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  • Writer's pictureRebekah Ann

The joy in recycling & reducing

There's a joy an even a beauty in recycling, reusing, remodelling & reducing which I've come to discover. Using recycled materials isn't limited to my work. It extends to my workshop (the jewellers hub) my home and even my wardrobe!

Lots of people feel and have felt sorry for me because my home is full of second hand items, hand me downs, recycled bits and bin finds (Brighton bin finds are incredible!) and it's the same for my clothes (except no bin finds there!) First it may have been from the lack of funds, but now it's a choice. Everything feels like it has its own story.

It's funny, People are obsessed with getting me a bigger and newer TV... this one makes me laugh. I would remove it choosing instead to use the laptop to watch a film or something once in a while if Chris would be up for that.

"Let me get you a TV for your bedroom" is another one we hear a lot. Thank you but we both don't like TV's in the bedroom. I haven't had one in my bedroom since I was 26. Don't get me wrong, we do get excited to watch a film in bed in a hotel, or when visiting people, its become a late night treat. But we don't want one in our own bedroom.

When people are upgrading they always offer us the one they are replacing before they discard it/sell it on. I find this interesting. It's great for us/me/business if it's something we need but equally sometimes I wonder why they are replacing it. I have an incredible jewellers bench that I was gifted when the jewellers I worked for moved workshops. It wasn't until a little while later that I was suddenly like, why did they not keep it?

When I moved into my flat, it was the first place I've moved into on my own. People were so incredibly lovely and helped me to furnished it with extras they had and didn't want/need. Everything from mugs, cutlery, a fridge freezer, dinning table, pans, TV (they managed to get me to accept one!) everything. I'm so incredibly thankful.

Then next to bins on my street I've found stunning chairs I had wanted, huge mirrors i'd been thinking about, a rug, a coffee table, an old wooden ladder and plants to name but a few. And somehow, our home feels put together. We have very few new items. Our sofa, which was in fact ex-display, a coffee machine that we used wedding gift vouchers for and a chest of draws for Chris when he moved in. The rest are either gifts or second hand or reconditioned/recycled (looking for a hoover, you need to check this company out. I love our hoover ☺️)

I've slowly replaced certain items that were originally gifted but waiting to find the perfect thing. If I'm buying something new (or new to me/us) I don't buy something to just make do, I wait and save to buy what it is I truly want, until i find something that sparks joy and will last. An example of this is our mugs and pans. The mugs given when I moved in I have slowly replaced, donating the old ones either to the workshop or leaving outside in a box saying "looking for a new home". We now have two mugs which bring me nothing but pure joy to use. That's the other thing, as we are a family of 2, most things we now only have two of except for plates (we have 4) and cutlery. We have different types of glasses but only 2 of each kind. We have a couple of extra mugs that were wedding gifts. If people come over its either mismatch dinning using what we do have or, we'll ask them to bring extra bits in if its something that is missing.

I'm not saying you shouldn't have new items, But I think it's worth pausing every now and again and seeing why you are looking to replace an item and what it is we are replacing it with. How much do you need it, do you need extra of that item and whats the life span of the item.

I'm not a big consumer, of anything. But everything I have brings a joy, and it if doesn't then I don't give space to it.

So it feels like a natural connection and a true part of me with my business to use recycled golds and extending to "damaged" or imperfect stones for my new collection.

I've been learning a lot about Wabi Sabi since someone used the word to describe my work. The more I learn the more I feel connected to it and then more i feel intrigued. It appears to be hard to exactly put into words what it is, its not an aesthetics, its so much more but equally so much less than this. And this will be the start of my next blog.

Love, Rx

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