After blogging for 10 years, I finally got around to launching my Wendy Brandes Jewelry YouTube channel in April! Here are a few of the year’s most significant videos, including the first one, which was actually recycled from something I’d done for the JCK jewelry trade show in 2016.
More entertaining, in my opinion, was the candid video that I posted a couple of days later. This was taken by my gorgeous jewelry-designer friend Julie Lamb, who was impressed that I chatted calmly throughout an ear piercing.
I didn’t start shooting and posting on a weekly basis until May, when I nervously shot this official “welcome to my channel” video. I wanted to make it clear that, as with my blog, I would be talking about much more than jewelry.
Getting that video done was painful, but people swore I’d improve with practice. Now, apparently, I’ve improved so much that my right-hand woman Eryn insists I must do a new, more relaxed intro video. Humph. If I’d known practice was going to create more work, I might have played hooky.
My most-viewed video thus far is from the same awkward month. The lesson we learned: If you have “mini skirts” in your video title, a few hundred leg men will show up. They were probably disappointed to find me talking about “homegrown vintage” rather than wearing my tiny leather mini from the 1990s.
In June, I began a series of videos answering frequently asked questions about vintage clothes.
There are four installments of that so far. Here are the links to the next three videos.
- FAQ: Collecting vintage clothes, part 2
- FAQ: Collecting vintage clothes, part 3
- FAQ: Collecting vintage clothes, part 4
If you have a question about vintage fashion that I haven’t answered yet, leave it in the comments here or on YouTube.
The highlight of my July video output isn’t from one of our in-office shoots. Instead, it’s my friend Monica Stephenson’s clip of me accepting the Women’s Jewelry Association’s Award for Excellence for design. I love the little noise she makes when I mention her in my speech!
Speaking of jewelry design, I launched the Wendy Brandes Wedding Collection in August.
Also in August, during a video about designer Stephen Sprouse, I gave a little history lesson on rap music AND “rapped” a part of Blondie’s 1980s song “Rapture.” I put “rapped” in quotes because when I sent the link to my gorgeous rapper friend Gangsta Boo, she was like, “Oh, I thought you were just talking!” Don’t miss the outtakes at the end.
Do you worry about how to clean your fine jewelry or where to get it repaired? In September, I offered advice in this video.
Author Syl Tang came over in October to talk about her new book, Disrobed, over drinks.
I had another guest in November: Initiatives in Art and Culture’s founder and president, Lisa Koenisberg. Listen to me trying to pronounce Lisa’s last name correctly! Thanks for being a good sport, Lisa.
Earlier this month, I did a video about a custom engagement ring I designed, and gave other engagement-ring-related advice, as I’m wont to do.
My final video for December 2017 is one that I did to mark my half-century birthday. When I first watched this, I was like, “Eryn, why do you hate the top of my head?” She claimed she had deliberately prioritized keeping my amazing bosom centered in the frame, even if it meant sacrificing my scalp. Cool story, sis! For your next trick, explain the stepladder lurking in the background.
Anyway, here’s what I had to say about getting older! (Important takeaway for young people: It gets better.)
I must thank Eryn wholeheartedly for all of her work on our video efforts. I do like to tease her here on the blog, but that’s only because she is so diligent that I’m amused by the rare instances when things go awry (a missing head here, an imploding box there, the occasional inaudible interview). But Eryn is the one who schedules the video shoot dates and release dates; helps me come up with topics; studies equipment and software; and does all the shooting and editing. Dang, the woman was ready to do my makeup if called upon! All I do is sit down and try not to stumble over my words.
I’d also like to point out that there are more jobs than you might think where a person can have a legitimate reason to comment on someone else’s body parts! Eryn truly was concentrating on the camera as I adjusted the zipper on the birthday video’s corset top. (Too high? Too low? Can you see the necklace? Is the necklace straight?) It is possible to discuss appearance-related matters without being harassing or rubbing one’s body parts on an unwilling colleague. That’s my important work advice for y’all today: Say “Looks good, we’re rolling” instead of “booooooooooooobies” and keep all of your own body parts inside your clothes if your job does not require them to be free range! (Bonus tip: Always do a soundcheck when recording.)