I've been thinking about this a lot recently, because I'm trying to understand why I have such a passion for designing jewellery. It goes beyond fashion and commerce.
In a different life, perhaps I would design software, furniture, flower arrangements. I could be a graphic artist, a painter (though colour baffles me sometimes), or an architect. Why jewellery?
On the surface, jewellery seems superfluous. No-one NEEDS jewellery.
Or do we?
Recently I lost a friend, who was an architect. He was a fantastic architect with not only design skills, but people skills and a clear picture of the people and places he was designing for. He changed the community of Penticton, British Columbia by building beautiful and relevant structures that raised the perception of the small tourist town, all while being a devoted husband, father, business partner and friend. His memorial service was standing room only, filled with people from all walks of life who knew and loved him. His family spoke of his humour, his talent and his dedication to his profession.
His friends spoke of how he was the glue that held them all together from high-school to the end of his life. There were many tears; he was gone too soon.
So what has this to do with jewellery?
I finally realized, as I drove home alone through Penticton past the many projects that were "Bevanda" designs, that what Nick Bevanda created would stand as a tribute to his life's work. His 4 children, and devoted wife would be able to see him every day, as they tried to adjust to living without him present.
The work I create for my clients, if I design correctly, is a personal legacy of the person who wears it. A signature piece of jewellery is intimate, and tangible, and passes through time from generation to generation, carrying the story of its provenance with it.
I remembered, as I drove through Penticton that I had the privilege to guide Nick when he purchased the engagement ring that his wife is still wearing today. She will remember the day he gave it to her, and chances are, she will keep it forever.
Jewellery is not just an adornment. When created with love and purpose, its a love story that continues long after we're gone.