September 2014 marked ten years since Vintage Bling took it's first breath and I think we need to CELEBRATE!! I thought you might enjoy hearing how it all began:
The very first piece of jewelry that I made was a stretchy beaded bracelet. However, not just any beads would do for me. This girl started collecting vintage jewelry as a teenager. I always loved the look of these old treasures, even in my youth, and would never shy away from wearing a brooch or necklace no matter if it had imperfections due to age. Back in the 70's and 80's, vintage jewelry was tossed into yard sales by the baggie full. I could never leave it behind, even though I didn't know what I would do with it all. I was way ahead of my time, embracing the nostalgia of bygone eras long before it became so popular. As a result, by the time I decided to make my bracelet, I had amassed quite a collection of vintage beaded necklaces and rhinestone studded bling. There was no running to the bead store for me. I was immediately drawn to the glorious vintage beads adorning the multi-strand necklaces in my collection. These are not beads you can buy in a craft store.
My friend Jane had started making stretchy bracelets and that is what inspired me to try making my own. My vintage beads and I went to her house so she could teach me how to make them and I was pleased as punch with my creations! As you can imagine, when I wore my bracelets to work they drew a great reaction from my co-workers. Everyone commented and wanted to know where I got them. Immediately I was hooked on creating these bracelets and set to work making myself an extensive array of colors with a variety of beads. I loved stacking them and wore multiple combinations every day. It wasn't long before the girls at work were asking to buy them. Some days I sold them right off my wrist and came home after work with none left. Oh well, that just meant I got to make more. It was these girls from work who encouraged me to find a way to market my wares.
Here are some of my earliest stretchy bracelets.
This is my first work studio. A tiny little corner in a tiny little bedroom. I have seriously outgrown that space. VB now occupies two rooms in the next house we moved into.
So much pretty bling to play with. This is some of my current stash.
Around this time the term "bling" was becoming popular in our culture. Myself and 2 girlfriends started calling all my vintage jewelry "vintage bling" and it became our catch phrase. Ironically, when I decided to try my hand at selling jewelry, I asked Laurie and Denise for suggestions of what to call my line. They just looked at me as if it was the most obvious thing in the world and both blurted out "Vintage Bling"!
And that, my friends, was the inception of Vintage Bling. The first bracelet I made was 10 years ago. I'm excited to have reached this milestone! In the past decade, Vintage Bling has certainly evolved and come a long way from the original stretchy bracelets. I still run into the girls I worked with back then and they are still wearing their bracelets. Those beautiful vintage beads are so timeless.
Vintage Bling would not be where it is today without you, my peeps. Thank you so much for being loyal followers and customers, as well as my encouragers. I do it all for you! ... well, maybe for me too. After all, it is my happy place. ...but mostly for you.
My way of saying THANK YOU is to offer you a 30% discount on any purchase of Vintage Bling jewelry from the website, Exchange Uporium or in Studio. So shop on line and enter 10YEARS into the coupon code spot at check out, or hop on down to the Exchange Uporium where the discount will be applied at check out, or book your personal shopping appointment with me in the Studio, OR do all of the above. The Anniversary sale is a limited time offer, running from Oct 20 - Nov 3, 2014.
My thanks to YOU! HAPPY SHOPPING!!
Jewelry images by Vintage Bling. Model images by Sabrina Naayen Photography . Graphics by Ayoko Design Inc