I've been working hard on a commission and haven't had time to do much else. The commission started out as being 2 bracelets each with a dog tag with an inscription and ended up being 7 bracelets, a lariat necklace and 4 key rings.
The dogs tags have a loved one's name on one side and then "live like there is no tomorrow" on the other side. It's a sad story, that I won't go into but it was an interesting experience making these.
It was very labour intensive for the finishing part to get a mirror finish on all of these. It took alot of hard polishing and my fingers were so sore. They literally did bleed as I was filing away so I was glad when they were finished. I am just waiting for the sterling silver key rings to arrive and then I can pass them on.
But what surprised me in doing this was that despite all this repetitive work, by knowing the story behind them, it didn't turn out to be a mindless task. All the time, my thoughts were with the lady who commissioned these - someone I had only met to design these, and her family......
And then it got me to thinking how we use items such as these dog tags to remember people by and feel close to people. It seems to be very much a tactile thing. Touching something that links us to a person seems to have a lot of power. I know I see it in my mum. A few years ago, before I was making jewelry, I bought her a globe necklace, as I live around the world from her, whenever she wears it, she holds onto the globe and thinks of me. That tactile connection is powerful and also comforting.
I hope these dog tags will offer the same comfort and strength to all the recipients. I was honored to make them.