Native American Jewelry Rolls On...

I have been networking with my contacts to find more Native American jewelry and kicked off the week by visiting a business associate that I have not seen in a long time. She is a fine jewelry dealer who also collects sterling silver. I brought her some gold and silver to sell and she kindly allowed me to peruse her silver offerings. I came away with many beautiful and interesting Native American and Mexican pieces, some of which are shown above. The double strand branch coral necklace is gorgeous, the best I've seen. The branches at the center are especially long and hard to find unbroken. From this lot the stamped pearls, the malachite cuff bracelet, the branch coral ring, the abalone ring, the sterling feather earrings, the butterfly earrings, the spiny oyster and liquid silver heart necklace, the tiny roadrunner pin and the teeny tiny roadrunner charm have sold, the other items are available.

Now that estate sales are nearly back in full swing, I will need to adjust my schedule accordingly. I am not able to work on the jewelry full time anymore but it's definitely staying a part of my schedule. I am so pleased with the online sales that I signed a three-year contract for the online store, paying in advance will reduce the monthly cost by about 30%. I am working on having new business cards and stickers made so I have some branding to include with jewelry purchases. Next step will be to order little cardboard boxes for shipping. I am amazed how I have powered through my supply inventory in just a few months. I had an entire closet and my huge credenza filled with hundreds of padded envelopes and shipping boxes. The shipping boxes are gone and I just have less than a third of the credenza filled with the padded envelopes. I have been receiving the huge ULINE catalogs for years, I took a look at their website and they have shipping boxes in every size imaginable that can withstand the weight of up to 200 pounds. They even have a man standing on a box as an example. Overall I have had really good luck with the jewelry making it to its destinations safely with a combination of either gift boxes inside a padded envelope or double boxing larger items. However one woman was so anxiously waiting for her ring and her package arrived crushed, it seems that the padded envelope was run over by a truck. The ring was bent but she was able to have it fixed. I am always looking to learn from my experiences and improve.

It is hard to believe that we are halfway through June already. This has been a very challenging year so far to say the least. I look forward to things continuing on their positive path. It has been extra work to manage the estate sales right now but we are happy to comply with regulations in order to get back to work and help our clients. It was definitely difficult for the clients whom we were not able to help. Instead of receiving money for the sale of their items, they had to pay money to have them taken away. We are not back to normal but have come a long way since then. It has taken some time but the customers and our helpers are catching on to the online sign-up and line manager system. Since I am a former IT professional I am always looking for ways that technology can improve our business. Once we move to Phase 4 of the Restore Illinois plan, gatherings of 50 or less will be allowed and that will minimize the wait times for customers to enter the homes.

In addition to the jewelry lot mentioned at the top of the blog, I posted another jewelry lot last night. This lot features gorgeous sterling silver Mexican caviar pearls, the nicest I've ever seen. I mixed these pearls with beautiful blues including lapis, glass and enamel. The raw larimar necklace and earrings set is fantastic and was handmade by a Colorado artist. The necklace has an interesting plunger clasp with a clear quartz dangle which looks great worn on the side. Because these pieces are not Native American, I am not able to post them for sale to as many online groups. As a result, just the cute little fish pin has sold so far. The unsold items will be posted to the online store. One thing that I have learned about selling the Native American jewelry online is NOT to polish it before selling. Many collectors prefer the vintage patina as opposed to a highly polished look. In my opinion, a combination of the two looks best. I do not like the jewelry to look dirty but appreciate the patina. For my own jewelry, I use a polishing cloth to remove dirt and lightly polish the high spots, leaving the patina in the background. I am not quite sure if that is the case with Mexican jewelry though. I think except for the pieces with the high / low spots, just about all of it looks way better polished. I did not polish the caviar pearls just in case someone in the groups would like the patina but if they do not sell I will polish them before posting to the online store.

I am still thinking about my jewelry lot posting schedule going forward - I had been on a Tuesday, Thursday, Saturday evening schedule during the stay at home order. However as people are allowed to dine in restaurants outdoors and may not be at home on a Saturday night, and I do the estate sales newsletter on Tuesday evenings I will probably change things up starting next week. I am thinking about a Wednesday, Sunday schedule. Sunday was always the best day of the week for online auctions back in the day. I think I will give it a try for a week and see how it goes. I was also debating about Friday nights because entering the weekend people are typically in a good mood and might treat themselves to something after a hard work week. Decisions, decisions. Until next time!