Category Archives: Jewellery

Heidi's Beads and Buns

It Blew My Head Off

This week we ventured out to the perplexedly named Heidi’s Beads and Buns. As it happens, she sells beads and buns, thereby making a mockery of my attempts to discover some sort of hidden meaning in the interplay between the two words. Beads and buns and smoothies now, too, Heidi tells me.

So many rings, so little time
So many rings, so little time

It took a little cajoling to have accompaniment this week, but I did eventually convince Clara and Solomon that there might be something in it for them. They were both disappointed that the “something” did not involve one of Heidi’s fanciful creations. However, they were both delighted that they not only got to have a cinnamon bun, but they were also allowed to choose which one they wanted. Solomon had an “it’s too good to be true” look of suspicion as he selected an inner-row bun, but Heidi cheerfully pried it out for him. That bit of cinnamon bun iconoclasm was enough to make him delight in his prize, regardless of flavour. Happily, they were delicious as well as risqué.

Oooh la la
Oooh la la

I asked Heidi about the odd seeming combination and she shrugged, as though she had never considering the combination odd. She said “well, I’ve just always made cinnamon buns.” Here’s hoping she continues to always keep on making them.

On to the beads. Heidi has an eye-catching collection of rings, bracelets, earrings, and necklaces that have prompted no end of begging and agony in poor Clara over numerous visits to the Wolfville Farmers’ Market. Please don’t think I’m a terribly mean mother, but I did not buy anything for Clara. I did, however, let her and her brother try on and model several different rings, all of which were “the most beautiful ever”.

Clara's adorable chubby hand with ring
Clara’s adorable chubby hand with ring


Solomon's adorable chubby hand, with ring
Solomon’s adorable chubby hand, with ring

Although, as I’ve mentioned before, I’m not much of a jewellery wearer, I decided to go out on a limb (or digit, as it were) and acquire a fun and funky ring for myself. I was torn between a red bead with red wire creation and a silver ring with a flower. Clara made the decision for me by choosing the flower one.

“Why that one?” I asked.
“Because,” she said, “it blew my head off.”
I can’t argue with that.

I’ve been wearing the ring off and on for a couple of weeks now and I feel very ostentatious when wearing it. I was certain that everyone would notice my foray into the jewellery wild side. However, aside from the “oh, that’s so cute” comments, only my father expressed an opinion. He asked “does it squirt water?” Thanks Dad!

Computering and modeling.  Multi-tasking at its finest
Computering and modeling. Multi-tasking at its finest

I love it and it makes me feel a little dangerous to wear because it’s so out of character for me. It also feels a little dangerous to wear because I need it to be sized ever-so-slightly but Hurricane Arthur prevented me (thus far) from revisiting Heidi and her glorious goodies. Fortunately, Arthur did not whip it off my pinkie, but it’s really only a matter of time. I will return, Heidi, I promise.

The real highlight of the visit was allowing Clara and Solomon to choose a necklace and earrings set to give to Grandma for her birthday (which is the day before the Grapevine is published, so it’s safe to tell you). They were thrilled to be able to carefully examine each set and finally agreed to one that I hope my mother will love because it is unique, lovely, and beautifully made, but also because it was chosen with love.

I won special bonus points from Heidi for pronouncing her last name correctly on the first try. You’ll have to stop by her booth at the Wolfville Farmer’s Market to find out what it is and see if you can get bonus points, too. Actually, I made up the bonus points part, but you should go anyway, because Heidi’s creations are strictly offline.

Carla Dunham Jewellery Design

Who Are You Wearing?

Now that I am a hardworking and intrepid journalist with looming deadlines and tough-nosed (but fair) editors, I have decided to take my duties more seriously and stop visiting the booth I’m planning to profile mere hours before writing my latest missive. Not that I still don’t write the missive at the last minute, but I digress.

From almost the moment she was born, Clara has looked askance at my general lack of decoration. No holiday passes without her offering me some type of “jewellery” to wear. Alas, I’m not much for shiny things. This week, Clara was overjoyed to learn we were visiting the booth of Carla Dunham (also of interest – those two have all the same letters in their first names. Obsessed with jewellery…same letters in names. There is obviously a connection to be made).

I will confess I was a little nervous because I don’t wear earrings, bracelets make me twitchy, and rings are okay if they are my totally plain wedding band. “Clearly,” thought I, “I am NOT Carla’s target market.” “Clearly,” thought Clara, “Mommy is nuts.”

As often happens, the first thing in Carla’s display that caught my eye was the item I ended up circling back to after agonizing about all my other possible choices.  I could not resist a gorgeous charm necklace with a tiny acorn, a wee jewel coiled up in copper wire, and a tiny circle with tiny letters spelling out “Strong.” “This,” I stated, “is running the Bluenose 10k with me.”

Also defies gravity
Also defies gravity

Carla is a wire-style jewellery maker (jewellist? Jewel-monger?) who makes a wide variety of items to suit every taste (even jewelphobes like moi). If she doesn’t have something to suit your fancy…she will MAKE IT. My friend Laura (of fame) and her siblings special-ordered a gorgeous piece for their mother for mother’s day. Carla, basically, can make your wildest jewellery dreams come true.

Custom Family Tree.  Shazam!
Custom Family Tree. Shazam!

And here’s the cool thing: if you are a weird werido like me who is very particular about such things as how long a necklace must be to avoid the “this feels like a leash!” category on the one hand and the “send help, I’m losing oxygen from this winch around my neck” variety…Carla will alter it for you. Not a word of a lie, Carla shortened my necklace for me in front of my very eyes in less than 1 minute. It’s pretty much a super power.

What's she building down there?!?
What’s she building down there?!?
The hand is much quicker than the eye.
The hand is much quicker than the eye.

But again I digress. I meant to tell you about all the advantages of taking my time to allow the experience of something like a lovely new piece of jewellery to fully develop. I DID wear my necklace on the Bluenose, and I think it may have had some sort of cosmic influence, because those hills did not make me feel like I was dying. Runs since then…not so much.

The other great thing about wearing this necklace is that at last count FOUR different women exclaimed “OH! It’s a Carla Dunham!” when they noticed it. This is good news for Ms. Dunham. As for me, I felt like I was on the red carpet at the Oscars. “Ms. Killam, who are you wearing?” Nothing like a little glamour and name-dropping tossed into one’s day.

In all seriousness, though, Carla’s work is absolutely lovely. Why buy something that a zillion other people have when you can get a one-of-a-kind piece from Carla? I have quite a number of glamourous friends in my life (you know who you are, and don’t you deny it!) and I know they all have birthdays…

As for dear Clara. She would have liked one of everything, but I gently guided her to something she probably wouldn’t lose. Alas, my glittering princess is also an incorrigible slob (sorry, Mom, she might be your only granddaughter, but you know it’s true). We settled on a hair jewel. Clara wore it proudly for a daily, and then Victoria the Mermaid has worn it ever since. I did persuade her to lend it to Clara for her dance recital, but it really does look amazing in mermaid hair.

A little post-recital Grandpa love.
A little post-recital Grandpa love.


Carla Dunham Jewellery Design can be found on Pinterest, Instagram, Facebook, and of course at the Farmer’s Market in Wolfville.