Sunday, February 7, 2010

fashion favorite: charm-ing bracelet


my grandmother rowie's charm bracelet is one of my most treasured possessions. she started it herself, as a new beginning and a gift to herself. i loved the jangle she made, and how we would sit and talk with her about the story behind each charm. a lot of the charms were collected on her travels and others were just gifts from my mum to mark occasions.


pictured below are closer views of the bracelet...

a bell (from capri), a lion (from trafalgar square, london), the little mermaid (from denmark), an outback 'dunny' (er, an out-house), a heart, a clog (from the netherlands), an echidna, an easter bunny, the leaning tower of pisa, a dice (from vegas), a christmas tree, a chili

a tasmanian devil, a razor blade, a globe, a bucket of ice and champagne (60th birthday), scissors, an abacus, a bear (from berlin), a bee

a junk boat (from hong kong), a thimble, a pagoda, an apple (from tasmania, australia), buddha, a clover leaf (from ireland), a virgin mary, a horseshoe and clover leaf

rowie was a fabulous woman. she was attractive, witty, and elegant in a style all of her own. she was a hostess to die for, and always loved trying new things. after getting divorced in 1979, at the age of 50 she embarked on a trip around the world and it was on this trip that she collected a lot of her charms. i find that so inspiring, and so typical of rowie, that she up and went out in search of a new adventure. she travelled to america, and mexico, europe, england and ireland, japan and hong kong. i still have the postcards she sent my parents, and she made the most of everywhere she visited. i love that my grandma ate snake and climbed a volcano but then talked about high fashion shopping in new york!

this charm bracelet is a documentation of a chapter in her life that was all about her. these charms weren't for protection, they were to remind her of the good times and achievements all of her own. she seemed fearless, independent, and always did her own thing her way. i think of these qualities when i wear her charm bracelet in hope that it will evoke the same spirit in me. at the very least, the bracelet's jingling brings me right back to sitting on her lap and talking.

from sepharial's book of charms and talismans, published by foulsham, london

a charm bracelet is so simple, but elegant and a beautiful thing to leave behind. do you have one? did you inherit it or are you building it yourself, as a little biography on your wrist? if you don't have one, why not start a new one to celebrate the new decade!



10 comments:

pepe newton said...

that is a beautiful piece pilgrim! My niece turned 18 yesterday and she was really excited when she got 2 new charms for her bracelet... I hope her charms will be as interesting and exotic as Rowie's in 40 years time
Pepe x

tinypaperheart said...

that's so special :)

Apothecary Fox said...

I wish I could have something so detailed and alive as this from my Granny. I love charm bracelets and do have one but boxed it up for my move so haven't seen It in months. The story they can tell fascinates me. Beautiul piece. X

Allison said...

What an absolutely beautiful post Pilgrim. I found myself being swept away by your story. How beautiful to have such a treasure from your grandmother. Sounds like she was a wonderful women and amazing role model.

vineeta said...

WOW wow wow!!!!what a super gorgeous bracelet and what a super gorgeous post! I love your design work & typography, but what I loved most was what you shared about your granny- what a kickass woman! Respect.

Art Wall Katie said...

What a special gift. Rowie, what a darling name, is it a nickname?

Pilgrim Lee said...

vineeta - thanks! she was indeed a kick ass woman :)

art wall katie - rowie is a nickname, her name was roma, and she was never your 'conventional' grandma, so i called her rowie instead of 'granny' etc. i've met other women who ARE just called 'rowie' though, so there you go!

Dottie from ModernKiddo said...

Is it rather naughty that I sent this link to my husband with a nudge re: my upcoming birthday?

I've been wanting one for awhile and this is just the needed kick to do it!

Hurrah for Pilgrim!

frauheuberg said...

hej pilgrim,
wow...this post is really touched...so fine that you share it with us...and what a wonderful "memory" for you...;)...and your quote is so beautiful...i don´t know what to say...this really inspire me...thanks...cheers ines from the BYW...

Miss B said...

THIS WAS GREAT!!! I loved the photo's and your sweet words, great job!

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