It's a frequent problem for beaders, people look at our jewelry and say "I could get that cheaper at Wal-Mart/Target/wherever." I never realized how true that was, as I almost always either make my own jewelry or look for handmade. But today I went to World Market, because a friend of mine said they had a lot of belly dancer-y earrings, and I thought maybe I'd look for something to wear to the recital*.
All of their jewelry was on sale for 4.99. Seriously! Sets of bangles, chandelier earrings that hang down to your shoulders, chunky rings, jingly necklaces, all 4.99. Sure, the materials are a lot cheaper than what I use, pot metal and Indian glass instead of Sterling and Swarovski, but a lot of people don't care about that. They care about getting 4 or 5 pairs of chandeliers for the price that I charge for one pair.
I had to indulge myself. I bought a huge pair of black and silver hoop earrings, some green and brass chandeliers, and two sets of bangle bracelets. I would have bought so much more, except I really shouldn't be shopping at all with the holidays around the corner. But honestly. Cheap sparkly things. How could I resist?
*For the longest time I thought I could only wear titanium and niobium, but Anne Mitchell was right, fine silver is doing great in my ears, so I'm going to hang the cheap $5 earrings from fine silver wires. There's something wrong with that!