I remember being in elementary school, through junior high, making these necklaces out of seed beads, fishing line, and safety pins. It was a business, a marketing tool, an image. I had so many of them, I could coordinate most any outfit. I was even turning my friends on to them too. It was fun. I liked the process. I liked getting my folks to venture into the craft section of Wal-Mart to let me pick out new beads and value bags of safety pins. I liked that people would see some of my necklaces and be jealous and have to have one to, at a price.
I even remember going on a school field trip in 7th grade, I think, to this behind in the times reenactment place. I was bored out of my mind until I ran across the little lady pretending to make beads. She had this jar full of beads in front of her. I would never believe she had really made them herself, but that was beside the point. I saw beads. I saw beads no one else at school had. I saw my classmates laughing at me for buying beads from a woman in a bonnet with a sleeping German shepherd. Seriously, I saw beads that were going to be so turn of the century cheap I could do some major damage. And, I did. I bought a handful and went home and made some pretty fantastic junior high quality necklaces. Sold out in no time.
I should have known. I was a trendsetter. I did what I wanted and didn't apologize for it. I liked that about young me. I can remember in 8th grade jellies, the plastic shoe, came back in style. Wow, I was so excited. I loved jellies when I was young, younger. I begged my mom for two weeks, until she finally bought me some on sale at Target. They were old school sandal type, clear with a woven top and low ankle strap. AMAZING! I went home and pulled out my best crazy printed socks and matched up a Monday outfit. I was so ready for school. I remember being caught off guard when everyone teased me on Monday. It wasn't bad teasing, but obviously they thought it was a joke. Hell nah, I was super serious! I kept it up. Everyday I had a new fab outfit, crazy sock, and clear jellies sandals. Everyday that week, I stepped out like a runway model. Everyday that week some ultra popular, my shit don't stink, girl had something to say. I did not care. I had fought my mom for those shoes and I would wear them to death. So when the week ended I felt that I had really accomplished something. I had stared down a lion, dressed as a 8th grade girl. The next Monday every laughing commenting 8th, and trying to be cool 7th, grade girl were walking down the halls in multi colored jellies or crazy jellies and sock combinations. I was furious. Posers!
That's who I am. I do what I think is fashion. I am a creative force and I like to live it. Because that's what style is. It's what fashion means. It's the opportunity to blur lines and interpret things the way you want. The only thing that matters is fit and appropriateness.
All this to say, I love my jewels. I love the way they make me feel and the statement they make. I love how accomplished I feel when I create them or when I wear them. I love being creative. I thank God for this blessing. It's AMAZING!
Little did I know, many never to be counted, years ago I had discovered my destiny.