Is Jewelry Making a Glamorous Occupation?

Wearing jewelry may be glamorous, but making it – I think not.  Jewelry making is my forte, and I can’t think of many things I enjoy doing more, but it’s a rather dirty business with all the sanding, filing, grinding, torching, etc., one does to arrive at a finished product.  Safety is an important issue and not to be taken lightly.  Good ventilation is a must and wearing a dust mask is necessary whenever fine particles could be inhaled.  Shown here, I’m at the bench filing Faux Bone™ which comes in sheet form and goes through many steps to become a finished product.   Sawing, filing,  sanding, texturing, stamping, drilling, adding color, and buffing are the steps that go into my finished Faux Bone™ bangles and rings.  The gear I wear doesn’t start and end with an apron and face mask.  Depending on the materials I’m working with, goggles, safety glasses, or full face hoods  may be in order.  And it’s important to tie long hair back or wear it up – having it caught in a buffing wheel at a high rpm would be devastating!  So, when you look at a one-of-a-kind finished piece of jewelry, what goes into the price point is not just cost of materials and overhead, but many laborious steps. And wearing a lot of uncomfortable gear!

~ by BarbaraBriggsDesigns on September 29, 2010.

2 Responses to “Is Jewelry Making a Glamorous Occupation?”

  1. Hi Barbara.
    I’m always happy to hear (or read, as the case may be) people talking about safety and PPE. Making jewelry is a lot of fun, but can be a hazardous enterprise! It’s up to us analyze the potential hazards (impact, inhalation, skin absorption,etc.) and to make sure that we’re using the right PPE for the job. Thanks for posting the reminder.

    • It’s so important to remember that our lungs are precious and must last a lifetime. We cannot afford to be cavalier when it comes to inhaling potentially harmful and toxic fumes, micro-particles, and the like.

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