Keeping Our Jewelry Inventory Organized

Keeping our jewelry inventory organized is an evolving process.  When we first started vending at shows I was at a complete loss as how to make sure that we were keeping our sold inventory deleted from the shop.

Jewelry Display TraysIn the early days of our business I mostly had all our jewelry uploaded to our Gaelic Forge shop.  When we set up at shows we used our shop’s inventory.  The week after the show was a disorganized nightmare!  I literally laid out all the display trays, all thirty-one of them, on the living room floor.

Jewelry Display CasesThen next I brought Etsy up on the computer and opened a tab for each page in our shop.  In those days that was anywhere between seven and eleven pages.  I would have between 168 to 264 pieces of jewelry that I had to check.

It was crazy.

I would go to page one, check the first piece of jewelry, and then literally, very literally look at each and every display case in front of me.  If I didn’t see the actual piece of jewelry in any of the  boxes then I would deactivate it from the shop.

After this I would look at the second item on page one and gaze through the display boxes.  et cetera, et cetera, et cetera…

On to the second page, on to the third page….

For hours.  For days.  It seemed to go on forever.

Jewelry Inventory

I’ve heard such stories from other jewelers who were at their wit’s end about this exact same dilemma.  Some just gave up on one or the other.  Either they would set up at shows and give up their shop, or they would keep their online shop open and give up shows.

I tried to make it work.  As items sold at the shows I would take a quick picture before I packed the jewelry off to our customers.  But then we would become to busy to take the shot.  I tried index cards, spread sheets and categorizing the trays.  Although not completely 100%, the most successful was to delete items from the shop using the iPad.  But when we had flurries of customers and sales this failed also.

I was ready to give up shows.  I couldn’t keep track of the jewelry inventory.

Jewelry Inventory

Ted says this shot looks like the opening of Star Wars IV.

But hold on, I’m happy to say that this story does have a successful end!

Last year Ted pointed out the fact that we now had enough inventory to do both.  It was very simple.  Hand forge jewelry that was listed in the shop would not go to shows.

That was it.  What was in the shop, stayed in the shop.  Jewelry inventory that was not in the shop could be taken to shows.  Happy us.  Or more precisely, happy me.

Jewelry InventoryI’ll share some tips in a future post about some other ways I’ve found to help keep our shop’s inventory organized.

Do any of you have ideas about keeping your jewelry inventory organized?  We would love to hear from you!  Please feel free to share your tips in comments below.

Well that’s it for today.  We are getting ready to set our booth up at a Renaissance Fair this weekend!  We’ve always had so much fun attending the Renaissance events but this will be the first time Gaelic Forge will be setting up as merchants!  I look forward to sharing pictures and letting you know how it went.

Stay cool and we’ll see you at the Gaelic Forge!




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