Sunday, May 4, 2008

Badge Lanyard Jewelry - Is It Really Jewelry?

I admit to being a bit addicted to checking my site statistics on Site Meter. Occasionally I'll see a visitor has found me from a Google search. I decided to check a few terms and "Lanyard Jewelry" had my Etsy shop as the third listing on the page. Cool! Then I checked out some of the other sites on the page.

One site had lanyards they called "jewelry-style" made from several shades of candy colored, randomly strung, single size beads. I also can't tell what they're made of, and there's no materials description other than "beads", but they show up on a lot of different shopping sites at a very inexpensive price point, so they must be mass produced and I'd guess acrylic or glass.

I get how they're "jewelry-style", since they're not nylon or simple ball-chain lanyards, but they're not quite the kind of jewelry I'd put on if I were out to complement my business attire. Perhaps if I worked in a store catering to casual clothes shoppers, or needed a bright, fun lanyard for my whistle because I was a teacher, or camp advisor, they'd be ok. But if you invest a couple hundred dollars or more in one business outfit, why spend less than $10 on something everyone will notice? If everyone around you wears a badge every day, you get into the habit of glancing at them and when someone's lanyard is unique, it catches the eye - for better or worse.

I did see a number of lanyards on other sites that were quite lovely - handcrafted ones that the creator had obviously taken time to design for style. What I didn't see were lanyards that could be worn for any other purpose - the clasps are all permanently fixed to a badge clip and even if you put that at the back of the neck, the design doesn't go all the way around or have an interesting "focal" point, so it doesn't quite work as a necklace.

Which is why after searching the internet for jewelry style badge lanyards that didn't quite fit my requirements, although beautiful and well made, I ended up making my own.

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