In our house, after the kids are in bed, Layla has gotten her evening walk, and the usual daily chores are complete, we retreat to our office.  We spend quality time together with our backs to each other at our desks, mumbling under our breaths as Greg tackles his CFO duties and I blog and bead or do other Mom electronic chores.  Poor Greg is interrupted often by my demanding his opinion on whatever piece of jewelry I might be working on.  On one recent occasion he (to my delight) said "Wow!" and then "Where is all this creativeness coming from?"

I had already been thinking about my Dad as a subject for my Art Bead Scene carnival blog post on the theme REMEMBRANCE, but I have realized that my current work/craft situation is so much like my Dad, Ted.  He was in the Navy, drove ships, then retired and worked with radars and traffic signal equipment.  But he was also a life long model railroader.  And a genius designer/problem solver.  When my brother and I were young and struggled with the camp chore of refilling the water jugs, he designed one on wheels.  At our church he figured out how to design wooden candelabras that fit securely onto the railings to make for a beautiful Christmas Eve service. 

One of Greg's favorite memories of my Dad is from the first time I took Greg on a visit home.  It was Thanksgiving and we had gone out to cut down a live Christmas tree, which ended up being so heavy it collapsed the tree stand.  Greg and my Dad went off to the hardware store, Greg assuming that they were just going to buy a new tree stand.  Instead, my Dad bought supplies and came home to completely rebuild the old tree stand to make it work.  Notice the sand castle in this picture of my Dad and brother, Andrew?

In remembrance of my Dad, I thought it would be cool to find a Navy uniform item and work it into a piece of jewelry.  I found a hat insignia that had the most potential, and pulled the pins off the back and filed it smooth. 

The insignia is kind of bright, and I haven't graduated to liver of sulfur oxidizing (yet), so I decided to highlight the silver a little with bright silver seed beds and then use blue glass and gray-blue shell beads for the rest of the necklace.  Despite the fact that my brother is the third generation in my family to serve in the Navy, I ended up in the Air Force (totally with my Dad's blessing) so I used an Air Force uniform button as part of the clasp. 

Thanks for sharing in my memories!


  1. Your Dad would love what you have created in his honor. It reminds me of the naval dress uniform with all its medal and ribbons. Beautiful way to remember!

  2. Lovely blog... since that hat insignia is still shinny it's probably coated with something! But you will always remember your father when you wear the necklace!

  3. This is my favorite blog post of the morning~ what a beautifully written tribute and I adore the necklace. Thanks so much for sharing.


  4. Very sweet tribute to your dad. My dad is gone and I sometimes wonder what he would think of some of my designs and wish I could ask him.

    The navy button is so cool

  5. What a sweet remembrance of your dad! Your necklace is beautiful! I've recently started wearing my dad's paratroopers wings along with my "baby" paratroopers wings on my jean jacket! I have really been missing him, especially on my 60th birthday, so that's when I put them on my jacket! Now, if only I could talk mom out of the silk portrait (from Japan) of dad & me. It shows both of us with our wings! I guess we're always "daddy's little girls"! Marilynn

  6. Such a moving tribute. I love that you incorporated those pieces of your service as well as your dad's. In fact, I love that button.
    Thanks for sharing your remembrance with us!
    Enjoy the day!

  7. Elisabeth--I love it and your post--you are very talented! Hopefully we'll get to do lunch soon!
    Julie Boit

  8. What a great post. The piece is absolutely wonderful and that it has history, even better.

  9. This is amazing! How am I just now seeing it? I love the necklace!

  10. Beautiful post, Elisabeth. Your special necklace is stunning.


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