Dream Weaver Jewelry (and more!)

Just an artist making her way.


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Weddings … and their nightmares.

Years ago, my sister got married.

The bridal party was small; my other sister (yes there are three of us) as the Matron of Honor, my two nieces and myself as bridesmaids, and of course, our male counterparts/escorts.

My sister and I wore cinnamon, my nieces champaigne.

Our jewelry “requirement” was “simple, clear stones, silver” – matching if we could get it!

Ha ha ha… no.

What really happened? My nieces went shopping separately.  The MoH and I were in another state, and tried to find matching items, but she found something she liked and got it, and I wound up getting my jewelry the night before the wedding.

None of it matched.  None of it coordinated. Most of it looked AWFUL on us – when it looked lovely on the display.  My necklace was too short and almost choked me.  My earrings were too heavy.  My sister wound up with similar issues.  The bride’s necklace was a little too long and part of the pendant was hidden in her dress.  The earrings were tangled in her hair by the end of the night.

When I created the Spiral set, I started thinking to myself that wedding jewelry should match, be light, be to the bride’s specifications, coordinate if not match, and should be tiered.

The bride of course should shine, stand out – it’s her day after all!  The bridesmaids should have coordinating jewelry to each other and the bride, but much muted.  The MoH? In between.

It should also be affordable to not break the wedding party’s budget, and should not be a nightmare last minute for the party to find.

An old school friend contacted me after seeing my (unfinished) butterfly headdress/hair chain/net whatever thing, and asked if it could be done in a daisy motif.

My answer? “Of course!”

As I began work on the first proper bridal party set of headdresses, necklaces, earrings and bracelets, I started to wonder just how to do it all, and make it the tiered splendor it should be.  I have colors from the bride, the motif, and I’ve found it so much easier to do than I initially thought – apart from making several wire flowers (hand-tooled; I try not to use jigs much) that were size-uniform, but each unique in its own right.

Even as I worked on the first prototypes, I started to wish I could have done these things back when my sister got married.  Our jewelry would have coordinated, been what the bride wanted, and we wouldn’t have spent nearly as much as we did (which was almost the cost of the DRESSES – which I find a bit excessive), nor as much time scrambling to find something that worked.

My mission now?
To save other brides the nightmare we went through.  Prices of course are dependent on how complicated the design is, the materials, how large the bridal party is, etc., but still – how much would one spend at a name-brand designer for a matching/coordinating set – custom created for that bridal party?  Too much, I would think – possibly in the multiple thousands for some.
Especially since said name-brand designer wouldn’t want to fluctuate as far as materials or position of the bridal party member.  Make one, cast it, duplicate it.
… oh.. one of the bridesmaids is allergic to the metal the others are wearing? Too bad!  It’s extra to make it in something else.

The thought makes me ill.
Considering some companies DO care, I’m not going to say none of them do, but too many want extra money for having to make something in another material – even if the MATERIAL is the same price.
Too much mass-production for my tastes, especially if it’s something simple the party’s looking for – just.. matching or coordinating and custom design.

I just hope I can pull it off!  Not just for this old school friend who reconnected with me – but for other brides and their parties.
One less hassle, one less nightmare.
If I can take some of that pressure from them, it would bring me as much joy as I take in creating.

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Within.

We go though our day-to-day lives with very little thought to those around us.  We look at others and assume we know what they’re thinking.

This also happens online (I would know. I play World of Warcraft.) – the assumption that “Oh they’re a <insert profession here>, so they must be <generalized stereotype here>!”
I found out today that an old friend from my high school days has left the world.  I’d seen hints, but could find no information until I asked another school friend about it, one who is in the area. The rumor mill whispers “Suicide”.  I have no concrete information; I can’t find any, and it seems few have what information there is.

All the time I knew this person, he smiled, joked, made light of life itself, determined to cheer others, lift spirits, help others.  He was a Firefighter and an EMT, and at one point, checked me over after I was hit by a car at school (too minor for any kind of statement; suffered bruising that’s still on my legs, nothing more).  He once told me “don’t let the turkeys keep you down” in my yearbook.

He was a wonderful artist, though he kept to himself the outflow from mind to paper much of the time I’d been around him.
He was one of the few I knew that could remix and splice music back in 1995.  He was good with computers (or at least arguing with the technology we had to work with in the high school’s theatre), at least as far as I could see.

The last time I saw him, however, was not a happy time.  It was at the funeral of another friend – his ex-girlfriend, in fact.  The circumstances revolving around that are more complicated below the surface.
She had an asthma attack.  He was one of the responders.
The clearest memory I have of seeing him was hugging him and telling him clearly, “this wasn’t your fault”.
We promised to keep in touch.
I gave him my information.

And now… I hear this, ten years later.

 

An EMT, a Firefighter, a cheerful face, a joker, making light of life and focused on making others smile.
The assumption one might make of the man I knew would have been “He’s always so happy!”

What was on the inside?
What was within?
What happened in those ten years?

I always knew there was more behind the mask.  It was always in his eyes, no matter how much he smiled (genuinely, those smiles reached his eyes, have no doubt), made fun of things, and came up with jokes out of the blue.
I’d had a crush on him, years and years ago, even.  I always seemed to go for the ones who had the depth, and I wanted to know what made them tick… Looks didn’t much matter, even then, so long as the heart was good.  Not that I’m saying I haven’t had some lookers… my current is… while not “handsome”, rather attractive, with eyes like a bottomless abyss.  I have the fortunate opportunity to get behind that particular mask and see what lies within.

Others might be able to say more than I can about what lay within.
It was most certainly more than “He’s always so happy!”
Especially if the rumor mill whispers the truth.

It happened only a day ago, after all.  Information will come.
The shock, however, will stay.
I wish I had been there, I wish I had still been in touch…
Now I will never know if there was something I may have been able to do.

I have said in several places the same thing, and I have meant it in every way.
When I knew him, he was one of the few who reached out a hand, figuratively or literally, to one of the most hated people at the school.  He made me smile in the face of constant bullying.  He gave me strength with a smile, a word, a gesture.  An EMT was fitting for him, a healer in heart and soul, aiding others and lighting their mood even through his own darkness.

The world has lost a heart of gold.

I promise… I will never let the turkeys keep me down.


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Now that’s out of the way…

I assume you’ve realized that this blog is about jewelry.

Not just any jewelry, mind you, but jewelry that is hand made, by me.

However, I would like to point out that this is also a move, for me, from blogger, where the format and such got to be a bit of a hassle.

Starting over fresh this Spring, I’m hoping to update with not only shiny things that I create, but I would also like to showcase others’ work, as I had done in the past – and this time, not just in a seasonal way, and as before, not just with jewelry.

My goal here is to bring the importance of hand-crated items and the quality they represent back to the foreground, as over the years, mass-produced and machine-made have become the norm in our disposable society.  There are some things that are better when made by machines, but other things that you can only find when they are created by one person, with their own two loving hands and the tools of their trade.

What you will find here:
My jewelry (of course! when I make something new, I like to show it off, of course!)
The work of others (Why just show off my work when there are lots of others out there who love what they create?)
Soapboxes (Not literally; I tend to wax eloquent when trying to educate others on the difference between hand-crafted and machine-made items.)
Random odds and ends (I am human, and I don’t just chill and make jewelry; I have other hobbies as well, as well as emotions and life events, etc.)