Tuesday, March 2, 2010

A Bracelet for Villa

My sister-in-law, Villa, was diagnosed a year ago with leukemia. She lives with her husband in Washington state, a continent away from us. She is currently undergoing chemotherapy again to regain remission status but the ultimate prognosis is uncertain. So I cast about for a way to let her know that Douglas and I are thinking of her every day, that we send our positive energy and our love her way. I thought about making her a bracelet, something she could wear and think of us when we couldn't be there in person, something that might bring a smile to her face when things get tough.

As I was thinking of how I would do this, I remembered that this past summer I was invited to participate in a bracelet round-robin exchange with several talented designers, ultimately ending with a piece that I cherish more because of the wonderful energy in it and the generosity of the participants in giving of their time and talent than the monetary value of the finished item. So I thought of a way to kick that idea up a notch-- invite mostly total strangers to contribute a charm to make a bracelet for Villa.

Here's what I would like: Contribute a charm that is handmade by you-- that's the only stipulation. The charms can be anything, any theme, any color, any material, any technique but about 1” X 1/2” would be ideal. Send your creation to me and then I'll attach it to a nice chain that will become a charm bracelet with everybody's charm on it. The energy created in making the charm is what I'm after-- it doesn't have to be perfect, or expensive or elaborate. It could be resin, or metal or polymer clay or fiber or layered paper. My friends Cindy Wimmer and Barbara Lewis have already sent me their charms-- see the photos below for examples.

Charm by Barbara Lewis of Painting with Fire

Charm by Cindy Wimmer of Sweet Bead Studio

Now I really love the concept of the “random act of kindness” and I have a pretty good idea of the kind of people I'm writing to out there so I know that a carrot isn't necessary to encourage you to participate.

But I want to offer some items for a giveaway in gratitude for those of you who would like to contribute to the piece. I'll use a random number generator to pick the three winners.

Here's what I'm giving away to say “thank you” for helping me to make this piece really special for Villa.

Jane Eyre cuff

Metro earrings

Set of Bumblebeads, 15mm

The deadline for contributions is Monday, March 22, 2010. E-mail me at cdamm1@myfairpoint.net if you plan to send a charm and I'll e-mail you my address back as I'd rather not broadcast that over the Internet! If I receive more than 50 or so charms, I'll collect them and pass them on to someone who wants to do a similar “kindness” bracelet for a friend who needs one. If you have your own blog, it would be wonderful if you would tell your readers about this-- just a short note-- to direct them over here where they can find the information.

I will keep you all updated on the progress of the bracelet and post pictures of the completed piece when I get ready to send it off to Villa. I'll do the drawing for the gifts from me the first week of April and announce the winners in a blog post. Thanks, everyone!