While I was working as a costume shop manager in Kentucky for the last several years, I got to know a wonderful dance professor named Lisa. She always seems to be more full of energy and fantastic stories than anyone else. I've often joked that she is my Fairy Godmother of Fun, swooping in to pull me out of my everyday routine, into an adventure at a moments notice. While Lisa adored her students in KY as much as I did mine, she longed to return to the home of her heart, California. After a few years of looking, she found a new position teaching there, and is moving away this month. While I'm thrilled for her, I'm also going to miss her terribly. Her going away clearly called for a charm bracelet designed just for her and her dream of a new adventure in California.
I started with the idea of the dream of California as part of the American consciousness. The idea that anyone can start anew there, can find their best self in this golden state of sunshine and promise. And yes, the Mamas and the Papas did come to mind. The idea of longing for the sun and warmth of California on a cloudy day.
The charms include a map of California, a dreamcatcher, disks that say "dream", shells, a surfboard, sun tan lotion and a palm tree from the beach, peace signs, grapes and a wine glass, a film canister, the bear and star from the state flag, a sandal, and of course the sun.
The beads are a mix of Czech glass and semi precious stones in shades of ocean blue, azure sky, plum wine, sand, and golden sunshine. Since Cali has always had it's share of the hippy vibe, I included aquamarine which is thought to help connect you to your spiritual being, dragon veins agate to heighten creativity and protect against bad dreams, and purple jade to attract love to your life. I can't wait to send it to her once she moves in a few weeks. (Because everyone deserves to have gifts arrive by mail when they move into a new place!) And even more, I can't wait till we could afford to go visit.
Meanwhile... I'm working on another travel bracelet already. This one is a custom order for a woman who lives here in Nashville, commemorating all the traveling she has done around the world. And she's been EVERYWHERE! I couldn't believe the list of places on the list she sent me, and will be lucky if I ever get to see a handful of them. Since the last charms finally arrived today, I'm hoping to get the bead pins worked out this afternoon. Here's a peek at the charms.