halsteadbead

Posts Tagged ‘small business’

The Halstead Grant 2011 Application Now Available

In Jewelry Business Grant, Jewelry Business Topics, Uncategorized on October 28, 2010 at 4:33 pm

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Are you starting a jewelry business? Do you have what it takes to be one of the next big names in jewelry design? We are excited to launch the application for the next Halstead Grant for new jew

elry designers in the bridge segment. The  deadline is June 6, 2011. Download the application now and start thinking about your business plan and jewelry submissions. This is an amazing opportunity for a $6,000 grant award plus publicity and recognition in the industry. This will be our 6th annual competition. Visit The Halstead Grant website for details on the award as well as past winners & finalists. Please spread the word!

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Cowboy’s Sweetheart Jewelry Wins National Award & Business Grant

In indie jewelry, Jewelry Business Grant, silver jewelry on August 11, 2010 at 9:14 am
Cowboy's Sweetheart Jewelry

Western Jewelry for the American Cowgirl

Western jewelry designer Amy Fortunato of Cowboy’s Sweetheart rounded up top honors in the 2010 Jewelry Design Business Development Grant competition. Her prize package includes $6,000 in cash and jewelry supplies. The annual award is sponsored by jewelry supply wholesaler Halstead Bead, Inc.

The grant is awarded to a new jeweler in the bridge or handmade jewelry segment each year in recognition of design skill and business acumen. Candidates must submit lengthy applications including portfolios of original jewelry and details of their business plans.

“Amy’s work beautifully blends western inspired silversmithing with contemporary design elements. Her line is both fashionable and affordable,” said one competition judge, Hilary Halstead Scott, “her witty branding and accessible price points are perfect for an accessory start-up in the current economy.”

Fortunato received her jewelry training as part of a Fine Arts degree from the University of Connecticut. Her career has included graphic design and jewelry production for other companies prior to launching Cowboy’s Sweetheart. Fortunato describes the genesis of her company as her answer to the call “Go West, young lady, go West!” After moving to Colorado she began her love affair with the region’s natural surroundings, history and people.

“I attempt to celebrate a little bit of the American West each time I turn out a new piece.” she stated. “I am thrilled to receive this recognition and the opportunity to grow my business.”

Cowboy’s Sweetheart joins a distinguished list of past Grant winners in the industry. Her jewelry collections are available online at www.Cowboys-Sweetheart.com. A complete list of past grant recipients and finalists as well as competition details are on the Jewelry Design Business Development Grant website at www.HalsteadBead.com/grant.


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Cowboy’s Sweetheart Jewelry Wins National Award & Business Grant.

The Post-Recession Jewelry Market

In Jewelry Trends, Uncategorized on April 11, 2010 at 12:56 pm

The debate continues. Is the recession over? Is the “double dip” coming next? Are we in recovery, and if so, will we ever return to the market climate of 2007? Many questions still loom; however, one thing is certain: the jewelry market may never be the same again.

The fierce struggle for survival and dominance during this extended economic decline has permanently altered the jewelry scene. Fine jewelry retailers who once scoffed at selling silver or price points below $250 in their shops are now moving into entirely different market segments. This shift is unlikely to reverse when the economy if fully healed.

Due to high metals markets and the recession, fine jewelers followed the money last Christmas and heavily stocked  sterling lines like Pandora beads. This dramatic move has opened a window of opportunity for many bridge jewelry designers. Retailers who started with mass produced lines are finding that they can indeed sell lower price point jewelry to their market of “fine jewelry” consumers. Art jewelry in a wider range of metals is popping up in display cases that once only held platinum and solid gold. Buyers are seeing the value in fine design instead of just traditional materials.

Over time this change should greatly benefit jewelry artisans. The handmade movement was picking up considerable momentum prior to the recession and it stands a good chance of thriving in the post-recovery era. Craft jewelers who aggressively pursue new sales venues may find a more receptive audience than in the past.

This also presents an interesting challenge to boutique jewelers and American craft galleries that have carved out a niche in bridge jewelry over the last decade. Fine jewelers are now moving in on the turf they have spent years cultivating. Both groups will need to examine their respective strategies and brand identities in order to excel in the new business climate.

This environment may very well create a renaissance period in jewelry. The broader range of metals and design styles in the market give jewelers a new level of creative freedom. The increase in sales venues should also increase resale opportunities. I am excited to see how that will impact the industry and break down the segment barriers we have always known.

Copyright 2010. Halstead Bead, Inc., wholesale jewelry supplies since 1973. Please feel free to share or re-post this blog with proper credit. We also welcome your comments.

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Call for Entries – Jewelry Design Business Development Grant

In indie jewelry, Jewelry Business Grant, Jewelry Business Topics on January 28, 2010 at 8:35 am

Halstead Bead, Inc. is calling for entries to its fifth annual Business Development Grant competition for new American jewelry designers entering the bridge jewelry trade. The deadline for packet submissions is June 9, 2010. The winner of the 2010 Grant will receive $6,000 in cash and jewelry supplies as well as other benefits.

The Halstead Bead Jewelry Business Development Grant differs from other jewelry industry competitions and awards because of its emphasis on business skills. Entrants must demonstrate not only extraordinary design, but also a strong business strategy for their start-up. The application experience promotes the business planning required to make a jewelry brand commercially viable at the national level.

Jewelry designers utilizing a wide variety of fabrication techniques including casting, lampworking, metal clay, beading, or metalsmithing are eligible to enter the competition. Entrepreneur candidates must be US citizens who began their small businesses after January 1, 2007. Their design companies must focus on “bridge” jewelry which is the segment between costume jewelry and fine jewelry that includes accessories in sterling silver, Argentium, semi-precious stones, crystal, freshwater pearls and other similar materials.

Complete application details can be found at http://www.halsteadbead.com/Grant. Candidates must submit a design portfolio, resume and answers to several business planning questions. Applications must be received between April 15 and June 9, 2010. The grant website also includes several helpful articles on launching a national jewelry brand as well as information on past winners and finalists. Previous grant winners include VOSTENAKstudios, Bridgland Studios, Belle Brooke Designs, and Ananda Khalsa Jewelry.

The grant sponsor, Halstead Bead, Inc., is one of North America’s leading jewelry supply wholesalers. The firm was established 37 years ago and now supplies thousands of component resellers and jewelry manufacturers around the globe. Halstead Bead, Inc. is wholesale only and sells findings, chain, wire, sheet & beads for the bridge jewelry segment.

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Targeting Customers: The Key to Marketing Your Jewelry Business

In Jewelry Business Grant, Jewelry Business Topics on August 18, 2009 at 8:40 am

Know your audience. This simple principle is the basis of all marketing. Without targeted customers in mind, developing a marketing plan can seem very daunting. And without a marketing plan your efforts can become scattered and counterproductive to your image. Targeted customer groups will direct your energy into strategic, focused and successful marketing. This article will guide you through target customer identification and how to use your analysis as a tool for marketing campaigns.

So, who are your target customers? If you say, “women, aged 20-60 with middle to upper income levels,” then you have only scratched the surface of your customer analysis.

The biggest weakness we often see in our Jewelry Design Business Development Grant competition entries is the lack of targeted customer definitions. The above statement is not targeting. It describes an enormous population in this country with very little in common with each other. Moreover, targeting is more than just basic demographics like age and income. Jewelry is an emotional purchase. Targeting needs to include tastes, interests and self-image or “psychographics.” To be a successful marketer of your products, you must define your primary customer base in much greater detail.

It is true that your jewelry may appeal to a wide range of women. However, you should see that your designs sell best to a core group that has a great deal in common with one another. These commonalities will extend beyond just preferences in jewelry. To identify a primary target group it is a good idea to start with yourself. Your demographics, tastes and design style will likely appeal to people very similar to you. Try answering these questions about yourself and the majority of your clients.

  • What are your family situations?
  • Where do you live?
  • What are your career situations?
  • What are your primary social activities?
  • What are your hobbies?
  • What clothing stores do you frequently visit?
  • What are your definitions of a typical night on the town?

Now consider the following three example target groups defined by these parameters:

Young Urbanites

Women 22-30

  • Single, dating, perhaps have a roommate
  • Live in the city, most likely in apartments
  • Career-minded, educated and upwardly mobile
  • Socialize at work, bars, nightclubs, the gym, coffee shops ….Click below to keep reading the entire article Read the rest of this entry »

VOSTENAKstudios Wins National Jewelry Award & Business Grant

In indie jewelry, jewelry, Jewelry Business Grant, silver jewelry, Uncategorized on August 4, 2009 at 1:16 pm
ThePhoenix-VOSTENAKVOSTENAKstudios is the 2009 winner of a national competition for new American jewelry designers. The Jewelry Design Business Development Grant is awarded to a new entrepreneur each year in recognition of design talent and business acumen.

COTTONWOOD, Ariz., Aug. 4 /PRNewswire/ — VOSTENAKstudios of Cottonwood, AZ recently won a national jewelry design award and small business grant sponsored by industry supplier Halstead Bead Inc. Owner Valerie Ostenak will receive a prize package including a $6,000 grant of start up capital and supplies in recognition of her entrepreneurial skills and design talents. VOSTENAKstudios collections are available at fine stores and online at www.valerieostenak.com.

(Photo: http://www.newscom.com/cgi-bin/prnh/20090804/LA55999)

In response to winning the award Ostenak said, “I am absolutely thrilled and deliriously happy to be the 2009 winner. I am still laughing with joy!”

Ostenak’s artistic experience includes traditional jewelry training, blacksmithing, graphic design and painting. The influences of each of these media converge in her fashion jewelry creations. Designs are crafted from Argentium sterling silver and embellished with high karat gold accents, freshwater pearls and semi-precious gemstones.

The VOSTENAKstudios silver jewelry line is contemporary with fluid lines and attention to detail. Ostenak’s unique style is easily recognizable in every piece. She creates one of-a-kind statement necklaces, hairpieces and earrings with delicately intertwined metalwork in her Woven Collection. Her Ribbon Collection consists of more simple hammered styles with a highly reflective finish.

“These designs are stunning,” said Hilary Halstead Scott, a competition judge, “I know VOSTENAKstudios will become a big name in fashion and design.”

Ostenak’s new business prevailed over top competitors from across the United States. Entrants were required to submit a designer jewelry portfolio, a full business plan and written answers to several specific questions. The judging process scrutinized every aspect of candidates’ prospects for succeeding in the fashion and jewelry industries.

VOSTENAKstudios joins a distinguished group of designer jewelry artists who have received the Jewelry Design Business Development Grant in past years including Ananda Khalsa Jewelry, Belle Brooke Designs and Bridgland Studios. Details on the award and all of this year’s top finalists can be found at www.halsteadbead.com/grant.

Available Topic Expert(s): For information on the listed expert(s),

click appropriate link.

Valerie Ostenak

https://profnet.prnewswire.com/Subscriber/ExpertProfile.aspx?ei=90227

SOURCE VOSTENAKstudios

Grant Judging Nearly Finished

In Jewelry Business Grant, Uncategorized on July 10, 2009 at 9:15 am

We committed to an intense schedule of grant judging this year in hopes of concluding the process a little bit earlier than usual. We are on track to do so and expect to announce results in about two weeks, give or take. This will be a fresh batch of incredible new talent for all you fans of emerging designers. We will be profiling each finalist on this blog in the month of August so check back often to start planning your holiday wish list:)

Grant Judging – Day 10

In Uncategorized on July 1, 2009 at 10:37 am

What an amazing pool of candidates! Each year the competition gets tougher. The quality of the jewelry and the business plans keeps getting better and better. That also means it keeps getting tougher to get into the finalist round…

It is funny the trends we see each year when judging. It seems that there is always something we notice about the group of candidates as a whole. The first year we had a lot of amazing wire workers. The next year in 2007 the field was full of MBAs and accountants leaving the corporate world to pursue jewelry design careers. In 2008 we had an inordinate number of glass artisans and lampworkers. This year the defining trends are an abundance of art school graduates and metal forging techniques. These trends have no … Read the rest of this entry »

Grant Judging – Getting Organized

In Jewelry Business Grant on June 22, 2009 at 1:04 pm

Wow,  it looks like a great pool of candidates in the grant competition this year! We are busy organizing application materials in the judging rooms, sending out receipt confirmations and setting up for the long weeks of judging ahead.

We spend hundreds of hours reading through submissions each year. Every judge goes through most packets at least 2-3 times during the course of the judging process. These are big packets so that is a lot of reading and note taking! Judging typically takes at least three elimination cycles to get to our finalist group. We should finish organizing today and be ready to jump into judging tomorrow.

I plan to make a special trip to Starbucks to make sure I’m ready. Mmmm, I can taste my latte now:) There is nothing more delicious than a morning full of good coffee and beautiful jewelry. Good luck everyone!

Applications are arriving!

In Jewelry Business Grant on June 15, 2009 at 4:27 pm

Grant competition submissions are coming in quickly now in these final days before the postmark deadline on Wednesday. Applicants look great so far. We will begin judging on Monday. Best of luck to all who entered!