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Author Topic: Thoughts from a bead buyer  (Read 6570 times)

Carol-Ann

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Thoughts from a bead buyer
« on: January 05, 2013, 04:30:43 PM »
Hi there,

I know I am very new here and I hope I'm not stepping out of line but would just like to make a couple of points from a bead buyers perspective.

Please, please always include hole size in you listings - I can't count the number of times I've walked away from beautiful beads because the hole size in not listed - Yes I know I could ask, but I'm browsing and if something catches my eye I like to click buy there and then.

The second thing I really like is when there is a photo of the beads held in a hand, it really gives me a sense of proportion, I realize that we all have different sized hands and obviously measurements (metric if possible) must be included but beads pictured in the hand are a definite pull when it comes to buying.

CA

ejralph

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Re: Thoughts from a bead buyer
« Reply #1 on: January 10, 2013, 10:28:56 AM »
Hi Carol Ann

What a great post - thanks for giving us your feedback as an art bead buyer. You've raised some points I've not considered and made me re-think other points.

I don't tend to list the hole size in my listings - although I do cover it in the text for the general category. So that's something I can change from the get go!

I've always been put off picturing the beads in the hand. For me, I get really turned off when I see pictures of beadmaker's beads in their hands. I don't know why that is. I've just never liked it.

But... I am going to try it out, if physically possible with my photo set-up and see if I can get shots I feel happy with.

Its an interesting discussion - thank you for starting it. I don't know how I missed this thread before!

From a seller point of view - I don't know if buyers realise how time-consuming doing the photos actually is? It seems like it must surely only take a moment, but for some reason it just doesn't. And every new photo adds to the time and therefore the price. Crazy as it sounds, it takes me as long to market a bead set as to make it.

So I think there is a natural reluctance to go too mad on the photo-taking. Especially for more regular bead sets.

But on the flip side, if we have customers walking away from a sale because the photos we do have just aren't working, then obviously it is time we NEED to take to effectively market our work.

I'm certainly going to try to implement your ideas more. On my website I only have room for one photo, so I don't think I will be including hand-shots except in the case of the more unusual sets maybe, where I can link to a page of bigger / different photos. On my etsy shop, I have more scope for adding new photos.

Better go slather on some handcream onto these old crocodile paws of mine then!

Emma
Emma from Sunny Sussex, UK
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ickledookie

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Re: Thoughts from a bead buyer
« Reply #2 on: January 10, 2013, 11:07:33 AM »
Emma it can take me upto 3 days to photograph & edit so I dread to think how long it will take you! As for photographing your beads in your hands I wouldn't bother, you already do a fantastic job!!!! Maybe have a prop in the photo to help judge the bead sizes if anything.

I have one lady that needs beads with larger than normal holes but to make all my beads that way would be no good for the other 99% of people! So sometimes it's just not worth the hassle....

ejralph

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Re: Thoughts from a bead buyer
« Reply #3 on: January 10, 2013, 11:24:33 AM »
I think its somewhat easier with polyclay beads, because if the customer needs a bigger hole, they can enlarge them with a drill bit - very easy to do by hand

But with lampwork or ceramic, the hole size is very much fixed and so I can understand that customers have different needs. Like you say though, you cannot always please all the people, all the time.

My lampwork beads have hole sizes on the smaller side - in fact my bead holes for all my beads tends to be around that same size 1.5 mm or thereabouts.

But someone planning to make some jewellery on leather thong has very different neads to someone stringing up lampwork beads with other smaller sized beads on flexrite wire or similar.

Emma
Emma from Sunny Sussex, UK
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Carol-Ann

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Re: Thoughts from a bead buyer
« Reply #4 on: January 10, 2013, 01:36:03 PM »
I don't have time to actually make jewellery anymore however I still love stringing beads which I seem keep on buying  :-[

I buy a lot of beads that I can just pop onto leather cord or silk ribbons so for me 2mm holes are perfect and now I can make my own  ;D

Another pet hate when browsing beads is - A beautiful bead set with focals with 2mm or bigger holes and smaller beads with smallholes - Neither fish nor fowl in my humble opinion.

I love big chunky beads at the moment but can't get my head around big chunky beads with tiny holes but that's probably just me  :)

Now I've turned into a whiny bead buyer :)


ickledookie

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Re: Thoughts from a bead buyer
« Reply #5 on: January 10, 2013, 01:44:37 PM »
I can understand it's annoying when you want to string something on larger material, infact I had the problem this morning!  ::)  :D

ejralph

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Re: Thoughts from a bead buyer
« Reply #6 on: January 10, 2013, 02:15:24 PM »
Its always useful feedback

As a bead maker, I've found that I get a pretty wide range of "dream qualities" from customers. And its hard to please everyone, because everyone's needs are different

But unless people who do the buying actually tell us and go into detail, we can't see where any "common ground" is on everyone's wishlist.

For laughs I tried to take in-hand photos of one bead set today. Not sure about it, because the odd position seems to make the hands look ballooned anyway!

But for S&Gs, here's one - beads are glass, not polymer, but you get the driff.

I've decided to add a page to my website showing larger photos that I can link to from the product page for any bead set I sell,
http://www.ejrbeads.co.uk/lampworkbeadslarge.htm

Great idea Carol-Ann

Emma
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ickledookie

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Re: Thoughts from a bead buyer
« Reply #7 on: January 10, 2013, 03:00:00 PM »
I would say the last pic where just the tips of your fingers are showing through looks the best by far to me!  :D

ejralph

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Re: Thoughts from a bead buyer
« Reply #8 on: January 10, 2013, 03:10:26 PM »
I agree

You have no idea how I contorted myself for these shots  :o

Well, I've tried to implement all of Carol Ann's suggestions in listing my new lampwork today. Included a page with hand shots and tried to make the technical specs about the beads clearer.

I'm trying to get into the habit of taking more photos for things anyway because Etsy allows more than one.

Emma
Emma from Sunny Sussex, UK
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Carol-Ann

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Re: Thoughts from a bead buyer
« Reply #9 on: January 10, 2013, 04:02:34 PM »
Emma - Those are perfect.

I can instantly work out how big the beads are even though your hand is probably smaller than mine - It doesn't matter as to me it gives them a scale that I can understand and can start working with in my minds eye - I'm not sure if I am explaining it well  :-\

ickledookie

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Re: Thoughts from a bead buyer
« Reply #10 on: January 10, 2013, 04:04:08 PM »
I agree

You have no idea how I contorted myself for these shots  :o



Emma

Lol oh Emma I can imagine  ;D ;D ;D just hope you haven't done yourself an injury in the process!!

Carrie

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Re: Thoughts from a bead buyer
« Reply #11 on: January 10, 2013, 05:44:19 PM »
It's a really good idea and those two shots are very good  :) 
I don't know why it is, but judging how a bead will look from measurements alone is very difficult so anything that helps and avoids possible disappointment is good!

ejralph

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Re: Thoughts from a bead buyer
« Reply #12 on: January 10, 2013, 05:52:25 PM »
Emma - Those are perfect.

I can instantly work out how big the beads are even though your hand is probably smaller than mine - It doesn't matter as to me it gives them a scale that I can understand and can start working with in my minds eye - I'm not sure if I am explaining it well  :-\

You're explaining yourself perfectly!

It's really just laziness on my part that stopped me doing these types of shots before. And I don't know that I will be doing them for every set, but we'll see,

I sort of assume that the measurements are enough, but I know myself how I can't judge scale on measurements along so why I think everyone else can is beyond me!

I remember being very surprised at the size of one beadmakers lampwork once. I had assumed her measurement of 10 mm was hole-to-hole, because that's just how beads are measured (or so I thought)
But she was measuring the diameter of the, rather donut shaped, bead not the hole-to-hole measurement. So the bead was 10 mm across, but when threaded, it was just 6 mm long and weeny looking!

Emma
Emma from Sunny Sussex, UK
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SMLIRAS100

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Re: Thoughts from a bead buyer
« Reply #13 on: January 10, 2013, 06:33:13 PM »
Yes the measuring point is very important. Sometimes I haven`t bought something I liked just because the measures weren't posted. I normally take a photo of my jewelry with a ruler because when I want to buy something for me I paint it on paper (the shape) from the measures they give me to make an idea of how big/small it is.
I hadn`t thought of making photos on my hand, but I'll give it a try because for the small things (earrings, brooches) it could be interesting.

Carol-Ann

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Re: Thoughts from a bead buyer
« Reply #14 on: January 11, 2013, 05:21:57 AM »
Emma - I had exactly the same thing, years ago I bought a stunning bead set, it really was beautiful both in the pictures and real life however one needed a magnifying glass to appreciate the beads beauty in real life as they were miniscule  :(

A lot of US sellers use coins for scale but as I have no idea how big those coins actually are never having seen one that does not help.

I tried doing some hand shots of my own yesterday evening - Blimey my hands are ugly  :-\