Pandora bracelet - pink Caring, silver Dedication and Belief created from snowflake obsidian.

Our stories and values can be beautifully captured through charm bracelets, writes Aznim Ruhana Md Yusup

THE history of charms and charm bracelets goes back to ancient times, where they were likely used to ward off evil spirits or bad luck. But perhaps our ancestors also kept charms as a token of remembrance, or because they were unique and meaningful.

This is not too far off from why we wear charms today. In addition to being decorative in a bracelet, they encapsulate our story.

A lot of charms are miniatures of real objects, associated with the wearer’s experience while others have a less obvious connection.

The result is a charm bracelet that is as unique as the individual. Modern charm bracelets come in two forms — a chain-like bracelet where the charms are hooked on or cord-like so that the charms (in the form of beads) can be inserted.

While the beads and bracelets may be made by different companies, they come in the same diameter to make them easy to attach to bracelets.

MIX AND MATCH

Danish jewellery company Pandora started making beaded charms in 2000. The first Pandora store in Malaysia opened in 2010, and there are 24 outlets currently in operation including the latest in Komtar JBCC Mall in Johor Baru.

Well-known for quality and hand-finished jewellery at affordable prices, its range of charms, pendants, clips and rings are created to be mixed and matched.

Its Essence collection for Autumn/Winter 2014 consists of 12 charms handcrafted from gold, sterling silver and gemstones, representing a significant life value. The beads are designed with a flexible silicone grip inside the core, so they can be positioned firmly on the new Essence bracelet.

It is also the first time that gold is introduced to the Essence collection. The four charms made of 14k gold represent intuition, creativity, sensitivity and dignity. Intuition has an intricate gold pattern that expresses the importance of following one’s instinct. A free-flowing lace pattern adorns the Creativity charm.

A delicate diamond-pointed 14k gold surface brings across the tactile Sensitivity, while Dignity is dotted with sparkling cubic zirconia stones.

BEADED CRAFTSMANSHIP

Other beads in the collection make use of subtle pastel coloured quartz and agate. Patience is represented by a blue lace agate charm, given that the gemstone is typically regarded as tranquil and serene.

The Caring charm from rose quartz in a soft shade of pink inspires gentleness and affection. A charm made of lemon quartz represents optimism, as the sunny yellow shade embodies positive thinking and confidence about the future. The Belief charm is created from snowflake obsidian. The gemstone is said to absorb fear and act as a shield from negativity. Its delicate snowflake pattern inspires serenity and a strong belief in self.

The Essence collection includes four charms in sterling silver, representing curiosity, spirituality, dedication and generosity. Prices range RM169 to RM295, while charms start from RM633.