Jewelry with a Story Behind It
Theresa wrote to me in December 2008 to ask me about making memorial bracelets for her best childhood friend, Cindy Zarzycki, who disappeared at the age of 13 in 1986 and was never seen again. Finally, in 2008, after 23 years, her killer was brought to justice, Cindy's grave was located, and the family could at last have closure. Theresa had the bracelets made as Christmas gifts for Cindy's family and friends, with one bracelet going into Cindy's grave. The bracelets were made of pearls, for her birthday in June; clear crystals for her death in April and the beginning of her life in heaven; a ruby crystal for July, the month she was found; a citrine crystal for November, when she was laid to rest; and a silver angel charm to represent Cindy herself.
Cindy was murdered by her boyfriend's father. For 23 years, he kept her missing person flyer in a keepsake box. Now he will spend the rest of his life in jail. In 2009, there was a story about Cindy on NBC's Dateline. You can google her name for more reports and information. I am honored that Theresa asked me to create these bracelets and to help memorialize Cindy.
Sandy was madly in love, and had a playful plan for his wedding proposal. His girlfriend had said she would not accept anything less than 50 karats, so he asked for my help in creating a necklace of "the vegetable kind of karat". We both searched for carrot beads, but Sandy found them first, and bought 50 of them, but they were only available in silver. He sent them to me, and I alternated them with clear crystals, then sent the finished necklace and earrings to Sandy. He then decided the necklace had to be gold, so he took it to a jeweler who dismantled it, and plated the carrots with 23kt gold! Sandy returned them to me to remake the necklace. From start to finish, Sandy and I had a lot of fun with this project, and communicated with lots of emails containing carrot jokes and puns.
Being a true romantic, Sandy also wrote a song for the proposal. One verse goes:
Our love is deep as the ocean
It shines brightly as the sun
For we are destined to be
Living our lives as one
We started the day with a morning drive to the top of a mountain to take in the breathtaking scenery. We then drove down to the beach and had brunch at a romantic restaurant overlooking the ocean. I presented her with the box, and she thought the carrot necklace and earrings were sooooo cute! She still didn't make the connection though, and had no idea I was about to propose. I asked her to count the carrots. She laughed so hard as she started counting one by one. As she reached 50, I went down on one knee and presented her with the ring and asked her to marry me. Tears ran down her cheeks as she said "YES". It was a very special moment which we will cherish for years to come! Thank you for being part of this day.
Dave was going on a first date with a wonderful girl, and he wanted to bring her something special. He knew her favorite flowers were sterling roses, but could not find any of these dusky purple flowers at local florist shops. Instead, he presented her with this necklace I custom made for the occasion, featuring a huge sterling silver rose pendant on a strand of silver pearls and purple lampwork beads. I rushed it off by overnight delivery, and he received it just in time for the date! Dave wrote, "I just wanted to thank you for making such a wonderful gift for me to give to my new friend.... I'm crazy about her and the necklace is just beautiful around her neck.... It seems to have this incredible energy about it."
Even his date wrote to me, saying, "I just wanted to thank you soooo much. WOW!!! No other words do it justice. It"s like you knew me before you made it. I just wanted to let you know how wonderful it made me feel!"
The couple went their separate ways, and are now happy in new relationships, but she did write to Dave that she is still enjoying the necklace!
Irene's friend is a second grade teacher who had a particularly great group of kids last year that she called her "Smarties". They made it the teacher's best year ever. Irene commissioned this bracelet for the children to give their teacher on the last day of school to remember them by. The colored enamel discs, which look like the famous "Smarties" candies, represent the children. The other charms are sterling, and represent some of the teacher's favorite things ... cherries, books, roses, and cowboy hats and boots, all of which I rounded up from various sources for the project, and attached them all to some nice, heavy sterling chain. Thanks to Irene, the lucky teacher was surprised and teary-eyed when the children presented her with this colorful gift, and she loved it!