Tuesday, October 15, 2013

Accessorizing for Eid, the eco-friendly way!

Welcome to part 2 (of two) of my Eid/Thanksgiving post! (Click here for Part 1).

This is a quick (and image heavy) post on how I accessorized my Eid oufit the eco-friendly way.

My love affair with beads goes all the way back to my childhood; the earliest piece beaded jewelry I have is a knitted seed bead necklace my mom made at one of her crafting classes when I was five or six years old. It was only last summer that it occured to me to try my hand at beading. Needless to say, my relationship with beads took a different turn from then on.

I call this necklace the Blue Lantern and it's one of the first necklaces I made for myself. This would have cost more than what I'm willing to pay at a retail store so being able to make simple things like this can be really good for your wallet. There are no intricate maneuvers involved, just stringing one bead after another and putting together colours that complement each other. Simple, right?

Oh, and here's my favourite part: memory wire bracelet from repurposed clay beads!

This summer, my beading career made a right turn down Eco-friendly Boulevard. I started "harvesting" beads from accessories I find in thrift stores and second-hand shops. The beads I used for this bracelett came from a necklace I found at Value Village for $1.99.

There are huge benefits from repurposing beads from old accessories. First, I'm salvaging things rather than adding to the global garbage heap. Second, I know I'm not adding to the pollution that result from the production of brand new beads. Third, profits from thrift stores like Value Village, St. Vincent's and the Salvation Army usually go towards helping the needy or funding research on cancer or diabetes*. Fourth, used beads have the antiqued, worn-out quality which I like in my accessories. Plus, knowing that each string of bead has its own history prior to my finding it gives that much more meaning to the pieces I make. It's a perfect arrangement, isn't it?

I still need to purchase new materials, such as wires and crimps. Nevertheless, I'd like to believe that every little thing we do makes an impact, no matter how small.

*Not all charities contribute 100% of their profits to their stated goals, so do your research and find out where your money's going.

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