Memories Out of Memory Wire

Design Idea C404 Bracelet Sop Memory Wire
by Kristal Wick, Author, Designer, Instructor and Swarovski crystal Ambassador,
Exclusively for Fire Mountain Gems and Beads®

My dear dad died of colon cancer a few years back. I adored him and still miss him every day. It was a slow painful battle and he charged into the next realm on that white horse quite bravely, with loved ones at his side to say good-bye. He had many friends and will be forever remembered for his sense of humor, never-give-up attitude and his nickname "The Whistler." No, he didn't whistle birdcalls but happy songs and little ditties. He whistled his whole life and you could hear his whistling coming before he turned the corner. When my dad entered a room, it quickly turned into a party and he sure knew how to enjoy life!

His passion, enthusiasm, perseverance and strength certainly shaped my character and the way I live my life. To pay tribute to him on Father's Day, I wanted to design a piece that commemorates the love and admiration we all feel toward him. And since my favorite expression is through creativity (can you all relate?), I decided to design a token to wear and share with each of his loved ones. As I was rifling through my studio for that perfect starting point, I ran across some memory wire. Hmmmmmmmm, how appropriate--using memory wire to make a memorial piece of jewelry? Ahhhh, yes, how perfect! I wanted to create a piece filled with meaning, yet not so over the top that it couldn't be worn frequently. I HAD to incorporate Swarovski crystals as they're my fave and I wanted this piece to bring some light to the topic, so what better for that than a splash of bling? I love using the "awareness" colors in my jewelry designs supporting a cause. In this case, the color is blue to show support for colon cancer. The end result was a blue memory wire bracelet I was able to gift to each of his siblings and loved ones.

In addition to honoring him and his extraordinary life, the process of making these bracelets also turned out to be quite healing for me. You know we all have our personal paths to follow during our lifetimes and although we gratefully cross others' paths for a while, we're committed to our own path. And if you've ever watched a loved one go through a painful experience, you know the feeling of helplessness that just doesn't seem to go away. In channeling that feeling through my jewelry creations and fondly remembering my dad, those bracelets hugged my heart and I was able to release that helpless feeling. I had actually "done" something meaningful and tangible to remember a beloved's life, his impact on me, and more importantly was then able to share with others.

There were tears and laughter as I gifted my "Tom Wick" bracelets, and we are all filled with bittersweet memories every time we wrap that bracelet around our wrist; like a warm hug! So I'd like to share with all my beady peeps my simple recipe for a warm hug, around the wrist. Create these sweet bracelets to honor a loved one going through a tough battle at this time, or a beloved who has passed. Make them together as a group experience or for your own healing. Either way, your heart will feel that hug!

Tom Wick Memory Wire Bracelet

Design Idea C404, Design Idea C405 and Design Idea C406
  1. Select the awareness color from the ''Awareness Ribbon Color and Cause Guide'' you will be working with.
  2. Use memory wire cutters to cut the memory wire to fit your wrist. I like a wrap and a half for my bracelets.
  3. Use round-nose pliers to form a small loop on the end of the memory wire.
  4. Lay out your design.
  5. String all the beads onto your memory wire then form a simple loop on the 2nd end to finish.
Tip: You can use the smaller memory wire to make key chains or wine glass charms.

Design with ... Additional Resources ...

Customer Comments

We would like to share some of the customer comments we received in response to the article "Memories Out of Memory Wire," as featured in an email newsletter. Please keep in mind that the comments expressed below are those of our customers and do not reflect the views of Fire Mountain Gems and Beads.

"I only wish there was a color for thanking someone for knowing just the right thing to do. My brother passed away 3 years ago and now I can make memory bracelets for all of my family in memory of him. Tim suffered quite a bit and it took a toll on all of us, young and old. He is deeply missed.

If there were colors that referred to someone with the caring and thoughtfulness of Kristal Wick, rest assured I would be the first to make bracelets to honor her.

Please pass this message along to her that Her Dad along with her Mother, I assume, have raised one beautiful human being. Sincerely,"
- Susie

"What a wonderful story and creative idea to remember a loved one by. I also have recently lost a loved one, my son. He struggled through life with a disability, his journey wasn't at all easy for him and all those around him, supporting him through his struggles. The idea of creating some jewellery from memory wire, a medium I haven't worked with yet, is one I will follow up on. Thanks for the ideas. Keep them coming. Regards"
- Anne

"Thank you for the wonderful idea, of the memory bracelet, my father passed away a year ago very suddenly. I had been looking for something to make to remind me of dad. This is perfect. I plan to make one for each of my close relatives that have passed away in honor of them."
- Barbara

"Wonderful information and ideas."
- Anni

"What a wonderful article. You've given me food for thought. Love the design--and the way you honor your father in your work.

I lost a dear friend many years ago to colon cancer, and on my birthday, no less. I think I might make a bracelet for her and also for my friend Filomena who left half as long ago, succumbing to breast cancer. What a wonderful memorial! You rock!"
- Charlene

"K Wick's story and idea touched my heart--the hug to wear around your wrist will accompany any such bracelet I may gift to my loved ones! Thank you!"
- Sheila

"Kristal Wick writes beautifully. She always speaks truth to which everyone can relate. I look forward to reading her articles, and seeing her beautiful beadwork."
- Julie

I loved this! Not only was it nice to read about how Kristal shared her memories of her dad, but it showed me that I can make memory "treasures" for relatives and friends at certain times of their lives. What a nice way to remember someone.

Thank you very much for this and for the link to the list of Ribbon Colors along with their meanings. Just yesterday my husband was asking me what other colors there were besides pink and yellow. This will give him a much better explanation than mine. Thank you!"
- Ann

"I love this article, it brings back Memories of my Mother who has been gone 26yrs this month (seems like yesterday). I now have a way to take that sorrow and turn it in to joy. I will make for my Brother, my Cousins and myself something with Memory Wire/Beads to Rejoice in her Memory. Thank You so much for sharing your Memories and Ideas. In going through my treasures, I find I have almost everything I need. It gives me a reason to go Bead shopping ... :-D I get a lot of my Beads/Supplies from Fire Mountain Gems ... Your Friend"
- Glenda


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