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Take the Heirloom Update Challenge: Peek Inside Your Jewelry Box Today

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It’s hard to know what to feel or how to behave lately. We’re living in very uncertain times, navigating uncharted territory. It feels surreal, as if we just stepped into a new Netflix sci-fi or dystopian binge-worthy series. At times, it’s just plain scary. Maybe I’m exaggerating just a bit. But not by much.

For me, my “day-to-day” schedule is not vastly different. I’m still designing and making fabulous new pieces of jewelry, and still working with many of you on custom orders. For now, my Spring shows are cancelled or postponed, so I’m using technology to keep things afloat. How about you? What are you doing while social distancing and staying home? Are you teleworking?  Are you cooking up a storm in the kitchen? Checking out the latest online streaming yoga workout? Are you taking walks around your neighborhood? Chatting with your loved ones via Skype? I’m going to go out on a limb and say that even in the scariest of times (like right now), most of us are very fortunate to have what we have, and to be able to shelter in place. Truly, it could be worse.

I’m sure I’m not the only one who’s become very introspective, trying to make sense of things. There’s something about a world crisis that brings our communities closer, and makes the world a little smaller. A lot of people are wanting to give back in some way, to share their talents or resources to help someone in need. To find a silver lining when we struggle to see the way ahead.

Because I’m a jewelry designer, I love to give back in ways that are in line with my talents and core values. I often donate a piece of jewelry for a benefit or host a trunk show to raise funds for a good cause. So, this brings me to ask you something. If you could, right now, raise money for a good cause, while honoring a loved one AND do some Spring cleaning at the same time, would you?

If you answered “yes”, then I challenge you to take the next steps…

While you’re stuck at home, take a look inside your jewelry box. What do you have that you’re not wearing? Maybe it’s a piece you inherited from your mom or grandma. Maybe your great aunt left you a string of pearls. Imagine if you could update those pieces and reassemble them into a beautifully refreshed collection, in memory of a loved one. Would you? Or, maybe raise money for a charity near and dear to your heart? You CAN do this! We can do this together. Right now!

So, how does this work? Easy. Here’s an example of a recent heirloom redesign...

Gay Leffel had a love of travel, collecting art and jewelry from all over the world.  When she passed, her dear friend Abby inherited some of the jewelry that Gay collected on her travels. But Abby’s style was different than Gay’s. Sadly, she knew she’d probably never wear her dear friend’s jewelry. But she didn’t want to just give the pieces away. Instead, Abby chose to honor her friend’s memory while also benefitting a charity that Gay supported. The result is a collection of beautifully redesigned pieces, called the Gay Leffel Lincoln Park Zoo Collection. 25% of the proceeds from each piece, go to benefit the Lincoln Park Zoo.

"Prayerful Peace" from the Gay Leffel Lincoln Park Zoo Collection


Here’s another example…

On my workbench, right now I’m designing and making pieces for the Diane Kessler American Cancer Society Collection. Diane was a lifelong volunteer and activist for those causes that enriched the lives of women, families and children. She died in 2019 from Cancer. I’m working with Diane’s daughter on an heirloom update that Diane would be proud of. A portion of the proceeds from sales from this collection will be donated to the American Cancer Society in her memory.

Ok. Now that I’ve planted the seed, go take a peek inside your jewelry box. What do you see that you’re not wearing and probably will never wear? I thought so. Take some time and sit with these pieces. Deciding to part with them might feel a little difficult at first. But then, try to imagine a whole new life for them, while also doing something good for your community. How does that feel? When you’re ready, give me a buzz HERE. Together we’ll design an heirloom update, and give those pieces new meaning and purpose.

buffalo horn polymer clay heirloom update

"Wonderful, Whimsical Polymer Clay" from the Diane Kessler American Cancer Society Collection