Thursday, 3 May 2018

Where's the Catch?


Last week was Sustainability Week in St Albans. 
Our church ran an Upcycling and Repair Fair. 
I wanted to contribute, but what should I do?

I’ve spent a lifetime putting together charity shop outfits, but Jo was running a stall doing that.

I’ve always altered and mended clothes, but Geraldine was doing that.

In the end, I offered to repair broken junk jewellery.  “Costume jewellery,” corrected Jo.

I packed my pliers, my findings and my reels of cord and wire.
I thought I’d have time to kill, so I brought along my own project.
I needn’t have bothered.  A steady stream of women appeared clutching tiny boxes and plastic bags.
They contained chains whose catches had broken, necklaces which had snapped, spilling beads, earrings which had lost their wires.
I had stipulated “No gold or silver”, so none of these items was worth much in money terms.  Instead, people had kept them for sentimental reasons:
“This was my mother’s.”
“My grandmother gave this to me.”
“I always thought this made me look pretty.”
So repairing them was unexpectedly rewarding. 
Most women could not wait, but put on their mended jewellery straight away with a smile.

And the best was one lady whom I helped to re-string her grandmother’s green and yellow beads.  When they were complete, she put them on, and stood up.  Everything she was wearing was green and yellow to match. 
Before she had even set out that morning, she had anticipated the moment she would get her beloved necklace back and had dressed accordingly.

Now if that wasn't worthwhile, what is?