10 Steps for a Successful Jewelry-Making DIY Party

Kristal Wick
Kristal Wick
is the editor of
Beading Daily

We're in the thick of holiday festivities, and I can't help sharing another fun party idea for all my jewelry-making Beading Daily peeps. I love throwing DIY (Do It Yourself) parties at work. During our recent party I called "Blingfest," I taught 2-part epoxy and heat-setting Swarovski crystal flat-back techniques onto fabric, glass, jewelry, and even a bright red stapler, believe it or not! It's a great way to share ideas, get inspired, and chat with your peeps. Once you do this at work, you'll want to do it at your BFF's house as well. The more, the merrier! No need to be overwhelmed with the details or the fact that you've never done this before; I'll share my tips with you guaranteeing a successful soiree this season!

Ready, Set, BLING!


1. Plan as far ahead as possible. Everyone has a tight schedule this time of year and would hate to miss out on the fun. Send out e-mail invites or paper invitations with all the details.


2. Have a start and end time or you may have folks camping out in your studio simply not able to stop (you've been warned).


3. Select a simple project that can be done in an hour or less. If you don't know everyone's skill level, it's safer to do something quick and easy. Be sure the pokey folks can finish up at home by themselves; there's always one in the bunch, and it's not nice to leave them stranded!


4. Bring all the supplies yourself and charge a kit fee for everyone or have them bring their own supplies. Make sure it's clearly communicated what to bring. Nothing is worse than someone forgetting a key ingredient and sitting there watching everyone else play!


5. Clear off a work space. Be it your dining room table or the conference room table at the office. It doesn't matter how large or small your space is, just be sure to start with an uncluttered work surface. Put down a plastic tablecloth if you'll be getting messy or gooey (it happens more than you think). There's a great article in Cloth Paper Scissors Studios on "The Portable Studio" showing how to organize a portable studio to take with you which would come in handy for this type of event.  




6. Set up workstations for each attendee and keep things organized. Keep seed beads, crystals, findings, and other small items in separate containers. I put down a bead mat for each attendee. I also lay out all the items we'll be using so I can chat about each one before we start and not have to dig around searching for things wasting precious creativity time!




7. Describe all the supplies you'll be using so everyone starts out on the same page.



8. Explain the process or steps and show how to make the project. I strongly urge you to demo the project or technique yourself before your peeps start playing with any of the materials, or it'll be like herding cats! Once they start, good luck trying to stop them. It could get ugly . . .


9. Provide beverages and goodies or have everyone bring something simple to share. Nothing is more enjoyable after work than a glass of vino and creating jewelry masterpieces with your friends. I do not recommend libations at work unless your boss brings it!



10. HAVE FUN! Don't become so stressed out about the details that you forget this is supposed to be a good time, especially for you. If you aren't relaxed and enjoying yourself, your friends won't either!


Parties are the best way to dive into new techniques – for you or your friends. Gather together a bunch of your best pals to try your hand at whatever project, jewelry or otherwise, you’ve been interested in. For me, it’s the No-Sew Bags (or maybe one of the other 30 projects) in Cloth Paper Scissors Gifts, one of my favorite magazines.


P.S. Be sure to make an extra project for me while you're at it. I've been relatively good this year, Santa!


Come bead with me!


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