Today I’m doing a twofer: I’m releasing a new playlist *and* a new set of necklaces. This playlist is arriving a little later in the month than I usually release them because I’ve felt torn about the kind of music that I wanted to share at this deeply weird moment in history. Usually I listen to peppy music while I work to keep my mood elevated, but I just can’t enjoy upbeat tunes right now. And although I have worked happily alone for several years, I have noticed increasing moments of sadness in myself. It’s taken a lot longer for me than many people, because I really cherish ample alone time, but even still, I have begun missing seeing my friends and my previous ritual of going to a restaurant every Friday with my husband.
On the upside, the social distancing has provided me with opportunity to reflect on my life and what’s important to me. That beings said, I realize that just having time to think is an enormous privilege, particularly at a time when so many people are worrying about money and access to health care.
Back to the playlist, this one is a little bit more melancholy than usual. For me, it can feel soothing to listen to music that acknowledges the sadness of the moment. I feel like it’s important to acknowledge that we’re in a scary moment and let ourselves feel the fear and sadness without letting those feelings become all-consuming. To that end, the songs in this playlist include a lot of my favorite gloom tunes from the early ‘00s. One of my all-time favorites on the list is one from The Microphones’ song The Glow Pt 2. The lyrics, “I could not get through September without a battle/ I faced death/ I went in with my arms swinging/ but I heard my own breath/ and I have to face that I’m still living/ I'm still flesh/ I hold on to awful feelings/ I'm not dead/ there's no end.” Those lyrics encapsulate this moment so well for me now - acknowledgement of pain and difficulty, of feeling the feelings, but with hope for the future. I’ve also included songs from Chelou, Okkervil River, Grandaddy and lots of other classics from my personal library of treasured tunes.As for the Janus necklaces, I am very excited about them. They are the same design and colors as the Janus earrings, but in necklace form. I have mentioned before hearing other makers say that it seemed silly or wrong to make jewelry at this moment in time, but I personally need moments of joy. And honestly, my sales have stayed steady, so I am not alone. We all need things to look forward to and to enjoy. At our present unsettled moment, receiving a self-gift in the mail can be even more fun right now than normally. I see my business as creating art for people to have in their lives. No one needs necklaces – they won’t keep you warm or fed or prevent your body from getting an infection. But they can keep us mentally healthy by providing little pockets of joy, which is also incredibly important. Those moments can look like different things to different people – for some, it’s making sourdough, for others it’s putting on earrings to wear for a Zoom call.
Besides providing new jewelry for people, it’s also helpful for me personally to keep to my schedule. And so I keep designing and making new pieces. I do miss having photoshoots with models, but I’m just looking forward to scheduling some once the danger from virus subsides. The playlist and the new necklaces are both below - enjoy!