I remember the first time I saw a picture of a woman wearing an arm full of bracelets. I was at the library with my grandmother, flipping through photography books, when I came across Man Ray’s photographs of Nancy Cunard. I showed the photos to my grandma and she said, “Honey, those are bakelite bracelets, I have some at home if you want to look at them.” One of my favorite pastimes when I was a child, was to look through my grandmother’s wooden drawers full of treasures from the past. I remember these times so well: Flipping through her old photographs, peering through her mother’s antique, mother of pearl opera glasses, and letting strands of beads and bracelets cover every inch of my tiny hands. She invited me into her private world and told me stories of her past, while shaping my sense of aesthetics for the future. My grandmother never made me feel like a little kid, never made me feel bad for asking any question, and always had time to show me something new.
When I moved to New York from San Diego in 2008, I took everything I had learned from my grandma with me. This is probably the reason I started to approach older women on the street(my grandmother had recently passed) asking them questions about their personal style, and wanting to share their stories with others. One of the things I noticed was that many of them were wearing armloads of bracelets– Or was it me who was drawn to something I had seen in my past, a moment once shared with my beloved Grandma Bluma?