A Bahamas vacation, beach wedding, and a sand dollar necklace

“Can you make me a necklace from a sand dollar?” I knew my client was asking this from her vacation in the Bahamas, and I knew the sand dollar was from her trip, but little did I know she had just gotten married on that vacation! And I’m so very glad I did NOT know this at the time, as things got a bit sticky with her one-and-only-sand dollar from her vacation wedding. 
First of all, I’d never attempted to make a sand dollar necklace (and yes, I did share this fact with her!) But I do love a challenge. So I started researching how to prepare the sand dollar, and I even ordered a few to practice on - I knew once she brought it to me I’d only have one shot. Gulp. 
She brought the shell home wrapped in damp paper towels and tucked inside a plastic container. (And if you didn’t catch it, there was a clue in that last sentence telling you where this is going.)

The first step was to soak the sand dollar so all the sand and other debris would wash away. So far, so good.

sand dollar soaking in water

But then, as I gently lifted it out of the water, this happened.

broken sand dollar

Yes, the precious memento from a wedding in the Bahamas was as broken as a heart in a country music song. As the grey hairs sprouted forth quickly from my scalp, I contacted my client.

Fortunately, she was kind and understanding as she knew it was possible the sand dollar would break. In retrospect, I believe traveling while keeping the tender shell moist may have weakened it, then soaking in water finished it off.

So where did the completed photo of the gold sand dollar necklace come from? I created it with one of the practice shells and she was thrilled, even though it wasn't the shell. Who would know?

If you have a special request, please feel free to contact me: suzanne@theelegantmuse.com

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