Jewelry Stories

nymag jewelry
Besides Twitter my main source of news is NY Mag which I receive in the mail every other week and then proceed to rarely read. So I’m pretty much NOT up on any sort of current event. But this week I actually opened my NY Mag and found this article about women, jewelry, and their life stories. If you have read my blog for any length of time you know I am all about this.

This article started me wondering why do we do this? Why do we attach emotions to objects? Is it sentimentality? Or nostalgia? Or the human urge to tell stories and these objects are our props, like memory triggers? Do you do this with your objects, jewelry or what have you? I know Stories of Objects does, as does Sabiscuit because like me they both actively collect and catalog their objects with stories. But do you? Do we all? Even if you don’t blog about it, do you have your special symbolic somethings with stories? What are they? I’m curious.

Also? Happy Valentine’s day.

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Frayed Manilla

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Manillas. That’s the word for the bangle currency that came out of West Africa. It’s derived from the Spanish manella (bracelet) and Portuguese (hand-ring).

Inspired by the above Fray comic (those 3 bangles on her wrist? Sils, a type of currency in the Fray universe) I was planning to write an interesting post about the history of bangles being used for currency. Thus, some wiki-style research introduced me to manillas. But it turns out this history is fucking depressing and sad as shit.

Manillas are horse-shoe like bangles. Manillas, also referred to as “slave trade money”… 8 to 10 of which purchased a slave.

In Burkina Faso they used these beauties below.

In the Cote d’Ivoire:

Man, I don’t even have any kind of decent insights. This just makes me sad.

I found all the manilla images at Hammill Gallery and the photos are credited Tim Hammill. The top image is from the Fray comic put out by Dark Horse.

I Now Hate TWD

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Holy guacamole. I had this great idea at the start of the last night’s The Walking Dead episode to write about Tyrese’s conflicting statements about destiny then later about choices and freewill. Which all kind of ties up with ‘what makes a zombie’. Where zombies are pure destiny, lacking any freewill. The zombie apocalypse world is fully destiny driven, and even the survivors are stripped of the feeling of ‘choice’. Yet Tyrese seems to rage against this.

I think this psychological struggle occurs in many survivors. After my accident I negotiated between the two all the time: destiny vs. freewill. If I had just left the house two minutes earlier, if I hadn’t ridden my bike that morning, if I had only done everything differently, I wouldn’t feel like I shouldn’t be alive. (I’ve moved on from that- don’t worry about me. Therapy! Yay!)

So I was thinking along these lines while watching the show. But then? Shitballs.
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I can’t even. I won’t spoil anything but I’ve spent the past twelve hours shaking my head.
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Nice retooled intro though, right? And how annoying was it that the Talking Dead didn’t come on until 11? I fell asleep before then and now can’t find it on demand. Ugh. Anyway, destiny fucking sucks.

Fishbone ring by Wilhelmina Garcia
Skull bangle by Stephanie von Watzdorf
Skeleton bangle by Steve McQueen

Toasted Hot Dog Bun

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Our house is so empty of groceries that I had a toasted hot dog bun for breakfast. I told my mom about it and almost began crying. TOASTED HOT DOG BUN!

Today’s bangles: Swarovski crystal bangles, gem charm bracelet from my mom, agate bangle, Tiffany’s hearts. The agate and Swarovski ones are for sale HERE, use the promo code BathSense20 to get -20% off.

5 Day Countdown!

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Under what rock have I been that I didn’t realize The Walking Dead comes back in FIVE DAYS! First I found a quarter and now this! Everything is going my way today.

Today’s bangles: black Clic-Clac, two little Native American cuffs of mine from back in the day, my lucky figa charm bracelet, and the Fontaine de Bartholdi skinny bangle.

Too Obscene

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The other day Nad of HugsXHearts asked me exactly how many bracelets I have. I jokingly answered “ONE MILLION!” But then I started thinking about it. I might actually have one million bracelets. It’s more than a bit obscene. See the pic above? That’s them. About a million seems right, right? Anyway the thing with my collection is most all are gifts (one exception being the albatross ivory bangle). Each has a story and special significance. Most are from my dad and with his death I find even cooking the pasta from his pantry breaks my heart. I am foolishly sentimental with everything so I could never give away or sell any of my collection.

“But Margaret,” you might be saying, “I have definitely seen bracelets on your wrist that are not in that lot of one million bracelets.”

Well, you would be right. When I buy myself a bracelet (most always second hand) it is with the knowledge that I am the temporary guardian of it. It’s the capitalist in me, I suppose. I buy books with the intent to sell them back to the second hand store. Ditto clothing. Ditto jewelry. The great thing with owning a store, I can sell these items more easily than most people.

Also with a collection it somehow feels like cheating to just go out and buy an item. That makes it too easy. I have maybe 3 Hermes bangles that I bought for myself. Those 3 leave me with an empty feeling because there is no story to them.

Do you have a collection? What does it mean to you? How do you go about adding to it? I know Nad’s got some rings galore.

I’m Easy 1.24.15

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So I think I mentioned a couple times in passing how I’m now listing jewelry on Chairish.com. Like the Rhodonite bangles in the above photo (the dark rose colored ones) and so I thought I’d tell you guys that I’m a terrible negotiator. Chairish has a “make an offer” option and, hypothetically, if anybody likes the things I’ve listed on there? Well, make me an offer. It’s not that I “can’t” refuse so much as I pretty much “don’t” refuse. I am so lucky my dating life is long over.

Today’s bangles: Rhodonite bangles (coming soon to my Chairish.com listing, the last Hermes bangle from my dad, and two horn bangles.

And yes, my two dogs are back there hiding from the BIG NAUGHTY DOG.

Again? Yes, Again 1.23.2015

My apologies in advance. I have this stupid digital camera at my shop so I figured “what the heck, I’ll give you all some more of my face.” Then I filmed myself with something sticking me in the eye.

Here’s the basic script for those who can’t watch videos:
-Greeting
-Something sticks me in the eye (probably my own bangs)
-Bracelets
-Long shot of my collarbone as I fumble with the off switch

Just call me Maya Deren already and give me an Oscar. Side note, did Maya Deren ever get an Oscar? Also, I’m selling two of the bracelets on Chairish.com. The rhinestone bangle here and the turquoise and pink pearl one here