January 23, 2018

Featured Maker: Rene Baba

It's always nice to come across an artist that is local to us. We were thrilled to find Rene Baba and her mixed media pieces. She has a pretty cool style as you will see below. These first two pairs of earrings are a favorite of ours - we love the colors and she used our Beaducation Original Sacred Heart and Symmetrical Branch Border Metal Design Stamps. Let's meet Rene Baba.

I started making jewelry as a teenager, around 14 or 15 years old. I can remember the first time my friend pulled out some seed beads and fishing wire and I made my first necklace that slipped over my head. I would say that I've always been creative, dabbling in other forms of expression like painting and photography.

I took poetry and sculpture during my first semester in college but eventually became a business major. Through the years, jewelry evolved from a faint curiosity to a fun hobby and eventually a side business. However, it has always been a passion, a form of meditation and escape from my habit of overthinking. 

My work room is a place free from self-judgment where I don't care if I make mistakes. It's a place where I have undoubtedly gained some of my self-confidence. Other jewelers know what I'm talking about, those moments where you finish a piece and you can't believe YOU did that and you know right away, it's a keeper and not for sale! In addition to selling, I have started offering basic jewelry-making classes and minor repair work. 

From that first necklace that didn't have a clasp, most of what I learned was self-taught or learned from books and videos. In the beginning it was ALL ABOUT BEADS! I'm drawn to color and beads are my first love when it comes to making jewelry. I look forward to annual bead shows and gem fairs, they make me feel like a kid in a candy store. 

Years ago, I was at the Bay Area Bead Expo in Oakland, California. I had just started working with wire and walked up to the Beaducation booth. Slightly intimidated by seeing so many things I had never used before, I purchased my first metal hole punch. A few months later I purchased my first alphabet set of metal stamps from their website and incorporated that into my bead work. 

I like metal stamping for its ability to personalize jewelry since most of what I make is one of a kind. The boombox, sugar skull, and sacred heart stamps from Beaducation are probably my favorite. 

Lately I've been working on creating different patterns but that takes practice! For the past couple of years I have been really focused on earrings. I also make necklaces and bracelets for both men and women. This year I have started taking classes on soldering from Silvera Jewelry School in Berkeley, California. I see myself offering rings and more intricate jewelry very soon. 

I currently sell on Etsy, at local events in the Bay Area and house parties where the atmosphere can be more relaxed. I recently showed my jewelry at The Oakland Museum during their Friday Night Event in November 2017. This year the museum's Days of the Dead exhibit is inspired by the Monarch butterfly and I will definitely be offering some new styles to celebrate!

We thank Rene for sharing her work and her story. Please consider visiting her Etsy store for a gift for family, friends, colleagues or yourself. 

If you would like to be considered as a Featured Maker for Beaducation, please email Angela@Beaducation.com.

January 15, 2018

Featured Maker: Stacy Surman Designs

After leaving the workforce she missed the sense of community she once had so she got to work metal stamping and setting up her own store. She might be new to the game but she loves creating custom jewelry pieces. Let's meet Stacy at Stacy Surman Designs.

I’ve only been making metal stamped jewelry for the last 18 months and selling it for around a year. Truthfully, motherhood initially inspired my interest for metal stamping. Once my second child was born, I became obsessed with jewelry that had dates, names, inspirational words and phrases on it... really anything with some sort of engraving.

Somehow during this time I stumbled on the idea of metal stamping and more importantly  Beaducation. I realized I could make the jewelry that I loved and it would be truly unique.

When my first child was born, I quit my job in broadcast television. Over the last four years, I’ve had small work-from-home jobs but none of them were fulfilling or gave me any sort of community. Discovering metal stamping was really like finding a new identity for myself.

I loved creating jewelry so much that I decided to open my Etsy Shop, Stacy Surman Designs, as a way to showcase and sell some of my creations. Opening my shop allowed me to set goals for myself and have a creative outlet. Metal stamping (and Beaducation) gave me back a community I lost when I left the workforce.

Currently, my favorite pieces to design are not jewelry but rather Christmas ornaments. I find the larger size of the ornaments really allow my creativity to flow. My mind is constantly buzzing with all the design possibilities.

I am SERIOUSLY obsessed with these handstamped Christmas ornaments.

Aside from the ornaments, I really enjoy making what I call, chubby bar necklaces. The bars are 1 inch by 1/2 of an inch. I love to create little seasonal vignettes on these sized bars. 

For me, metal stamping is therapeutic. Something about using a hammer to strike design stamps hard enough to leave an impression in metal releases stress and tension in my body…that is unless I mess up a design!

It’s hard for me to pick just one design stamp or even a few that are my favorite. I’d have to break it down into categories. I draw a lot of my inspiration from nature, so currently I love the Beaducation evergreen and winter trees along with the fox, deer and squirrel stamps. I also have a lot of fun incorporating the tree stump.

When I am not making nature inspired jewelry, the triple chevrons, alpha star and four dots are some of my favorite stamps to use both together and individually. 

We thank Stacy for sharing her story. Follow Stacy Surman Designs on Instagram and Facebook. Visit her Etsy store if you are interested in a gift for family, friends, colleagues or yourself.

If you would like to be considered as a Featured Maker, please email Angela@Beaducation.com.

December 28, 2017

Beaducation Annual Newsletter: A look back at 2017


Each year we enjoy taking a look back on fond memories, accomplishments and excitement we've experienced. Here are some we'd like to share with you:
We started off 2017 with a big bang.

We updated our website with a fresh new look and feel, adding filters and re-organizing to help our customers locate items more easily.

In February we launched our first Facebook LIVE episode. We now have over 40 episodes providing tutorials, projects, tips and laughs!
When we surpassed 100k subscribers on our YouTube channel, we received the famous YouTube Silver Play Button. (woohoo! ...it even came in a frame)

In addition, we had a once in a lifetime experience, going behind the scenes and collaborating with other creators at YouTube headquarters.
We were SUPER excited to announce the release of Lisa Niven Kelly's second book, New Stamped Metal Jewelry, which she co-authored with the very talented Taryn McCabe. It is beautiful, inspiring and even smells good.
You started saving more with our Rewards Program, which gives customers 2% on their purchases (even during sales!) with points earned when they shop or write product reviews.
In April we created a private Facebook group, Beaducation.com Community - Metal Stamping & Beyond.

At almost 4k members, this group is absolutely amazing. The love, support, encouragement, and respect the members show each other is truly touching. Ideas and tips are shared, feedback is given and the vibe is, well, warm and fuzzy. We'd love for you to join here.
We now brand all of our Beaducation Original Metal Stamping Letter Setboxes with our logo. That may not seem exciting, but when you see a hot branding iron sear wood, it's pretty awesome. And we made tumbling a little easier with our Tumbler Kits. Plus state design stampscan now be easily purchased through the website.
Our NEW Beaducation OriginalSerendipity Letter Stamp Set has a pro option, it's tapered. This will help you see exactly where your letter will impress, making stamping that much easier and faster.

Choose the original or the tapered Beaducation Original Serendipity Letter Stamp Set here!

To help support and inspire our customers we launched our Featured Makers program - we now have over 25 Featured Makers!

We added the option to create backorders for many of our products. This feature allows you to secure the exact amount that you need, take advantage of quantity discounts, and save on items that may have sold out during our sales.

And we launched almost 50 new Beaducation Original Metal Design Stamps. See them all below!
This year also brought us some very exciting personal additions...
  • We welcomed Taryn McCabe’s second baby boy, Kodiak, to our Beaducation family.
  • Lora, in Customer Service, adopted a puppy who was in need of a good home. "Ava" now brings cheer to our office every week.
New year, new crib! Our fantastic office space is soon going to be a parking lot. While we have great memories here, I was able to find us an amazing space in San Carlos. We will be moving at the end of January. Stay tuned, we will be sending you a sneak peek soon!

We have NEW Beaducation Originals in the works already and can't wait to launch them. Plus we've discovered even more ways to make our subscribers feel special, so keep your eyes open for our emails. 

Thank you for being a customer and part of our Beaducation family. We couldn't do it without you and we are excited to share 2018 with you!

Happy Stamping!

Lisa, Mel, Claudia, Lora, Colin, Danelle, Jenn, JP, Angela, Mike + Paul

November 5, 2017

Featured Maker: Tracey Collins at Buffalo Stamper

We love to hear about your journeys and what got you started in metal stamping and jewelry making. Tracey has a pretty great story that some of us may relate too. We think the bears are pretty happy too! Let's meet Tracey.

My name is Tracey and my business is Buffalo Stamper! I have been making jewelry for over 20 years! My first job was at a bead store when I was 18.

I have enjoyed working in lots of different mediums including beading, wirework, mixed media and repurposing of vintage jewelry components. 

My metal stamping obsession was born out of a project I did with my daughter as a fundraiser for our zoo. My daughter Aly who was 7 at the time saw a billboard that said, "Our Bears Belong in Buffalo." 

The billboard was an appeal for donations to the Buffalo Zoo for a new Arctic Edge Exhibit that would house our new baby polar bear Luna. Aly decided we should do something to raise money and since jewelry is something I've done forever, that is what we settled on. I allowed her to design the pieces and quickly realized that metal stamping was going to be the best way to make her ideas come to life. 

Beaducation video tutorials were instrumental in our success! We made necklaces, cuffs and earrings all with polar bear or moon themes. 

Through on-line sales and local events we sold A LOT of product! 

In October of 2013 we presented the zoo with a check for $4,000.00! 

At the end of the project, I had amassed tools and stamps and had completely fallen in love with metal stamping. My shop Buffalo Stamper was born.

I am a proud life long resident of Buffalo, NY and you'll see that pride in many of my pieces.

I also enjoy making more artistic pieces and custom pieces for my customers. Using the stamps in unexpected ways keeps my creative juices flowing. 

My favorite Beaducation stamps are the Deco Fan, the Dandelion stamp and all border stamps!

See, we told ya it's a great story. We are always so touched when you all do something to help others, even more so when your kiddos are a part of it. We wish Tracey and her daughter continued success in designing and making jewelry. To find her pieces visit her Etsy store, Buffalo Stamper.

October 29, 2017

Featured Maker: Jen Ell with by Jen Ell

We love all of the pretty things. We also love edgy and that is just what we found with Jen at by Jen Ell. One of our favorites is her "lil bit hippie, lil bit hood" cuff. And as fans of Game of Thrones, how could we not appreciate her dragon earrings? Daenerys would be proud don't you think? Let's meet Jen from by Jen Ell:

I officially opened my Etsy shop in 2007, but I had been dabbling in jewelry making years before then. I honestly shudder when I think of some of first pieces, but we all start somewhere.

I grew up with a crafty mom that was always sewing and doing some sort of craft project – from making Christmas ornaments to wedding cakes. We both have this really bad habit of seeing things and instantly saying, “I can make that.” I started with simple beaded items and friendship bracelets when I was in middle school (I think), and over the years I just progressed. I always wanted things to be different. I hate the idea of walking into a room and seeing someone else wearing the same dress, or necklace, or shoes. At least now if that happens there’s a chance that I made it.

I got started selling my creations because others kept telling me I needed to - after a while I heard it enough that I finally listened. Selling online was very slow to begin with, but I was accepted into the first large craft show that I ever entered and the rush that I experienced seeing others love my stuff is what has kept me going.

My style has evolved over the years, and I’ve finally settled into a kind of a rocker boho chic style with jewelry, clothing and bags. I love chunky, bold and turquoise. I draw inspiration from all over – from pop-culture, 60’s rock, ethnic styles and more – nothing is off limits. If I like it I make something pretty with it, or inspired by it.
I love the possibilities! I can stamp pretty much whatever I want. I can have fun with words and designs, and I can create custom creations for my customers that often mean more to them because it’s been customized just for them. I had looked at incorporating metal stamping into my work a few times and just never took the leap. Finally, my pal Lauren Bell of Mad House Mind Works started stamping. I was able to pick her brain, and she gave me the push I needed to start!

Love, love, love my vintage tattoo font. I know that’s not a design, but I had to say it. Next would definitely be my Boho Arrow! Of course you can’t not love the feather and regular arrow too… I love them all – what can I say?!?!

Find Jen's amazing work on her website and follow her on social.


If you would like to be considered as a Featured Maker, please email Angela@Beaducation.com.