My creative thrills come more vicariously now, through our customers and our design department. I supervise video, photography, website and graphic design, and, of course our two wonderful jewelry designers, Andrea and Kathleen. To them, I flatter myself, I am a gently exhortative muse, the Tim Gunn to their creative process. "Great color palette, but I want more strands!" "Step back and look at the necklace from 10 feet away before you decide...." And of course, "Can somebody please make some more bracelets?" If our designers have a different view of my assistance, they have never said a word to me....
This year, trying to break my 5-year streak of Amazon e-gift certificate giving, I thought of a way to at least give my two young nieces some jewelry, complete with modern interactive features.
Genuine Pandora beads can cost hundreds of dollars each, putting them out of the reach of most of us. So it is no wonder that dozens of competing brands of interchangeable beads have sprung up. It is now quite easy to find attractive and original large-hole beads that cost under three dollars each.
I decided to take advantage of our large-hole bead inventory to make some 'Pandora-style' bracelets for my young nieces. I browsed our website, channeling my inner little girl. Shopping for those beads was FUN! Themes of pink, flowers, bling, butterflies, hearts, peace signs and smiley faces seemed right to me. Fat beads, spacer beads, dangling charms, they all had to be there. It was a little too easy to get a big selection in my cart, and I had to do a little editing before I was done.
Once my order was in my hands, I put together my own pandora-style charms by attaching cute silver-plated charms to charm-hanger beads with the included jump rings. Each niece is getting a charm with her initial on it, so their bracelets will be even more personal. Each girl is also getting some extra beads - so the younger girl will have fun choosing her favorites and the older girl can choose beads to match her outfits. I chose high-quality black rubber bracelets over solid Sterling for the practicality and price point. The clasp assembly is Sterling, and if the screw-off end should get lost, well, we have extras in stock.
I think these are fun gifts for young girls. While I wouldn't give something like this to anyone younger than six, I can tell you that a lot of grown-ups in the offices loved these bracelets too. For the more elegant among us, there are many beads and bracelets available that are more sophisticated.
PS: To my sisters-in-law--please do not show this blog to your daughters if the packages haven't arrived yet!