When we were young, friendship bracelets were a colorful marker that we were loved by our peers. They might have been lumpy, imperfectly patterned or weirdly colored, but they were ours. Now we’re older and the bracelets are back in style.
I’ve always been a perfectionist when it comes to gifts. If I’m making my presents, the pattern will be perfectly executed or tweaked until it is. A couple years ago, I started making friendship bracelets again. Some of the harder patterns didn’t come out perfectly on the first try, so I would go back and correct the patterns.
What was interesting, though, was that most patterns were made by knotting string. Physically, knots are tied to combine or hold things. Symbolically, they represent endurance and lasting unions. Therefore, each bracelet is an independent representation of the depth and length of the friendship by its very nature.
It’s interesting to me that they would become fashionable and available for purchase. Those seem less symbolic of the bonds of friendship and more of a statement piece. That is not to say that store bought pieces of jewelry cannot be important or treasured, but friendship bracelets are about very personal bonds that are strengthened by circumstances that might break other relationships.
Save one, I have kept every bracelet I’ve been given in my adulthood. It seems that the bracelets are more meaningful when they’re for/from people you choose to be around. They are absolutely unique, just like my friends, and I treasure them accordingly.
Post inspired by an old friend giving me a bracelet she’d made when I saw her for the first time in a coffee shop today.