January 28, 2016

Turning Point Jewelry

My stash of glass beads my brother made. Always in view on my bench.

Tucked into a corner of my jeweler’s bench is a pile of beads strung on a hemp cord. But, they’re not your run-of-the-mill lampworked beads. These particular beads were made by my brother, David (see my previous post). David died three years ago, and though I’m past my hemp-necklace-wearing days, I keep them on my bench. Yeah, they get in my way sometimes, but it’s important to me that they stay there where I can see them every day.

The original "Turning Point" bracelet with David's beads
It’s that desire to see them/him every day that led me to utilize them in a bracelet I could wear all day, every day, as a way to honor him and keep him with me. Thinking about how life can change in an instant, turning from a set path to an altogether different direction, I designed a bangle with multiple pivot points. These joins allow for movement and flexibility in the bracelet itself, but also serve the purpose of holding David’s beads securely on the segments. The flared ends of each segment lock the beads in place, never to let them (or him) go. I’ve made a number of variations of this style since then (get one for yourself here!) and they’re one of my best selling products. But, the one with David’s beads, that one’s mine.

My mom's necklace with one of David's bead.

I made my mom a similar pendant using one of David’s beads. I like the simplicity of the design. A bead that, to the person out-of-the-know, is simply “pretty.” Suspended on a teardrop-shaped hand-formed and textured sterling silver wire, and topped with an oval bail. It means a lot, yet doesn’t scream out its hidden meaning.


If you’re thinking “Ooh! I’d love something like that!” then stay tuned. Starting soon, I’m going to be offering a custom service for designing your own “Turning Point” jewelry to commemorate a birth, death, big event, adoption, or anything you can think of! I know not everyone has beads they want to memorialize in jewelry form, but I have a wealth of knowledge and experience working with non-traditional materials. What can I do with, say, a scrap of fabric from your grandmother’s quilt, or a piece of cement from the first home you purchased. What about the first baby quilt you ever received? Or the sand from a memorable vacation. The possibilities are endless! Just as it’s important for me to keep a bit of my brother with me, I want to help you keep your memories alive. Make sure to “like” my business page on Facebook, and sign up to follow this blog for the latest news!

2 comments:

  1. Your blog and your jewelry are fabulous, Annie. You have inspired me greatly! I'm sorry for your losses. A broken heart always leaves a scar, it seems; but there's strength in those scars, too. xo

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  2. These ideas are wonderful! I think we all have "something" we keep of memory... I believe this can be a big selling point! I love the bead bracelet & it's memory.

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