What makes a piece of jewellery an heirloom?

My grandmother often told me stories of how her mother had distributed her jewellery. Her collection was divided into 14 lots, each lot numbered, and little pieces of numbered paper were folded and placed into a basket. They went from oldest to youngest, each picking a random lot. Being the magpie that she is, my grandmother was sorely disappointed that she hadn’t gotten the Diamonds and tried to trade with her siblings, but eventually didn’t because the jade ring she’d received was what she’d remembered her mother always wearing. Through mealtimes and her mahjong games, that slick of green never left her finger.

Funnily enough, my grandmother is the least sentimental person I know (I caught her tearing up old photographs once because they were getting dusty), and neither was she particularly close to her mother, but nostalgia seems to be part of the human condition. When push comes to shove, I think we all want something that reminds us of a loved one. Decades after her death, my grandmother can still picture her mother’s hands, the ring a permanent fixture, and with it the memories they shared.

There are no hard and fast rules on what constitutes an ‘heirloom worthy’ piece but there is general agreement that it’s a piece that is durable enough to last the generations, holds some kind of monetary value or rarity, and most importantly, holds sentimental value and meaning. I think we’ve all come to realise that the smallest and most insignificant of moments mean the most; making pillow forts or the weekly grocery shop. And if there was a way to keep a moment alive, most of us would want to.

That’s why we always urge our MADLY clients to wear their jewellery, rather than to keep them locked up in a safe. While every jewel of ours is made to be MADLY meaningful, their meaning grows and multiplies when you live your joyful, fruitful lives, and make memories that you’ll cherish forever.