Thursday, March 19, 2009

OK ... On a roll here ... Another Article!

Why Charm Bracelets are Much More than Ordinary Jewelry

By: Robert Edwards

To many people jewelry is part of their wardrobe. Everyone has their favorite pieces. Sometimes a ring or necklace can have a special, personal meaning because it was a gift.

These items are usually designed to be worn as-is. Charm bracelets are very different.

Over time, charm bracelets grow. They can become collections unto themselves. And they take on the personal nature of the owner. Many have charms depicting an endless variety of themes. People build sea themed bracelets with shells, sailboats and anchors. Or animal jewelry, with tiny giraffes, lions and bears connected to the chain links. We've seen career theme bracelets, and even one with a heart collection.

Charms are available in many types. One of the more popular categories is sports including golf, tennis, baseball, soccer, football, basketball, hockey, equestrian and more. Music is another, with musical instruments, notes and clefs. The holiday theme is popular with different bracelets for Halloween, St. Patrick's Day and Christmas. Even food is represented, with pizza, candy bars, hamburgers and veggies. The variety is simply amazing!

Collections can grow over many years. It is a long standing tradition in many families to add a charm to a bracelet over time as a holiday or birthday gift. This is almost like attaching memories that celebrate each birthday, holiday or special occasion. The personal connection can be very strong.

Although almost any chain with large open style links can be used as a charm bracelet, the traditional, classic charm bracelet is made with a double curb link chain. These links are made so they nestle into each other, giving the chain a wide appearance while using fairly narrow gauge wire to form the links. The double link adds strength and style.

A charm is connected to the link with a jump ring. Many people leave the rings open; but a valuable charm can be lost this way. A good jeweler will solder the jump ring closed when a charm is added to a link for a customer.

Gold is expensive, and so sterling silver has become the traditional metal of choice for this type of jewelry. Of course price is the primary reason why silver is more popular, but there are other reasons to consider. There are many more available in sterling silver. Gold charms are made in popular styles, but unusual designs are very difficult if not impossible to find. And of course people do mix silver and gold, which can result in a very attractive, unusual and valuable piece of jewelry.

An alternative is to buy a ready made charm bracelet. The average bracelet comes with five to seven charms attached to it. As described above, they usually follow a theme or central idea. By starting with a small collection of five or so, it looks very attractive while providing room for more to be added as they are acquired.

The ultimate collector heads to auction sites, garage sales and flea markets to hunt for vintage and antique pieces. A small silver heart from the 1920's can cost $50.00 - or even more, depending on rarity. Once in a while an entire vintage bracelet will appear in an Ebay estate auction and cause an online frenzy. Vintage examples have gone for many hundreds of dollars to avid collectors.

Sterling silver jewelry doesn't just look great - it has value and can also have personal meaning. Find out why charm bracelets are an obsession for many collectors. Start building your charm bracelet today ... it's fun!

©Robert Edwards. All rights reserved. Permission is granted to use this article as content on websites and blogs provided all links and this author's statement remain intact. Robert Edwards is a jewelry designer and metalsmith in New York City with more than 30 years of experience in the jewelry trade. He is the webmaster of a very popular silver jewelry site that features many unique and handcrafted designs. Visit the Silver Charm Bracelet Gallery today!

1 comment:

Gia Victoria Cruz said...

I bought several custom pieces from Jewelry24seven.com and absolutely love every single one of them. I got compliments from everyone who has noticed. They are 1 of a kind, well made & beautiful. One is a charm bracelet and it is my personal favorite. From now on, I am sending them my business.

Every part of the transaction was smooth, Mr. Edwards' professionalism made me feel at ease sending him the little gemstones I had collected for theses pieces. He kept me up to date on the progress and shipped them a lot sooner than I expected.

They've earned my loyalty and I hope you try them out as well.
Thank you!