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Meet Elysha Roberts: The 2021 Change Up Challenge Winner

In celebration of launching our latest edition of Findings and Metals 2021-2022, we held the Change Up Challenge: Finding Inspiration Edition. This was an opportunity for jewelers to show us the stunning and creative pieces they have created using Stuller findings.

The winner of the Change Up Challenge this year is Elysha Roberts with Elysha Joy Metals in Vineyard Haven, Massachusetts.

Change Up Challenge Winner Elysha Roberts
Photo by Cory Ann Ellis

I got the chance to speak with Elysha and ask her some questions about her journey as a jewelry artisan as well as her personal life. Learn more about Elysha and her winning design below!

Congratulations, Elysha, on being named the Change Up Challenge Champion! Before we talk about the beautiful ring you made, tell me a little about yourself.

I was born and raised on Martha’s Vineyard, a small island off the coast of Massachusetts. I have always had a love for art and nature and growing up near the ocean gave me an endless amount of inspiration. I knew that I wanted to pursue art early on and attended The Massachusetts College of Art and Design where I received a Bachelors of Fine with a concentration in Jewelry and Metals. After my studies at The Massachusetts College of Art, I was accepted as a resident artist in the School for American Crafts at the Rochester Institute of Technology. During this program, I focused on metalsmithing while incorporating organic materials like handmade paper and found objects. The visual language of pods, cells, and other growth patterns became common themes I continue to reference. I maintain a studio practice steeped both in traditional metalsmithing alongside a sculptural approach to wearable art. By taking these ideas out of their normal context, I invite the viewer or the adorned to appreciate the natural beauty around us.

Photos by Joe Mikos and Maggie Shannon

That’s incredibly interesting! How did you get your start in the jewelry industry?

I got into the jewelry industry working as a bench jeweler for various jewelers and artists over the years but really focused on honing my traditional metalsmithing skills working as a goldsmith for CBstark Jewelers, a full-service jewelry store in my hometown. I have always had an appreciation for quality craftsmanship and attention to detail so learning, repairing, and creating custom work for a company with over 50 years in the industry really helped me develop my skills as a fine jeweler and made me want to create heirloom pieces, like engagement rings. I had a few friends reach out to me wanting custom engagement and various other custom pieces and this part of my studio practice has continued to grow over the last few years.  

Sounds like you’ve had some amazing opportunities to do great work. Let’s dive into your winning design! Tell me the story behind this ring.

Change Up Challenge Winning Design
Photo by Brian Kelley

This ring was a very special project for me personally because it was designed for my lifelong friend. The design process flowed easily because I knew her so well, I was able to generate pages of sketches based on a few ring styles I knew she had liked. This gave us the opportunity to pick and choose elements from a number of options and combine them into the perfect final design. Her partner wanted the symbolism of the sun and moon, so I incorporated elements that represented the phases of the moon and sun rays. We wanted an alternative gemstone for the center, something durable but colorful. She is a fine art painter so adding color was an important design element! We went with a beautiful Ceylon Star Sapphire cabochon, which fit perfectly with our celestial theme. Lastly, I incorporated 3 small diamonds. Three is a divine number, the first to which the meaning “all” was given and used here to represent themes of time and of life: past, present, future; birth, life, death; body, mind, spirit, beginning, middle, end.  

Wow! There is so much meaning in this ring and it really shows in the design. Can you tell me about the design process of the ring?

The process of creating this ring was tricky, there were a lot of small components and the majority of it was entirely hand fabricated from sheet metal. The center stone was an odd cut but I was able to modify a heavy oval bezel setting from Stuller and used their platinum bezels for the diamonds to make my life a little easier. Once I had those parts assembled the last components to solder were the small celestial motifs and finish with the stone setting. The diamonds were tricky to set so I modified some broken burs to fit perfectly in hard-to-reach areas.

That’s so creative and I’m sure your friend loves the ring. Before we wrap up, tell me a little about your life outside of work.

Outside of work I really enjoy being outdoors, I love to garden and take care of plants. I like to walk and observe nature slowly and collect things of interest from the beaches and the woods. I also love a good bike ride to pick up the pace. I do yoga to help keep my body in a good state for bench work. I also like getting cozy and listening to music and sketching or watching some good sci-fi and fantasy; the creativity of others can be a wonderful source of inspiration as well!  


Thank you so much for sharing your story with us, Elysha! Congratulations again on your winning design. We at Stuller are so happy to see the beautiful piece you’ve created with our findings and can’t wait to see what else you create! Make sure to follow along on Elysha’s journey by following her on Instagram and visiting her website at www.elyshajoymetals.com.

We’d like to thank everyone who participated in the Change Up Challenge: Finding Inspiration Edition. You inspire us constantly. Let’s also give a shoutout to our second place winner Elizabeth with Exodus Goldsmiths (@ExodusGoldsmiths) and our third place winner Tammy with On U Designs (@On_U_Designs).




Eleven Things to Know About Our Newest Findings Catalog

Stuller is very excited to release Findings & Metals 2021-2022 — a comprehensive guide to Stuller’s findings, classic mountings, fabricated metals, and loose stones assortment. For those familiar with the Stuller story, you know that findings have a special place in our earliest days. From selling from a tackle box in the trunk of Matt Stuller’s car to the expansive selection we offer today, Stuller findings embody more than 50 years of development — and quality you have come to expect and enjoy from Stuller.

We hope our customers use Findings & Metals 2021-2022 as an everyday resource and provide their customers with cherished pieces using the products within this 832-page catalog.

What’s New?

There is a lot to be excited about with this updated edition of our findings catalog, so we wanted to give our customers some insider information. Here are eleven things to know about Findings & Metals 2021-2022.

  1. We reorganized the settings section to showcase settings by stone shape as opposed to function.
  2. This updated catalog features more than 900 NEW series, which make up 21% of the catalog.
  3. For educational purposes, we have included more charts and visual graphs throughout the catalog. A few examples are pages 8 (shanks); 96 (settings); 382-387, 401 (earring compatibility); 680 (chain ends); and 702 (tie tack compatibility).
  4. See our new machined badge on pages 9-10 and 18. Our machined shanks are made the same way as our classic wedding band assortment.
  5. The former pendant components section is now two NEW sections: bails on pages 487-511 and necklace centers on pages 513-529.
  6. The Petite Pavé Dangle Collection helps customers express themselves and their creativity with affordable and sparkling styles. See this on-trend collection of dangles on pages 480-482.
  7. Look at page 634 to see our new assortment of oval jump rings made in-house!
  8. DID YOU KNOW? We make it easy to tell the inside dimensions of our jump rings by looking at the series number. For example, JR4020 means the inside length is 4 millimeters and the inside width is 2 millimeters. For JR10, the inside diameter is 1 millimeter.
  9. We make it easy to differentiate between settings and earring settings. Earring settings are shown facing left while other settings are featured laying down.
  10. Trend Alert! Medallions have become a rising trend within the jewelry industry. They are especially popular for customers that enjoy layering neckwear. Check out our new section of medallions in the dangles category on pages 474-475.
  11. Fun Fact: We upgraded our current body jewelry assortment to match the new industry trend, externally to internally threaded! Check out our assortment on page 702.

You can view digital PDFs from the catalog at Stuller.com/FindingsCatalog2021.

Change Up Challenge: Findings Inspiration Edition

Finding Inspiration is a campaign to inspire the inner designer in every jeweler by showing behind-the-scenes views of what makes up unique pieces of jewelry.

As a part of this campaign and to celebrate the launch of Findings & Metals 2021-2022, we are giving away three Stuller account credits: a $1,000 credit, a $500 credit, and a $250 credit. These can be used on any of our findings products. Prizes will be awarded to randomly chosen customers who have posted images of their jewelry made using Stuller findings from Findings & Metals 2021-2022 on Facebook or Instagram and have accounts in good standing.

The winners will be announced on September 3, 2021, in Stuller’s Instagram stories (@stullerinc).

To enter

  1. Take a picture of a piece of jewelry made with Stuller findings.
  2. From August 16 to August 27, 2021, submit your entry by posting the photo to Facebook or Instagram using #StullerFindings or by sending the picture to contest@stuller.com.

Click here to view the official contest rules.

Continue to Inspire

We are constantly in awe of the unique pieces jewelers make using Stuller findings and hope that Findings & Metals 2021-2022 helps you grow your business. As always, Stuller remains your partner and resource. Contact us at 800-877-7777 if you are ever in need of assistance and a member of our team will be happy to help.

Happy Selling!




Introducing the 2020-2021 Stuller Findings and Metals Catalog

2020-2021 Stuller Findings and Metals Catalog Blog Header

Findings are essential to your business. And they’re important to Stuller, too. In fact, our business began with findings nearly 50 years ago.

2020-2021 Stuller Findings and Metals Catalog

Here at Stuller, we carry one of the most extensive selections of die-struck and machine cut findings in the marketplace. Plus, the majority of that product is manufactured right here in Lafayette, Louisiana. There’s no place better to browse the breadth of our findings assortment than our NEW 2020-2021 Stuller Findings and Metals Catalog.

Not only does this catalog feature our best-selling classics, but we’ve also incorporated more 14k rose gold options, semi-set product, and fashion-forward components. It’s now easier than ever to find exactly what you need! We’ve included over 700 new styles within this new catalog. This means it consists of 20% new items! So crack it open. We think you’ll be delighted by what you find.

How often does Stuller send a findings catalog?

The last findings catalog went out in July of 2017. Working closely with our product development and design teams, we’ve found a two-year catalog cycle works best. After all, we’re always striving to serve new product to our customers. Plus, we’re constantly looking for ways to improve as we make it easier to find exactly what you’re looking for.

How long did it take to make the findings catalog?

It took about six to eight months to create the new findings catalog. But honestly, work begins as soon as a new catalog drops. We receive immediate feedback and work to incorporate customers’ preferences into our planning for the next edition.

 

Here are 5 New Updates to the Stuller Findings and Metals Catalog:

1. Updated Imagery

Following the last catalog, we received lots of customer feedback requesting products shown to scale. So naturally, we wanted to incorporate that feedback in this catalog. At the same time, we recognized the importance of sharing a view that showcases the tiny details and design elements of findings, too. So, to accommodate both needs, you’ll find magnified imagery along with items shown to scale to help you make the most informed buying decision.

2020-2021 Stuller Findings and Metals Catalog Earrings Settings Sketches Earrings

2. Improved Navigation

This catalog also features additional tabs allowing us to highlight more product categories than ever before. You’ll now find individual sections for chain, trims, pendant components, and earring components. In previous editions, we had quite a bit of variation in the product shown in each section. For example, if you were turning to the earring section looking for an earring post and back, you had to navigate through all the earring mountings before finding what you needed.

In this edition, we separated product categories for easier navigability. Now, whether you’re looking for an earring back, a bail, chain by the inch, or whatever you need, you can simply turn straight to that section.

2020-2021 Stuller Findings and Metals Catalog Earrings Settings Gemstones

3. Stuller.com Integration

From one catalog to the next, we’re seeing more and more customers browsing items on Stuller.com. Of course, everyone has their own preference. Some may want to call in their orders referencing the catalog, while others may prefer to shop and price orders online.

With this in mind, we really wanted to create a seamless shopping experience between all the ways our customers shop. We achieved this by adding additional links to stuller.com, listing related products in the catalog and on the web, and adding easier ways to identify product functionality.

2020-2021 Stuller Findings and Metals Catalog Earrings Settings Sketch Earrings

4. Expanded Section Introductions

As you’re probably aware, industry jargon can often be subjective. While one person calls a setting a head, others may call it a crown. So, we aimed to remove some ambiguity by expanding the introductions of each section. We added more visuals and information to describe what’s included in each section.

We also felt this would help your customers or sales associates new to the jewelry industry. Imagine a new sales associate who turns to the Trim section and wonders, “Hmm, what’s a trim?” The new shopping guides in each section contain explanations and visual examples of what’s showcased.

2020-2021 Stuller Findings and Metals Catalog Trim Sheet Wire

5. Semi-Set Pricing

Last, but not least, we’ve incorporated semi-set pricing throughout the catalog. We began this work in our last catalog which contained a unique section dedicated to showcasing our semi-set findings offering. However, since we’ve seen a greater trend towards semi-set product each year, we incorporated semi-set pricing throughout our latest 2020-2021 Stuller Findings and Metals catalog wherever it applied.

2020-2021 Stuller Findings and Metals Catalog Heads Shanks

Learn more about the 2020-2021 Stuller Findings and Metals Catalog here on Stuller.com.