Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Story of a Jewelry Box

We were in the Midwest for a very particular reason, my boyfriend and I. We had gone to see his grandmother in Salem, Illinois. I love the small towns in the Midwest. They are good to visit because everyone is so warm and welcoming. It reminds you of a place you are returning to, forgetting when you left and why.

It was too hot and humid to do much outside, so we stayed indoors and looked through photographs, played with old toys, baked cookies, and took in Grandma's many handcrafted projects. This woman is so talented, dabbling in macrame, needlepoint, quilting and jewelry making.

In fact, she had two boxes of beads, findings and other supplies that had remained untouched for a few years. I was extremely honored and flattered when she handed them over to me. As I looked through their contents I felt as if I was really getting to look through the life of another. Bead colors and shapes, half-started projects, buckles and wires can sometimes fill in the blanks left by photo albums.It's moments like this where I am reminded that the path was paved long ago for me to be the person I am today. Jewelry, art and crafting have truly opened up so many stories, memories and relationships in my life. I gladly accepted the boxes and the rings pictured above. I love wearing vintage rings. In fact, the majority of my collection was my grandmother's, and now I have these from Nathan's grandmother as well. I love that these are the souvenirs I took home with me from our trip.

On Saturday I met up with my sister and happily gave her many of the findings and supplies. She makes more jewelry than I do and I wanted to make sure everything was kept in the family. There's something so special about jewelry that is passed between generations and among tight circles. I am so grateful to have gotten to take part in this visit and in this exchange; to get to know such a lovely woman. I can't wait to see what legacy my sister will leave for her children or what things will be left for me to pass down. Things to think about as we move on to our next creation ...


  1. This story is so cute, it made my day!

    La Kat

  2. Love this post, I feel the same way about jewelry and the stories it tells. The first ring I fell in love with was a ring my father gave my mother when they were dating. I still have it and wear it!

  3. Oh Beth!
    What a lucky GAL you are! That Nathan's Grandmother gave you her beads and baubles!
    Worth cherishing!

    It is now after many years have past and having a generation of kids of my own... that I would have loved to have my mothers "old" sewing machine and such. I have one gorgeous porcelain plate! I cherish it still!

    The midwest is so beautiful... and yes can be so humid. Happy when I am there, but home is still here, with the ocean breeze - breath...

    Miss the "eyecandy" in your banner, but also love the new look!

    Have a lovely week!


  4. Hello Beth,

    How special is that! What a lovely vintage collection of beads and baubles, I know your sister will create some beautiful pieces with beads like that. Love the knotted rings.

    sweet story

    Janet xox
    The Empty Nest