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  1. If you are new here, let me introduce myself,  my name is Michelle and I am the owner, creator, designer, photographer, marketer and coffee maker at Michelle's Handcrafted Jewellery and I live on the east coast of England. As a solo business owner, you do get use to multitasking in your business and wearing the all the hats, but you do sometimes dream of one day, having an assistant to help you do some of the work.

    It seems ages since I last wrote a blog post, well actually the last one was in November, which is not great, but I am now turning over a new leaf and going to be doing regular posts. I did have the intention of writing a post on a more frequent basis, but I have been super busy making orders, working on adding new products and all the many elements, that involve running your own business.

    But also having a personal life to throw into the mix and for me, that is my husband, twin sons, who are going off to university this year, so the worry and stress of doing A' level exams, which all adds up.

    Then there is our adorable 2-year-old Black labrador, called Margot who wants my undivided attention all the time and last but not forgotten the 2 cats, who treat the house as a hotel, as you we only see them when they are hungry, or they want a bed for the night, lol.



     So, what have I been doing?

    As I mainly design jewellery for the wedding market, that has kept me occupied, as now wedding season seems to be all year round.  I have noticed an upsurge in enquiries from brides, about colours and designs for wedding jewellery and accessories for themselves and their bridal party.

    One of the areas of my products I expanded on, was to add more personalised items and this is an area I will be expanding on in 2019. I have made lots of wine charms and wedding jewellery, some days my work table can get super untidy, but I always put everything away at the end of the day.

    BLOG PHOTO 30_5_19

    Since I started making jewellery, my jewellery making skills have slowly evolved and being a creative person, you just want to try to make all the things, I have dabbled in wire wrapped jewellery, did a bit with resin and other types of jewellery making.

    Trying Metal Stamping for the first time

    Now I came across this unique jewellery making skill back in 2014 and my husband saw how excited I was about it and bought me my first kit. It was a metal stamping kit and not only did he buy me my first set, he bought me a range of hammers. If you don't know what metal stamping jewellery is, it is striking a thin piece of metal, that has an impression on the end, with a hammer, that will leave an imprint on a shaped flat sheet of metal. The shape could be any shape, there is no limits at the shapes that can be used, for your designs.

    So me being impatient and not doing my research, I tried metal stamping on some blanks I bought off eBay, not knowing that they were stainless steel blanks, which are super hard to stamp. I was really annoyed that I could not stamp them properly, there was barely an impression and what I had stamped, looked nothing like the images that I had seen on Pinterest. So I just gave up and put my little stamping kit away and never picked them up again.

    blog photo-2


    But early this year I just wanted to try again and this time I have made sure to seek tutorials and websites that teach me how to metal stamp and I have learnt so much, but the more I learn, the more I became excited about all the things I wanted to make.

    I have learnt if you want to learn how to do something, you need to put the work in and surround yourself with those who have done it before you. I have joined several groups online, full of amazing talented metal stamper's whose work is stunning to look at and they all say the same thing, that you need to practice, practice and practice!

     hand covered in aluminium


    I am still practising, learning and trying every day and I absolutely love it. It is a bit of a learning curve, but it does not put me off. I have already made some cuff bracelets, necklaces and keying.

    What I have made so far...

    This is one of the necklace that I have made, I made it for my son.  I think I did an ok job, if I must say so, what do you think? Please excuse the grubby hands, sanding and polishing the blanks can sometimes really messy, but that does not bother me at all.




    I do think it is good to try new things and try to improve your skills. I am always willing to give anything a go, one new skill in jewellery making that I am hoping to try in the future is Silversmithing.  I would love to make a ring and be able to add a gorgeous diamond into it!

    I don't know about you, but every day have so many ideas bouncing around in your head, so what I try to do, is write them down into a notebook, or write it down on a sticky note, so that I don’t lose the idea.

    I have made lots of new metal stamped jewellery and accessories and have been slowly adding to my website. Click the link here to take a closer look, at some of my pieces

    This is one of the cuff bracelets that I have made. I think it is my favourite of what I have made so far. The first cuff bracelets I made were not so great, I have kept them as a reminder, of how I am progressing. One thing I know, practice does makes perfect and I feel I am getting better, every time I make one of them. 


    blog photo


    I have also tried my hand at making personalised hand stamped cufflinks, wine charms, key rings, bottle openers and even guitar pick, for my son’s 18th birthday, which he loved.

    Father's Day Gifts

    Once Father's Day has passed, I will be adding these new products to my website and working on making Teacher's Gift, as the end of the summer term is not far away. Once they have been made, I will be sharing the new additions in future blog posts.

    At the moment, I am making and adding new products for Father’s Day, which is around the corner on Sunday 16th June. Sometimes it's hard buying gift for someone, but buying a personalised gift, might make it easier, because you can make it personal to them, which makes the gift really thoughtful and special.

    Customers have already started placing orders with me, so if you have your eye on something that you have seen, best to order it early so that it can be made for you and arrive on time.

    I have created Father’s Day section on my website, please feel free to head over there and have a look. Just click the link to my website at you might see something that would be just right for your dad, or the father figure in your life.

    Have you tried to learn a new skill  in your business or personal life and are you enjoying it? 

    Leave a comment below, I would love to hear about it.

    Now I am going to get back to work and wrap up some Father’s Day orders, if you have any questions, about anything you have seen, contact me at [email protected]

    And if you want to save 15% on your first order and find out about new products, secret discount codes and much more, then sign up to my email list

    Bye for now.

    Michelle x 


  2. We are up to weeks 3 of the challenge and I thought I would merge week 3 and 4, as I felt it would be easier for you to read both weeks in one sitting.

    It's week 3 of the challenge and I am not feeling apprehensive about posting this week. I am a bit of a planner person, so I have already jotted down the ideas for the coming week's posts, but I have not created them yet. Sometimes it is ok to be spontaneous and not over think things and plan every single step.

    Day 15 of the challenge is Boomerang

    If you don't know what Boomerang is, it's a feature on Instagram, which allows you to show a mini video, which is on a loop, so the image repeats it's self. I use boomerang quite often in my Instagram stories, to me it's a bit of fun and it can enhance the way you share, what you are doing or making and it is more eye-catching, than a straight forward post.

    Day 16 of the challenge is Helper

    I am a solo business owner, but I do have someone who sometimes keeps me company and her name is Margot. She is a loveable black labrador, who loves going for walks, eating carrots and bananas and especially diving into the sea, if we take her to the beach. Sometimes I think I have had another baby, when it comes to all the attention she wants from me, but I love her to bits. I let you into a little secret, Margot has her own Instagram account, she has 325 followers at the moment and doesn’t mind having her photo taken, lol



    Day 17 of the challenge is customers and feedback 

    I still get excited every time I receive an order, also receiving feedback and a review from my customers is so amazing, I appreciate that they took the time to do it and it lets me know if I am doing everything right and where I can improve. I am always thinking of ways to give my customers an experience that they will remember. I am lucky to have amazing customers and I want to thank them all, for choosing my business, out of all the other businesses out there.

    This is a review left by a customer, on my Etsy shop. 


    Day 18 of the challenge is Inspiration

    This is a hard one for me, as it comes to me in many different ways. It could be reading a passage in a book, listening to a podcast or simply walking to the post office, to post some orders. I have been in the queue at the post office and an idea will pop into my head and I will quickly make a note of it on my phone. Walking the dog and being outside in nature gives me inspiration, I like to take in my surroundings and just walk and think about colours and sounds that I see and hear. My customers inspire me sometimes. It might be something they have said or ask for and that will set me off. I do walk around with a notebook, to capture any ideas that I have and I make sure I write it down, before I forget them. 


    Day 19 is Can't live without...

    Well I can’t live with out pen and paper. I am always writing something down, in a diary, notebook or journal. My brain finds it hard to store all the information I have buzzing around it, so I need to get it out of my head and onto paper. Ideas pop in my head all the time and I hate to forget things.I think this is why I love buying stationery so much, at the moment I have over 10 notebooks, which I use frequently, for different things. This notebook is a new addition and I keep it in my handbag, has anyone else got a serious stationery addiction, lol?



    Day 20 is Tools and Materials

    This is a small group of the tools I use everyday to make my jewellery. I do have lots of beads, such as pearls, crystals, semi precious gemstones, 

    jewellery making tools and materials



    Day 21 is Stories 

    A day in the life.... Well I did not prep for this, so I have no stories to share yet, but I will be updating my stories through out the day. Anyway I start my day at 5am, I then journal in my lovely notebook, exercise, take the dog for a walk and tidy the house, do any chores or a made dash to the supermarket, if needed and then a start work in my work studio at 9am, I have made this a rule and it seems to be working.


    Notebook journal



    Day 22 is Sketchbook and Lists

    This is my new sketchbook, I bought it a few weeks ago and will be working in it in the next few days, as I am working on a few new projects. I did say before that I was a stationery addict and the cover grabbed my attention. I am a serial list maker, I am always making one. I am looking forward to filling this notebook with lots of new designs.


    My sketchbook


    Day 23 of is Hands 

    There is a post on day 23 on my Instagram page, which shows a video of myself making an order of wine charms. I am seen placing them onto a card and popping them into an organza gift bag. If I had remembered that it was hands today, I would of got myself a manicure. 


    Day 24 of the challenge is Achievements 

    This map of the world is on the wall in my work studio and it reminds me of all the countries around the world, that I have sold to and how lucky I am to have the nicest customers. I have sold my jewellery and accessories to far away places such as Alaska, Hawaii, Japan and even Timbuktu, which I have to admit, I did not know was a real place. I feel that I achieved so much since I started this business, I have learnt new skills mentally and physically and I am still learning every day. I think you should never stop learning, if there is something you want to learn how to do, go and find a way.



    Day 25 of the challenge is 'being a maker means'...

    That I am able to work from home and be around my family and I feel really lucky to be in this position. I am always exploring and trying new ideas and there are projects that I cannot make at the moment, but I will one day. You don’t just create with your hands, you create with your mind. I am no longer afraid to try something, it might work or it might not, but at least I tried. 




    Day 26 of the challenge is Books, Blogs and Podcasts

    I love reading books, when I was little I looked forward to going to the library and I would devour every book I could get my hands on. Back then it was mainly fiction books, but now it’s books about business and personal development. My favourite book out of all these is The Miracle Morning, it has changed my morning routine forever. Podcasts - I discovered podcasts about 3 years ago and they are my ‘on the go’ way of learning. I listen to them while I am working, doing housework, e.t.c. At the moment I am listening to @flourish_thrive @createandthrive@creativebizrebellion @mumswithhustle these are just a few that I listen to on a regular basis. Blogs- I don’t really read blogs, if I come across one that I am interested in, I will read the post, but I don’t really subscribe to any of them




    Day 27 of the challenge is Recommend a Maker

    There are lots of makers whose work I admire, but this lady stops me scrolling, whenever I see her work in my timeline. I first started seeing this maker on Twitter, I was amazed at her creations and I think she is mega talented. It is the lovely Clair from@twystedroots you must check out her page and you will see what I have been raving about, also I do want to include my other favourite folks, whose work I admire and are really talented and nice people  Sue from @yujuuk Amy from @cookie.delicious and Charlotte from @stanleyandmaud




    Day 28 of is Organised

    Running your own business teaches you that you need to be organised, whether it is planning out your goals for the next week, month or year. When it comes to packaging my orders, I need to order supplies in advance, because the last thing I need to do is run out of padded envelopes. The envelopes are stashed under my work table and I buy these in bulk. Luckily for me, there are several shops near where I live, who stock these envelopes, so if a delivery is severely delayed, then it’s a made dash to the shops. I also have a massive role of bubble wrap that I bought a few years ago and it is only started to shrink. If I am not organised, I will spend the whole day chasing my tail!




    Day 29 of is Community

    I don’t do craft fairs and I am not part of any local craft groups as there don’t seem to be any in my neck of the woods. I am a member of several online Facebook groups and they are all very supportive, sharing tips information and advice. This challenge has given me the chance to be part of a community of talented makers, who I might have not discovered if I had not taken part. I am so glad I did take part. We have one more day tomorrow and I have to say I will miss doing it. 



    Day 30 of is Top/Tip and advice

    This is a picture of a quote I keep in my work studio and I look at it every day. It’s the title of a book by Susan Jeffers and I read this book when I felt I was lacking in confidence. After reading it, it somehow gave me the strength to challenge myself and do things I was afraid of doing. So when I have to do something that makes me want to run in the other direction, I think of this quote and I get on with it. This is what you have to do, don’t run away, face what life throws at you head on, half the time, it is never as bad as you think it would be. 




    Day 31 of  the challenge is about Creative Friends

    I have connected with lots talented crafters, who understand what it means to be one and it was really fun doing this challenge. â €
    In the beginning, I was not sure if I would stick to it, but I was determined to see it through. It made me accountable and I knew I had to and wanted to show up every day. I want to say a big thank you to @joannehawker for creating this challenge and I am already looking forward to the next one.



     Bye for now. x