Guest Post by Judith at Boy and Bear

Hello, I’m Judith from Boy and Bear where, just like Gemma I’m a keepsake jeweller. She has asked me to talk a little bit about the breastfeeding pendants I make so here I am with a little bit of background for you on how they came to be.

I am a mum of 2 boys, aged 1 & 3 and have breastfed both of them. When I thought about being a mother I never thought about how I would feed my baby, I just assumed I would bottle feed and that would be that. I felt a bit squeamish about breastfeeding bizarrely –  I couldn’t tell you why. It wasn’t until I was around 34 weeks pregnant that I thought I’d give it a go. I attended a couple of classes at the local midwifery unit and put breastfeeding as my choice on my birth plan.

I went on to have a traumatic birth with my son which affected my mental health pretty severely and meant that I felt breastfeeding was the only thing I could do right so it became incredibly important to me. However, my son’s latch wasn’t great and caused some real pain for the first 10 weeks or so until we sussed things out which was very difficult for me but we persevered.

 

Unfortunately, for reasons we never really got to the bottom of, our son was diagnosed with failure to thrive and was admitted to hospital a couple of times within his first 6 months, a scary and unsettling period for first time parents.

After his initial admission I pumped for him, every 3 hours around the clock, to top up his feeds. Those few weeks were incredibly hard for me as I didn’t respond well to the pump and the lack of milk I was expressing was compounding my feelings of not being good enough. A month later he was admitted again and it was decided that we would top up with a high calorie formula and we combi-fed from then until he was 9 months old and had caught up.

I was diagnosed with PND and PTSD during this time too which led to me being unable to return to work so Boy & Bear was opened allowing me to have a focus away from my illness.

I’m quite a tenacious person and was determined not to give up so persevered through it all and when we came out the other side and hit 12 months I wanted to make something to commemorate our journey as I was beyond proud of where we had managed to get to from where we had come. These breastfeeding pendants were the result.

I made a gymnurstics pendant because that’s where we were in our journey, I was constantly having a foot in my face or a baby climbing over my shoulder, and I engraved his name and birthday on the reverse.

By the time we hit 2 years of breastfeeding I was expecting his little brother so opted to wait until he arrived to make something to commemorate that stage. I’ve moved my gymnurstics charm to my bracelet now and I have a copper tandem feeding charm instead.

Out of the designs available, the most popular is the  International Breastfeeding Symbol. I often handcraft these for people who are gifting them to friends to commemorate the end or beginning of a journey to show their support. They do make the perfect keepsake for birth workers or breastfeeding support workers too – I don’t know how I would’ve made it through if it hadn’t have been for my peer supporter.

Well, that’s pretty much all there is to say about the origins of these pieces, I hope you found my story interesting and if you’d like to know more please feel free to pop over and see me. You can find me on facebook, twitter, instagram,or pinterest

J xx

double fingerprint necklace

Double sided fingerprint necklace 2 Double sided fingerprint necklace 1Options for fingerprint jewellery with 2 prints

I’m guessing you found yourself on this page because you were looking for options for a double fingerprint necklace. I can certainly help you with that.

The major thing to consider when choosing a necklace with 2 fingerprints is whether you would like to have both the prints on one pendant, or whether you would prefer 2 individual charms on your necklace.

Double Fingerprint Necklace

This might depend on the age of your children and the size of their prints.  Older children and adult prints might look better on 2 separate fingerprint charms.  Here is an example of a double fingerprint necklace available from Lasting Touch.

This necklace features 2 heart charms, Double fingerprint necklace with 2 heart jewellery charmsone is slightly smaller than the other. This means that the two charms sit nicely together and also represents the 2 children’s ages if one is younger than the other.   If you have twins you might prefer to have both charms the same size.   This options for cascading fingerprint charms is also nice if you plan to have more children as you can also add a third, smaller heart at a later date if you wish.   If you already have three children you can buy the triple fingerprint necklace.

2 fingerprints on 1 necklace

This option might suit you if you have two young children with small prints.  (Keep in Fingerprint necklace with 2 printsmind that children under 12 months often don’t have defined fingerprint lines).  It can work for larger prints however they might overlap.

 

 

 

 

Double Sided fingerprint necklace.

This is the most expensive of the 3 options. This is because it has to be made thicker to allow for a print to be pressed in on each side.  The process of adding the 2nd print without distorting the 1st print is also more complicated than a single sided charm. Another downside to double sided fingerprint jewellery is that one print is always hidden.  If you would like me to make you a double sided fingerprint charm please drop me a message at gemma@lastingtouch.co.uk to discuss it.

Double sided fingerprint necklace 2Double sided fingerprint necklace 1

Finally, if you don’t think that fingerprints will be an option due to children being very young or the prints being too large, you might prefer to consider a full handprint on your keepsake jewellery.  Hand and footprints are resized to fit and so are suitable for any age or size print.

Double handprint necklaceStill not sure what will be the best option for you?
Feel free to drop me an email for a chat. gemma@lastingtouch.co.uk

 

Why is fingerprint jewellery priced differently?

Do you wonder why there are so many different prices for fingerprint jewellery?

The difference in prices of fingerprint jewellery is something that comes up regularly as something that my customers simply don’t understand. So I thought I would write an article to try to explain.

 

Types of fingerprint jewellery artist.

There are three types of sellers in this industry. Small and large professional businesses and hobby artists.  Hobby artists are almost always cheaper as they do not have the overheads that professionals have.
Keep these following points in mind though.
Professional artists are more likely to have public and product liability insurance in place.  They are also more likely to have a returns and cancellation policy.
If ordering online, a professional business will also have privacy policies in place for protecting your personal data and ensuring that it is stored and used correctly and safely.

Professional artists will most likely have invested in learning extra skills and purchasing quality tools. Equipment such as a kilns and professional standard polishing motors can run into thousands of pounds, but they do ensure a better quality of product.
May new artists and hobby artists will only be able to fire their keepsake jewellery with a gas torch.  (I’m not knocking that, I started out that way myself!)   999 fine silver is the only type of silver that can be torch fired and so this is usually the only type of silver that a hobby artist will be able to offer. Kiln firing allows the artist to work with sterling silver and creates a more durable product.

Large businesses usually charge more, but this doesn’t always mean you get more!

Here’s what the higher price of your jewellery might be paying for…

Overheads – big companies often have staff to pay and offices and workshops to run.  Again, the cost of the piece you buy is reflected in that.   You can get a beautiful piece at a fraction of the cost by choosing a smaller business artist.  Maybe someone who runs a professional business but works from homeand does not have staff.

Big advertising spend – this money has to come from somewhere and a strong online presence doesn’t come cheap! Advertising via google and facebook etc will be recouped in the price of the product, don’t be fooled into believing that just because a company is big and has staff that the quality of the finished jewellery will be any better than that of a smaller businesses.   Many small businesses rely on reviews and word of mouth, sometimes alongside a small advertising budget to get themselves known.

Once you have established that you are comparing like for like businesses, then there are some other things to consider.

Actually, if you do your research there’s not always as much difference in price as you might think.   A lot of artists will display what looks to be a low price but then charge extra for a print kit and postage.  Some may even expect you to add your own postage stamp when returning your print kit.
If you are supplying your own prints or using an artist that’s local to you then this might work to your advantage.

Some artists prefer to display a price that includes the print kit and postage. Usually artists who work with customers all over the country rather than mostly local will adopt this type of pricing structure.  If you want to be able to order online and have your kit and finished jewellery conveniently delivered in the post, then this type of pricing structure will most likely benefit you as it is simple and shows you the price you will pay upfront.

Packaging.

How important is it to you that your jewellery comes gift boxed and presented nicely?  If you’re happy to have it arrive wrapped in tissue paper inside a jiffy bag then you can save some money.  I imagine that if you are spending a reasonable amount of money on a piece of jewellery that this probably isn’t the case though!  Personally I always supply my jewellery in a gift box and presented nicely and I would not compromise on that to save a couple of pounds.

Attachments

Are attachments included in the price? Sometimes a necklace is included, sometimes it’s not.
What are these made of?  At Lasting Touch I only supply sterling silver accessories (with the exception of split ring style keyrings which are stainless steel).  Some traders will cut the cost by using silver plated necklaces etc.  Be sure to check what you are getting for your money.

Summary

I hope this article has helped you understand what influences the price of your fingerprint jewellery.

Hobby Artists

In summary, if price is your primary concern then you will usually find that hobby artists are cheapest. You’ll usually find them on marketplaces like eBay and Etsy (you’ll find some small businesses there too).  Keep in mind that their prices are very low, there could be a reason.  They may not have insurance or be working with the best quality tools.

Small Businesses

If you are looking for a professional quality product and service but with a personal touch, look for a small business.  Most small businesses have a standard range of keepsake jewellery but many are also happy to customise them to your wishes or even design completely bespoke items for you.
Most businesses of this type will be in the mid price range but in my opinion offer the best value for money.    There is a good mix of well established and new businesses in this category, so plenty to choose from. Most small businesses will have social media pages as wells their own websites where you can find out about them and their products.   Some of these businesses really are the best kept secrets on the internet though! WDouble fingerprint necklace with 2 heart jewellery charmsithout big advertising budgets it can be difficult for them to get in front of the right people, so you may have to dig a little deeper to find them, try going two or three pages back on google rather than always clicking on the first link.

 

Large Businesses

A large business may be for you if you are someone who feels better about buying from a big brand.  These companies charge more but have bigger buying power, so their branding and packaging might feel more mass produced.  You are less likely to get that personal touch from these companies, you might not even know exactly who is going to be making your jewellery.  That may or may not bother you.
The benefit might be that these businesses are usually well established and are unlikely just disappear (though there are plenty of well established small business too!).   Don’t be fooled by front page appearances on google or high numbers of social media likes. These are easy to get if you have a high advertising budget!  They certainly don’t mean that the company produces better products than a smaller company.  It just means that more people know about them!!