The story behind Cherche'

I don't think I've ever shared the entire story about my journey of Cherche' from the very start. So here goes.

It was May 2009; mere days before my wedding. I was at the bead shop in Baton Rouge getting some things made for the French girls who were coming to my wedding. I wanted to get them something similar to the bridesmaids gifts, but more-age appropriate. After that was decided upon, I saw a sign up sheet for a jewelry making class, inquired about it, then had the audacity to sign my little self up for that class....mere days before my wedding! It was a pretty bold move thinking that I had the time or money to do so, but I did it.

So mere days before that May 23 wedding, I went back to the bead shop for the class. I realized that the nice lady who had talked me into signing up wasn't there, but another lady was there to teach. She proceeded to tell me all the things I needed to purchase: the tray, "findings", more wires, clamps for the wires, more this and more that. Granted, I had already bought the jewelry tools, the beads for which I was to make into some fabulous piece of jewelry, and the cost of the class itself. I wasn't looking to spending any more money. I just wanted to make a little something for my beach honeymoon, and of course chunky turquoise beads aren't on the low end of the spectrum. Great.

So I said, "Listen, lady. Knowing me, I'll never pick this up again, so I really don't want to go spending any more money than I already have. I'm getting married in about a week and a half, and I really don't know why I'm here. I shouldn't have come."

Well anyway, I stayed and made my fabulous turquoise set, and I did a pretty good job. Since I chose such big stones to work with, I was finished in record time. All the others had small beads to string on to their wires. So the lady mentions that maybe I should make more pieces since I paid for an hour and a half's worth of teaching. I thought that sounded like a good idea, so I found some small coral beads to go with the turquoise set. She said those weren't too expensive, so I went to the register and she rang me up. The price ends up being astronomical. I told her that I might need to go look for something else then. But whoops, she had already run it through the computer, and she couldn't return. Oh I was not happy. I was so upset; not angry like I was before; upset.

So with my new jewelry tools and beads, turquoise and coral, I just left. I thought that I would figure this jewelry making thing on my own, if I could only remember what they taught me in those 5 minutes I was there. So I cried all the way to the Mexican restaurant where my family was eating. (I know this seems a bit dramatic, but I was probably under lots of stress because of the upcoming wedding...mere days away).

My mom probably laughed and said I was being ridiculous, which I was. And my dad probably said, "You need some money? Don't worry. How much do you need. Here-here's a $100." That's Dad's solution to everything. He's very generous; I'm not complaining. But I said, "No. I'm just upset because I was trying so hard to manage my money, and I blew it on jewelry tools, jewelry beads, and a jewelry class, and knowing me, I will never use any of this again." I tend to take up projects and put them away and never pick them back up (ie. the bag of yarn sitting in the corner from when I took up knitting).

After all that drama, I went home my empty apartment, as I was fixing to move to South Carolina, and I laid out those coral beads on the hard wood floor, and attempted to make a bracelet by examining how I had made the turquoise one. And I did it! I couldn't believe it! I'm not a quick learner when it comes to stuff like this, and I fully expected the project to be an utter failure, but I did it! A small, very small victory! I must add that I still wear those pieces today; they did not break; I must have done a pretty decent job.

Why do I tell you this?

Because the story really does come full circle.

After moving to South Carolina the day after I got married (that's right, the very next day), I looked for a job. For months, I looked and looked on the internet, which has and always will be a huge waste of time. It's all about  connections. Since I had no connections here, I was so very close to going to Cracker Barrel and apply for the hosting job that I found on the {unhelpful}internet. I'm not kidding.

Few times in life, or few times in my life, do things just "click." But maybe desperate times call for desperate measures, and my prayers were finally answered in August of last year. After countless nights talking it out with my husband, he enlightened me on what I am capable of doing and doing well. And after spending some more time "searching" for specifics in the mountains of North Carolina, I came home and I knew what I needed to do: search for jewelry. Antique jewelry. I had an interest, some prior knowledge, and most importantly, the desire to learn.

As things were rolling along, I started to find some jewelry that was broken and tried fix it. I had surprising success. Then it occurred to me: I didn't waste my time or money buying those jewelry tools. I actually use them everyday! I got so, so upset about the jewelry class, the jewelry tools, the "findings", the books etc. that I felt like I was forced to buy, but God was leading me the whole time! Even if I was pushed, God used it for good.

Then this occurred to me:



Turned into this:

And I don't think it's any coincidence that I worked at a jewelry store either. I was just minding my business when I needed a "real" repair done, and I brought my ring to a local jeweler when we were living in SC. The jeweler called to let me know that my ring was ready, and also said that he noticed a real interest I had in jewelry. He said that they had been casually looking for someone to help with repairs and with the in's and out's of the store. He asked if I would be their new apprentice. Maybe I was at the right place at the right time, or maybe I'm being lead by the Spirit. The second is what I prayed for. I think the second is what I got.