Well, I'm back! I had a wonderful time in Nyngan - the View Club ladies were so very welcoming!! A big thank you to Di who organised for me to come out there and to Ruth for billeting me out for the night :)
I went with fellow Coolah resident, Eleanor Cook, the NSW Rural Woman of the Year who was speaking to these groups about herself and how she got to be voted as the NSW Rural Woman of the Year. It was fascinating to hear her story as one of 12 children (11 girls and 1 boy) in suburban Sydney, her life in PR and marketing, and her move to the country. As part of her new community she saw the town with the fresh eyes of a non-local and saw there was a need to revive the town which, over a period of many years, she worked so tirelessly on. The current town of Coolah, also recently voted as "community of the year" really has a new view on its existence and is determined to survive regardless of the closure of a large employer a few years ago and the rather devastating drought from which most of us are still recovering. It is wonderful to see the difference that one person can make - we tend to take these people for granted, but they work very hard to improve the lot of the majority, which they really should be recognised for! Eleanor's message to the ladies of Nyngan was to work out a plan - find what everyone agreed was important to improve, then work on it - keep the big picture, but work on the project in small bites - and as these projects are successful, celebrate your achievement with the community to keep them motivated and involved. By the time Eleanor had finished her talk, there were lots of motivated ladies, some of who needed new jewellery ;) - the feedback on my spring collection was dazzling! Thank you ladies!!
Speaking of dazzling I wanted to share a pic of this beautiful sunstone necklace that has gone to a new home with one of the Nyngan ladies - it was only made a couple of weeks ago as were a few of the pieces I sold this week - so I won't get the opportunity to share it again I less I post it here!
The necklace is made of large, smooth nuggets of sunstone - a plagioclase feldspar which has shiny flecks of orange-red suspended within the stone which catch the light as it moves and give a beautiful, understated flash. Of average hardness (6-6.5) it is usually transluscent and one of the most well known sources of sunstone is Oregon in the USA. When I was looking at designing this piece I was in a conundrum - it's such a unique colour that other stones and pearls didn't enhance either the sunstone or themselves so what? I tried silver with it - but it drained the colour. I tried gold but it was too 'brassy' looking. Then I had tried silver and gold together and hey presto - just enough and not too much.
Metaphysically sunstone instills good nature, restores a good view on life and allows the real self to shine through. Traditionally it is linked to luck and good fortune.
No wonder I like it! Do you?