Recently an Etsy seller wanted opinions on her store the first thing I noticed was the dark grey photos that hid her detailed work. Most home based jewelery (or anyhome based product people really) will shoot their items on site i.e. their homes and sometimes those photos can show it they're dark, too blue, or the lighting makes the end product fuzzy. While I'm by no means a professional photographer I've been shooting my own work for 2 years now and I wanted to pass along a very easy tip on how to give your photos a more catalog friendly appearance like this:
A crisp white background can be hard if you don't have a light box and really great lighting and defusing. So for an easy and professional shot like above you'll need a white background like scrapbooking paper or a clean press fabric. The best form of light is natural so if you can go outside if you can't get close to a window. Make sure the light you pick isn't direct bright sunlight it'll washout your item! You do however want the sun to be close to that part of the home. I also recommend turning out all artificial light to maximize your light exposure and remove your curtains from the window or pull your blinds way up. Set your camera to indoor lighting.
Now lay your item out attractively and get in close for those details! After which load your pictures onto your laptop and begin editing if your editing software allows you to control temperature of the image do so warm it up enough so it'll give your photo some blood but not so much it looks blazing hot. Using the brightness setting here helps too you want to brighten up the photo so it's as light as it can be before loading it into a program like photoshop.
Now load your imagine into photoshop go under the image tab select adjustments and then scroll down to selective color. This box is where you tell the software focus on this color and fix it. In the color select screen select white then begin to take down the numbers in most of my items I can get away with -100 on everything. Cyan should always be -100 this really helps to get rid of the natural in home blue that cameras shooting on indoor settings get.
Now you can see the above image still has a bit of darkness to it but we can fix that! Go to the image tab again, adjustments and go to brighten/contrast. Use your eyes on this one brighten it so the dull goes away but not so bright it washes out your item! Contrast in low doses can be used to make your item stand out and then you're done! It takes a bit longer with editing but the end result can be very nice!
About this project: I love the color red and sense spring is comming I get the urge to make spring related home accents so I've found a fairly inexpensive way to bring spring indoors without the bees!
1. Gather all materials. Your dish for this project should be less then 1inch depth so the machete puff ball fits nicely inside. I found this gorgeous porcelain decor dish.
2. Cut the ribbon off of the decor puff this will be the bottom of your piece. I recommend you place the puff ball into your dish so as you add the mini roses you can see exactly where they're going. This helped me when doing this project so the crown spokes wouldn't cover up my pretty roses.
3. Using the Fabri-Tac glue begin to add your mini roses in a random order, you don't want them to be in a line because it looks unnatural. Press them gently into the mache leaves but not shove them so deep the leaves have to form around them.
4. THIS STEP IS OPTIONAL! If you do not wish to add chain please skip to #5. This is for a fun add in that I discovered when making this project. To give it a really unique and fun look you can add chain through the openings in the crown top. To do so find a medium chain and carefully weave it through I used about 9 inches. Once the chain has been completely woven through the holes connect both ends securely to one another with jewelry pliers. The look you will make is the chain will swoop on the outside. Very cute indeed but I decided at the last moment to not do it for this project.
5. Now for both chain adders and non chain adders please fallow from here on: Using the jewel it! or similar gem holding glue begin to attach all rhinestones making sure they're even spaced I used 8 large and 8 very minis for this project but feel free to size them as you like. Let the base set for 30 - 60 minutes so the gems hold fast.
Please note if you're using a porcelain base like me the gems will want to slid down for about a minute or so just keep an eye on any movers so your gems all stay in a neat and orderly fashion. After a moment to set they should stop wanting to move.
6. For the last step. This one is simi an option if you want to be able to interchange push types don't glue if you want the bush to be a permanent showpiece use your fabri-tac glue and glue the bottom of the machete bush and place into the bejeweled dish. Use a little bit of weight to push the bush down into the dish for at least 60 minutes so the bush adheres to the dish bottom. I used a poly clay brick and three dominoes the wight doesn't have to be strong just mild. Let all items cure overnight and you're done with a brilliant beautiful decor accent the next day!
About this project: I was walking in the store one day and saw these beautiful ribbon and bead necklaces and instantly became fascinated with how to construct one! I thought wouldn’t that make a lovely bracelet but as I scoward the store jewelry department I found none so I decided to make one for me which in turn I decided why notmake this into a tutorial? So after several tries I’ve finally gotten it right and so I now pass it on to you! The great thing I learned about making these little wonders is that they can be made to match anything! You can even use pattern ribbon, different sized beads, and this design can later be extended to not only bracelets and necklaces but also headbands! So try out my tutorial then go wild with the possibilities!
What you’ll need:
Ribbon 5/8” any color – You will need about 50 inches worth
Large 11 inch round pearls – you will need approx 14
Step 1: Gather all materials and cut the ribbon to 50 inches it may seem large right now but it will shrink to be approx 31inches when we’re all done!
Step 2: You want to leave a good amount of space to start with this large gap will be the first end of the tie on I left 14.5 inches before I even began to sew! So get a nice amount of thread more then you think you will need I just put it in my hand and spun in around twice and cut it that worked well for this project make sure to make it double thick and tie end off. This will give more strength to the thread sense this is all that is supporting the construction!
After 14.5 inches place ribbon right (shinny) side down insert thread you want to do as the photo shows and just push the needle at three different intervals this will make the beginning of the bracelet portion if you mess up just carefully pull the thread backwards and gently ease the needle out backwards through the ribbon.
Once you thread it as shown hold the thread and gently scrunch the ribbon back towards your starting knot. It should scrunch as shown. Now thread the needle through the pearl and push that up against the ribbon.
Step 3: Now that you’re fist pearl is in place this also marks the bracelet band portion make sure to push the pearl back into the scrunched fabric, hold it in place and put your needle right in front of it as close to the bead as possible push it straight through then move make the next insertion do so about 1.5inches away from the bead so the thread peaks out as shown then gently scrunch this back towards the pearl you will make another ribbon mountain and you should have the ribbon peak be over the pearl.
The pearl in-between both portions of scrunched fabric should look like its resting in a valley with two even ribbon mountains on either side of it you want your ribbon to look even. It is at this time you may want to use the painters tape to tape down the starting side of your design so it does not move I notice the design will want to move and twist as I’m working on it just keep your design straight and have patience. Continue to add pearls and scrunch the ribbon until you reach 7 inches.
Step 4: (7 inches in the standard bracelet size and fist most wrist but the tie on process also allows for larger wrist to wear it my sister is a size 8 and it fit her just as well as my size 7!) So once you have added you’re final bead you want to make the last 1.5inch sew through however just like you started you want to add on just a little second sew point now scrunch this together and it should look like your starting point knot area. Now you want to make sure the design is tight and secure before proceeding.
Take the thread around the right side (shinny side) of ribbon reinsert thread and needle on right side of fabric through the hole of the bead and pull through this will stop the original thread from letting the design slide on the line do this twice to make it secure then insert thread and needle through the right side over flap of ribbon as shown in photo this will let you now reverse thread the design back towards your starting point knot.
Step 5: Taking two or three pearls at a time reverse thread back through your work be careful not to pull on any of the pearls or your design may become loose! I would reverse thread through three pearls and pull the needle through like photos show before going into the fourth pearl. Gently pull the thread through so it is fallowing you put do not pull tightly just yet! About half way through rethreading your work untape the start side so it can move freely it helps as you get closer to the end.
Once your needle as come out the start knot side pull design tight and as you did in the end of the design bring the thread and needle through the right side of the fabric insert into pearl and pull tight after that tie off your thread for good and cut it. You have now finished the bracelet band of the design!
6. Now to finish the tie on portion of the design! You may notice one side of the ribbon is longer then the other which is ok just take the shorter portion and use that against the longer version trim the longest portion to match the shorter for even ties.
Use the optional Fray Check on the cut ends of the ribbon this dries within minuets and prevents fraying of fabric and ribbon. Using thread and needle once more fold over ribbon fabric and hand sew a straight double stitch then fold once more so original cut becomes hidden and now only a smooth edge is present hand sew a double stitch here too then tie off and cut.
Congratulations you’re unique beaded bracelet is done! Thanks so much for reading my tutorial I hope you make many great items with this!
Shamble Ramble Presents: How to make beautiful two tone cluster earrings!
About this project: Making unique earrings can be fun and easy! The cluster bead can be two tone like we’re doing today or all one tone the key is to very the bead’s sizes. Once you do this project try making more using other beads you may have collected and make it all your own!
What you’ll need to make a set of clustered beaded earrings:
10pcs - 5.5mm round pearl beads
2pcs - 14mm round pearl beads
10pcs - 5mm round gold dust beads
12pcs - 3.5mm round pearl beads
12pcs pin head (flat bottom) spinners gold
1 set of Lever back or French hook earring hooks gold
Step 1: Collect all tools, beads, and wire in one easy to find place, Start by placing an optional mini bead cap onto one pin head spinner then place the largest pearl bead ontop of that and set aside.
Step 2: Begin spinning your first earring using five 5.5mm pearls. Spin all five of them on 5 pin head spinners. Make sure you end the wire close to all the pearls so they do not slide in and out as you wear them a secure spin means a secure bead. After you spin all 5 of this type add them ontop of the large 14mm pearl bead. All 5 will lay straight once properly aligned ontop of the larger bead and cap.
Step 3: Spin five of the gold dust beads like you did in step 2 and add them ontop of the 5.5mm pearls they too will lay flat once properly aligned.
Step 4: Spin only five of six 4.5mm pearls onto pin head spinners and add them ontop of the gold glitter beads. Now add the sixth 4.5mm pearl ontop of the others to act as a stopper so the beads don’t move up and down then spin main pin head closed.
Step 5 : Add a jump ring to the end and connect one earring hook do a second cluster creation like this one and you’ve got you’re set! These make great fashion earrings for both yourself and as gifts for friends and family so create a storm and have fun!