Monday, March 19, 2012

Jewelry Making Techniques - Design Principles

Making jewelry is more than just putting together pretty stones and tying them together.  Professionals like to use the word principle - as in the principles of design, principles of wearability, and principles of balance.

Personally, when I first sit down to make or design a piece of jewelry, I think about color, patterns, and what kind of patinas (or colors that highlight said pattern) and the bling factor.  Only when I am in 'debugging' mode do I remember the principles of mechanics, wearability, and balance.

I'm sure I'm not alone in this.  How many of us design and create a ring and never remember about the principle of wearability until the ring pokes us in the finger?

To make appealing pieces, it's important to consider certain factors, including:

  • How do elements combine - consider how colors flow together, how are the elements of the piece connected and joined (the cleaner, the better)?  Always look for a better way to set, hang, pierce, or bezel your creations.
  • How do your pieces move? Learn how to bring movement, connection, longevity, and presentation into your design.  When you sketch, focus on the areas of joinery or engineering that can improve movement and the overall structure of your finished piece.
Your finished pieces are usually an illustration of your initial design concepts concerning movement, structure, or an improvement on a common theme.

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