I remember the first time I ever saw a charm bracelet. I was a young child and I was standing in a store with my mother. Beside me stood a very pretty, well-dressed woman. As she moved her hand I caught a view of her bracelet, which was just at the right height to be in my line of vision.
The bracelet was one of the loveliest things I’d ever seen. It was chock-full of tiny charms and in the short time she stood there, I especially remember seeing a thimble, a tea-pot and a camera. There were so many more, but these are the ones that caught my eye. I thought they were adorable.
Years later I worked with a woman who wore a charm bracelet. I spent ages poring over the precious little shapes while she told me what each one meant to her.
She had received the bracelet and two charms (shaped like a little balloon and a birthday cake) for her twelfth birthday and every year since then, her mother had bought her a new charm to symbolise something that was important to her at that stage in her life.
Image courtesy of Wikimedia Commons
Some of the other charms I remember are: a book, a pair of glasses, a wishbone, a sewing machine and a kitten. I was amazed that this beautiful piece of jewelry told the story of her life and it was obvious that she got a kick out of telling people about it.
I loved the idea so much that I asked my mother for a charm bracelet for my next birthday. I got the bracelet, but never kept up collecting the charms. It has been so many years since then that I don’t know what ever happened to it. I still have a few charms that I wear on a chain, but as charm-bracelets fell out of fashion, so did my desire to do anything more about it.
Image courtesy of Ebay
In my small collection at the moment I have a shamrock (to symbolize my Irish heritage,) a crab (my star sign,) a turtle (just because I love them,) a chicken (same reason,) a money-bag (my Chinese lucky symbol,) and a tiny likeness of Quan Yin the Goddess of Compassion and charity.
If I were to continue this collection today, I would probably add a book and pen, something to reflect my life in the country, something to do with classical music and something to signify my grandparenthood.
If you were to put a charm bracelet together now, I wonder what charms you would choose?
I have a gold charm bracelet. I think I got it for my 21st. I used to buy charms from the crop unties I visited, but i can't remember buying 1 from Turkey. My Mum bought me 6 or 7 from Hong Kong, but they weren't really gold. She also gave me a green heart, thinking it was jade, but then thought it may be only plastic. My mum gave me a real gold apple charm though, when I got married. Some countries I have visited didn't have a jewellery store. I don't wear mine anymore either, as it's too heavy now, & gets tangled in my cloths! And also, as you say, Colleen, "They've gone out of style"!