 later and the guilt sets in. LOL!
Thanks again for your post!
I like to see more articles about how to make elements in wire. Example: make pendands, wire finish techniques or make clasps. I know the projects incorporate some techniques but I prefer a litle section in that because I can combine diferent techniques for make a unique piece.
We actually include a page that goes over those things called Wire Basics in every issue of the magazine. We have things on how to make your own spiral and S clasps, make bails, different ways to wrap beads, spirals, etc. It has simple images to walk you through the process.
Also, if you're interested in making additional elements, check out our Summer Preview 2007 issue. I believe it's still in print (though it is a big seller), but we can make reprints of articles for a nominal fee. For more information, please contact email@example.com.
Hope this helps!
I just received the Winter 2009 issue ... it's wonderful!
Sophisticated, challenging projects, detailed directions on soldering and drawing a bead on wire, requested techniques such as Viking knit and much more.