Thursday, March 19, 2015

Part Three: Build A Line Challenge from B'Sue Boutiques; Leila West of Leila Nicole Designs

Welcome welcome.

Well here we are after 3 months, our challenge now coming to a close.  If you're new here and wondering what this challenge is about, it was a 3 month class hosted by Brenda of B'sue Boutiques where we learned the ins and outs of creating a cohesive jewelry line, how to bring it together, why we should pay attention to fashion and much more.  We got to learn in a relaxed environment, had nearly daily discussions, many points of view, and all in all a great time learning from one another.  I thank Brenda and the 55 participants for this course and am grateful I was able to participate.

At the start of this challenge I had a decent idea of creating a line of jewelry, however what I was doing wasn't really a collection, I don't think.  I've shared these pieces before, but these were my tester lines where I offered options to customers at the small shows I did towards the end of 2014.

They are great "mini" lines that offer the customer options and I intend to continue with them.  However this challenge helped me focus on building an actual collection.  From the statement piece, the simpler less expensive necklaces, the bracelet, ring and earring.  I seem to be on a spring flower kick lately, it seems to be what sells in my area, so that is what I chose to do for my collection....with a twist.  I added stamped solder into the mix.  I had a hunch there wouldn't be many doing this so I went with it and named it the Gilded Rose collection.  If you're curious why this name, please head over to Part One to see how I came up with the name.

Now as far as this challenge went for me, I learned a couple major things about myself.  The first being that I get bored pretty easily (which my husband ever so kindly pointed out).  3 months of primarily working on this challenge and I wanted to scream.  I can stay focused, but the boredom kicks in, I get agitated, my mind wanders, and I want to go do something else.  Mind you, I work full time to pay the bills and have 2 young boys and a husband that works at least 80hrs a week, so my creative play time is limited.  When I look around at my half finished pieces it puts it in to perspective for me, this explains why I can't seem to finish a lot of my pieces, haha.  Thats actually why the B'sue Boutiques Creative Group weekly challenges are PERFECT for me.  I share my work table Wed and I finish up and share on Friday.  A week long, no real long commitment, and the bonus is I have a finished piece that I can now list or add to my craft show pile.  So the idea of a challenge that required a 3 month commitment, I'll admit it did intimidate me at first.  I wasn't sure what to expect, but my stubbornness kicked in and I dove in head first into this challenge.  Now, to spend every waking second on my challenge pieces was a bit of a wake up call that I had to break it up and allow myself some creative play time to make what I was doing feel less like a task.  This realization is important for me should I pursue going wholesale.  I would need to be able to break it up into sections, work on a set amount of pieces for whatever deadlines and allow creative breaks in between to help ease the boredom.

The second major thing I learned within this class was how wholesale actually worked.  The general rule of thumb, so to speak, in what a wholesale account would expect as far as a "discount" from my retail price.  So this put my pricing into perspective for me....and realizing I'm doing it wrong.  My mom had already commented that my prices in my Etsy shop were basically already wholesale.  So to take that price and have to offer a discount to an actual wholesale account really wouldn't be worth it to me.  So I will have to take some time after the close of this challenge to re-evaluate my shop and my prices and really be fair to myself, my designs, and my skills.

So I am grateful to have been a part of this challenge because these realizations have put me on a path to get closer to the goals I am trying to reach.  To one day quit my job and do something I actually love for a change.

So enough of my ramblings, you came here to see the final reveal.  Pictures you want and pictures you shall receive.

Here is my line, I have a statement piece, 2 lower priced necklaces, a bracelet, a ring, and earrings to match.  I did an orange set, a pink set, a green set, a blue set, and a purple set.  I am only sharing 4 however because the 5th set I am planning to submit to a magazine....wish me luck in getting published!

The Orange set (click on the image if you would like to see larger):

The Pink set (click on the image if you would like to see larger):

The Green set (click on the image if you would like to see larger):

The Blue set (click on the image if you would like to see larger):

As you can see, I took a lot of pictures, so I do apologize if I crashed your computer, but I was excited to share all my pieces.  :-)

....and I have more.  These are not part of my Gilded Rose collection, but they are a spring flower line I worked on when I needed a break from the challenge.  Working on these pieces gave me the extra "oomph" to find my second wind to finish out the challenge and cross that finish line.  So here is what I made to distract me.

So all in all, this challenge has been a wonderful process and experience.  I learned quite a bit and at the end of it all I have a ton of pieces to take with me to my April craft show.  And of course, after the show, I plan to revamp my shop and focus on listing EVERYTHING left.  That's my new goal now.  LOL!  I have 60 items in my shop and I'm pretty sure I have been sitting on about 60 pieces that need pictures and listings.   Oy!  I really need an unpaid intern because that is seriously the biggest dreaded process for me. After siting 8-10hrs on a computer at work the last thing I want to do is sit and work on listings...but it must be done!

So before I end my incredibly long post (I'm sorry for hogging you!) I will leave you with just a few more pictures.  My Gilded Rose collections, together, for visual impact.  Thank you so much for taking the time to read, please leave me a comment on what you think.  Happy Friday, Happy Weekend.  Happy Naptime!

The Blog Hop starts here.  Please check out all these talented designers and don't forget to leave a comment and let us know you visited.  Happy Reading!

Brenda Sue Lansdowne, B'sue Boutiques
Marcia Tuzzolino
Jann Tague
Judy King
Linzi Alford
Cynthia Wainscott
Carole Carlson
Lynn Stinten
Marica Zammit
Catherine Shattuck
Michaele Collie
Mary Craig
Lee Koopman
Erin Whitacre
Monica Casady
Leila West
Cindy Peterson
Leila Belcher
Gloria Allen
Pamela Anger
Tammy Adams
Lynda O'Mara
Elizabeth Hildreth
Dana Hickey
Janet Calardo
Maria Clark
Lori Beekman
Jennifer Kroeger
Amy Jorgensen
Robin Reed
Ingrid Anderson
Louise O'Shields
Susan Killam
Mary Katherine Deis
Nike Bottalico
Susan Bowerman
Kristy Le
Jan Peters
Mitzie Crider
Gina Hockett
Linda Anderson
Alexandra Sefton
Melida Boman
Teresa Shurter
Melissa Latimer
Renee Hong
Nadine Edris
Lori Meyer
Jennifer Merrill Williams
Denise Lussier Poirier
Renee Allen
Autumn Adams
Elizabeth Owens
Kat BarronMiller
Sandra Ballard
Coral Law


  1. Leila, this line is stunning! I really enjoyed the pictures you posted to the group, but seeing the line completed . . .just wow! You were born to make jewelry! ~Melissa

  2. WOW! Your line is gorgeous. And your "distractions" are gorgeous too :-)

    I so enjoyed reading your post. I sure hope that you will find a way to work around your "getting bored quickly" issue. Your lines are fabulous and it would be a pity if you stopped making them.

    I think that if you have various lines going on, you can take a break from one when you need to make something new and go work on the other one :-)

    I especially love your rings. They're fabulous. And I also want your hand display LOL Looks very realistic, unlike the anorexic one I have lol

    All the best with your lines. You did a wonderful wonderful job!

    Marica xx

  3. Leila this is amazing. You have a collection that is ready to go wholesale as well as retail as soon as you get pricing worked out. You can do this! You are a bonafide jewelry designer. A+++++

  4. Leila, everything from the design, technique, photographs and presentation are top rate! I really like the orange set. Your pieces are all gorgeous! They have a nice vintage flair to them! Congratulations on finishing it all up, and you'll have them all listed before you know it. Just make a basic template, and use the "copy" listing feature. I bet you'll be able to quit your day job and be featured in an Etsy interview in the near future!

  5. Lovely job Leila! I always loved your coloring and your processes of doing your jewelry lines. Proud to be one of your creative peeps in Creative Group!

  6. They're beautiful! Be proud of yourself! The blue with the crystal drop - gorgeous! I',m glad you went with the wood, it suits them well.

  7. Leila, I have loved watching your journey with this line. It is beautiful and cohesive. You created some wonderful jewelry. I love the photos with your backdrop as well. BRAVO!!!!

  8. Leila, you nailed this challenge. Your pieces are lovely and I enjoyed the insights you shared in your blog. Very nice work!

  9. Leila what a great line. Your pieces individually are great and collectivelywork very well together.

  10. Very pretty. The orange is amazing. I am a huge fan of your work.

  11. I am so glad you shared how your process worked which gives me a better idea how to work efficiently. And I love your incredible colors on your line. I've learned a lot by watching your process

  12. Such beautiful colors and flowers! Great cohesive line!

  13. I'm going to take a break from my line and start working on something else .. I will go back to my Adventures In The Sea in a couple of weeks .. maybe you should try this .. your jewelry is over the top beautiful Leila .. I love the Cuffs the best .. :-)

  14. Such a cohesive line with beautiful subtle coloring. Love all the pieces. Such a privilege to work with you and the other artists during this challenge. Good luck to you.

  15. Your colour palettes have come together nicely to create a great line

  16. Oh your line came together so well, the colors are done tastefully and looks to be very marketable. Congrats on finishing up~! xXx Ne

  17. I have limited creative play time as well but you did much better than me. The whole collection is very cohesive. I can see customers attracted to your booth to look closely at the flowers. I found the flowers for each level across different color lines are different but they are cohesive. A great job. Congrats.

  18. Wow! Congrats on a beautiful and cohesive line! The colors are stunning, each piece compliments the other coordinated pieces. Just lovely!

  19. Wow, you have created such beautiful jewelry, you have really been busy! I loved your blog, I am the same way I get very bored, and already have a new idea in my head before I finish what I've been working on.. I have learned so much from ya'll, Brenda has been so kind to share her wealth of knowledge with all of us. I do believe you got the idea, and you are going to have a very nice line of jewelry.

  20. What an outstanding line of gorgeous jewels I loved your color pallet and how you had a different one for each line. also your pictures were just perfection, so professional. Loveeeeeeeeee it!

  21. Love the colors! Especially the mix of metals-that's wonderful. Now get busy and go rework your prices in your shop. You are a talented creative artist-don't go giving away your work! I may come back and haunt you about this!!!!
    Stylized Vintage

  22. Leila, your line/collection is outstanding!! You've created such beautiful pieces and the colors are great. The stamped solder in the background is such a great detail. Loved your blog post and how you displayed your creations. So happy I could take this journey with you.

  23. Gorgeous Work! I knew I'd be in for a treat reading your blog and seeing your work! Awesome and I love how you work and play! You inspire! Well done, so glad to be in this class with you!

  24. You knocked this one out of the park, my friend!!!! Just so beautifully done and a true design line.

  25. I love the look of your line. The florals are really neat and love the little details you added to them. You have a really cohesive line. Great to be on the journey with you !

  26. I love the look of your line. The florals are really neat and love the little details you added to them. You have a really cohesive line. Great to be on the journey with you !

  27. There is an obvious style to the way you colorize components and combine them. Even the pieces you say are not part of this line are still definitely part of your collection. Really beautiful work.

  28. Lelia you rocked this challenge good!!!! Now let me get right to the point. I am screaming over those rings wooo hoooo they are all day awesome. All of your pieces have such brilliant colors and your work for detail is just outstanding. Thank you so much for so much of your support during this entire adventure and I am so glad to be right here with you!!! ~Louise

  29. Awesome collection, as always you rock.

  30. I love the coordination of colors and also the contrast of metals within each piece. You line shows deliberate planning in making sure that your signature is in the design of your work. Your talent lies in creating a range of lovely items that can work alone or in groups. You give the customer an opportunity to select what speaks to them and enhances their personality. You hear that a person is "well put together." That means that their outfit and accessories coordinate and make a statement about who the person is. You give customers options to be individuals that are "well put together."

  31. Leila - you have done such a beautiful job on your new line! During this challenge I've been incredibly impressed with your work ethic. I am confident you will have great success!


  32. Superb work Leila!
    I don't know how you can do it all, but you surely do it very well!
    I love your finished sets and I'm so glad you "Gilded the Rose." Solder embossing is a technique that fascinates me - I've collected a bunch of stamps and copper blanks to work with, but my skills aren't quite there yet. Someday!
    For now, I'll enjoy the art vicariously through your work & cheer you on. I hope you get published, you deserve it, so if you need votes, let me know, I can get four for you! :) Until then, Thanks for all you've done!

  33. Wonderful pieces, Leila! You really made an awesome line, and I know you'll be able to really run with it! I hear you about the bored thing ... I can get like that too. I'm wishing you the best in getting published, and it's been great to be in the challenge with you! <3

  34. What an amazing line!!! Beautiful colors and designs!!! It is very cohesive but also very individual! Great Work! This has been such a great journey with you!!! Be Blessed!

  35. Leila, you never cease to bowl me over with, not only your gorgeous pieces, but the way you manage your time to create such amazing numbers of pieces. You have a great line and I have no doubt you'll do very well at your April show.

  36. Leila, you are well on your way! Your colors and designs are lovely and so well coordinated. I think the combination of your obvious design talent and determination will take you far! Congratulations.

  37. for someone who gets bored easy and has no time, you sure did a bunch of stuff!! I really understand where you are coming from, there just aren't enough hours in the day!! But you did good, and you are still setting goals ( like getting your etsy full) so you have made that commitment, good job!

  38. Fabulous job, Leila!! Very cohesive line and fab colors! :)

  39. BTW--love your etsy shop with the altered art/mixed media pieces! Your line is gorgeous! All the wonderful colors and metal colors too--really like how the same pieces can be different. Great way to offer choices. And I enjoyed reading your blog--you are one busy lady!

  40. Leila-Great, information filled blog! I love the way all of your sets have matching colors for each piece. And, your coloring is really great. I've been watching your posts for awhile and love the way you can make simple stampings into great sellers! Congratulations!

  41. Thank you everyone for the kind comments! I'm excited to see where this line takes me!

  42. Leila, I have just discovered the world of B'SUE and it's exciting. Your pieces are lovely. Congratulations. I am in awe of your multitasking. Mom, wife, professional, artist...each a full time gig. Best of luck to you with your beautiful jewelry. Charlotte


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