Today marks my 12th blogging anniversary.  I did not know way back in 2007 that my little blog would grow to what it is today.  Just over 5,000 posts ago, I began The Beading Gem's Journal all because my students asked if I had a website! I did not at the time.

I chose the blogging format because I wanted to share their designs online to encourage them and have a more dynamic site at the same time. My blogging epiphany came when I posted my first tutorial and discovered a (then) largely unmet need.  People really, really wanted to learn how to make jewelry.

I started the blog for all the right reasons. It was never about money - if so, believe me, I would have quit a long time ago!  This is after all, a niche. But instead it was about my passion for this craft and the fun I have sharing that passion.

I've learned a lot in those years.  For starters, I discovered having a long blog name was awkward. The Journal part became history a few years ago. Another early lesson -  I had to be consistent with regular posts otherwise readers would not know what to expect and lose interest. So sticking with a schedule was important for what is a long term endeavor. Don't start a blog if you are unable to keep it up.  As with everything, constant practice also improved my writing skills and writing got easier and faster as time went on.

Much of my time is actually spent behind the scenes, designing tutorials, research, emails, promotional activities and troubleshooting.  Yes, this is a one woman operation! Occasionally, things do fall through the cracks, most often with editing!  So I appreciate your patience and understanding when things go awry.

Did you know finding tutorials and designers to feature was harder in my early years? The situation is very different today. There is a lot more out there and the quality of the work and the innovative approaches have dramatically improved. There is so much excellence out there I sometimes find it difficult to select awesome designers and instructors from such a talented and ever growing pool!

A big thank you too, to readers who have kindly sent many tips and finds!  Sometimes a question turns into an opportunity for a new blog post.

This blog would also cease to exist if not for loyal readers like you.  Who wants to write anything if nobody reads it? Thousands of you have been following my blog for years.  It remains free for all -  the ad and affiliate fees I do receive when you go shopping supports the blog. In turn, you also help the wonderful designers and small businesses I choose to feature.

We are all deeply touched for the support of this community.  I also thank you for the kind comments and emails some of you took the time to write...all of which I appreciate.  They really keep me going. Blogging can get lonely and a hard slog at times.

A couple of suggestions for readers.  If you are a daily email subscriber and find the updates too much, consider switching to weekly subscription.  I personally find Pinterest to be an excellent visual bookmarker for all I am interested in.  So consider using that platform, if you are not already doing so, to save the blog posts you find useful. 

Rest assured  I am still working on converting what was my How to Photography Jewelry (using smartphones) webinar to a more convenient Online Class for all. It is a lot more work than I thought it would be given my limited time! I had intended to get it done by last summer, then fall came and life got in the way.  I will announce on my blog when it is ready. Or you can sign up for a special notification through the link above. Not everybody subscribes so they are likely to miss a post!

Before we all move on to another creative year ahead, I would love to know what YOU most like to do. This will help guide me in writing relevant future posts.  Just tick off your favorite jewelry making techniques below - you can select more than one box. I know many of you are into different techniques.

And don't forget to say hi in the comments!

What Kind Of Jewelry Making Do You Do?

polymer clay
metal clay
resin clay
bead stringing
lamp work
Please Specify:
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Before You Go:

This blog may contain affiliate links. I do receive a small fee for any products purchased through affiliate links. This goes towards the support of this blog and to provide resource information to readers. The opinions expressed are solely my own. They would be the same whether or not I receive any compensation.
Original Post by THE BEADING GEM
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