While I was in Canberra, stuck for two weeks with only a weekends worth of clothes to work with, I went out to a friends for breakfast and decided to make myself a necklace.
The previous day, when strolling around the idyllic Canberran suburb of Curtin, I spotted these gloriously rubied leaves and picked them thinking to whip them into some kind of necklace. I thought they would in fact probably turn out to be picked and left with all good intentions not realised. But, no. The morning of said breakfast date I whipped a long thread through the tip of each leaf, strung them all together and tied them around my neck. I was that slap-stick. And you can probably tell!
The intention here is not to show you how clever I am. Because, really, anyone could make something far superior to this. The idea is to show, almost in protest, that a decorative object does not have to be made somewhere overseas, bought in a shop, worn as a trend and then only to be discarded when the trend or the mood passes. When I picked these leaves I was celebrating Autumn, when I wore them I wore them as a celebration of Autumn. The leaves were put back onto the earth where they decayed and formed part of the soil to go back into the cycle of life.
When things are bought from a shop they usually follow a linear pattern along the lines of: mined, made, shipped, purchased, used, discarded. If things are to follow a cyclical route, which is the route which has allowed our earth to survive as long as it has, things must return from where they came, or for these various metals which we value so much must return into circulation rather than into a dump.
These circular patterns, though, are so large that no one can see the whole picture and so, in my mind, it is better to involve oneself in the lifecycles closer to home. Shop locally, work locally, play locally, grow your own food, put your food scraps into the compost heap to degrade back into soil to grow more food (and so they don’t turn into methane in the anaerobic conditions of the rubbish tip), and even…make your own jewellery!
And make things out of things that will not just end up as yet another piece of junk.
Organic jewellery. Next up: edible jewellery!