3 Great Money-Saving Tips for Jewelry Makers

by Dan Day, Exclusively for Fire Mountain Gems and BeadsĀ®

Tip 1: Mix and Match for Lower Prices

Use our exclusive, money-saving All Assortable Pricing. Quite simply, All Assortable Pricing means that buying any combination of products will count towards a total that leads to even larger discounts.

There are four prices listed for each item in the catalogs and on the website. The four prices are for orders of 1 to 14 units, 15 to 49, 50 to 99 and 100 or more. All Assortable Pricing counts the total number of units, not a single product.

Whether you have 50 of 1 unit or 1 of 50 units, it is all the same--mix and match to your heart's content. If your cart has 48 units in it, adding just two more can make your total cost drop.

''It really pays to take advantage of Fire Mountain's assortable pricing - if only to be able to get everything you need in one order and pay only a single postage charge. To get the assortability deal, just count up the total number of items you buy on your order. It isn't based on how many of each item. This total number of items qualifies you for the price you pay. For example, if you only buy 50 total items on your order, you get charged the third column price, the 50-99 item pricing (which is sensational!)." - Tammy (Tennessee)

Tip 2: Use Your Leftovers

Beads left over from projects can be combined into new projects. Even if the beads are mismatched, you can creatively mingle them in a tasteful ''Mulligan stew'' or "bead soup." For example, create patterns or swatches of like beads and arrange them in necklace or bracelet. Or, different styles of beads can be combined into a mosaic pendant or pair of earrings that aligns with Bohemian styles.

3 Great Money-Saving Tips for Jewelry Makers 3 Great Money-Saving Tips for Jewelry Makers

3 Great Money-Saving Tips for Jewelry Makers

Strands of fine gemstones often come with tassels on the ends. Upcycle them into fabulous, trendy tassel jewelry. Slide tassels onto beading hoops for fun pendants and earrings, add beads to some of the strands or glue them into cones--the possibilities are endless!

3 Great Money-Saving Tips for Jewelry Makers

Looking for an elegant way to use leftover cord after creating kumihimo and leather designs? Gather your "tails" into beading cones, add a hanging loop and other beads and embellishments, and voila! You have stylish tassels ready for use as jewelry, purse charms, zipper pulls and more.

3 Great Money-Saving Tips for Jewelry Makers

An excellent resource for advice and tips for making use of leftover beads and findings is our book Secrets to Beading Success.

Hot Tip: Be inventive--take apart some of your finished jewelry for different jewelry-making components.

Tip 3: Use Substitutes

Metal components can be pricey, especially precious metals like sterling silver and karat gold. Balance this out by getting the look you want with precious metal-filled or plated base metal components. For example:

  • For the look of sterling silver, use silver-filled.
  • For antiqued sterling silver, substitute "pewter" (zinc-based alloy)
  • For karat golds, replace with gold-filled
  • To get the look of copper, switch it out with copper-plated base metal such as brass or pewter
  • Plated and finished base metals (brass, copper, steel, etc.) are an even more economical substitute for more expensive precious metals.

''The Lipstick Effect'' article has more details on cost-saving metal substitutions. Check it out for more information and get some ideas.

Bonus Tips

Organizers let you easily see what you have, so you don't buy more supplies when you don't need to.


The right set of pliers can increase your efficiency and prevent damaged materials. Use ''A Guide to Jewelry-Making Hand Tools'' to help you choose which pliers will produce the best results for your project.

Improve your technique and you'll save money by saving time on materials. You can learn techniques and how to use tools more efficiently with our many online tutorials.

Our jewelry-making community has shared lots of helpful advice to save time and money. For example, how to reuse packaging such as bottles and containers.

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