Discussing Identity & The Way We Define Ourselves | AD

F193D5FE-2A86-4FC2-B33C-0B57CB8DB15E.jpg

identity (noun): The fact of being who or what a person or thing is.

I've been thinking about identity for a long time now. It's a topic that has been rolling around my mind for months, this act of defining our key characteristics, and choosing which parts of ourselves and our histories that we share with others.

Identity is something I've often struggled with over the years. When you've moved away from the place you call home, it can be hard to know what to call yourself. Am I a Liverpudlian, like the rest of my family, or does the fact I've lived in Leeds for the last decade undermine that? And as I've moved through corporate jobs, I've often wondered if spending all day managing P&Ls and creating spreadsheets means that I can't really call myself creative.

But the older I get, the stronger my sense of identity becomes. With every year that passes, I become more confident about who I am and what I want to stand for. And I think that's something worth celebrating, don't you?

So when the team at Nomination Italy got in touch to see if I'd like to come into store and learn more about their customisable bracelets, it felt like a really nice fit. Their jewellery is all about personality and identity - a subtle and beautiful way to express exactly who you are.

I headed down to their Leeds store, which is based in the White Rose centre last night (they also have a branch in Wakefield if that's closer to you), and with the help of the lovely staff, got to work on picking some charms to create a bracelet that is totally unique to me. It was fun to look through their hundreds of charms and identify the ones that felt most important to me, and it reconfirmed those parts of my identity that make me who I am.

So what did I choose?

First up, I went for a beautiful charm with the letter 'S' on it - the first letter of my own name, but also the first letter of my husband's name. I've always liked that we share the same initials - it's coincidence, sure, but it feels like yet another way in which we're a little team.

I followed that with a tiny cat charm for Lola, our gorgeous cat and third member of our little family. It always makes me laugh that before we adopted her, I didn't think I was a cat person at all - now I'm completely smitten with her, and I can't remember what our home used to be like without her causing mischief.

I chose a beautiful embellished Scorpio for my third charm. I know lots of people don't really resonate with their zodiac signs, but that's not the case for me - I'm not sure I could be more Scorpio! Us Scorpios can sometimes get a bit of a bad rep, but I'm proud of how passionate, determined and loyal we can be.

Of course, a huge part of this blog and my wider identity is my love of travel, and I couldn't think of a better charm to represent that passion than a little nod to my beloved NYC. That city has been the setting for so many important moments in my life, from getting engaged to making memories with my lovely family, and it's nice to have that little reminder of my special place sitting on my wrist.

And finally, I chose a beautiful rainbow charm with the word love embossed on it, for two reasons. One, because as cheesy as it sounds, I'm so lucky to have so much of it in my life, and two, as a little reminder to keep building a life that I truly love, something that I'm so passionate about.

It feels so nice to have this gorgeous piece of jewellery adorning my wrist, a little reminder of who I am and what's important to me for whenever my sense of identity wobbles. I think the bracelets and the charms would make such a beautiful and thoughtful gift too - plus, as you add to your bracelet, you release more of the plain charms which you can then pass on to somebody else to create their own unique piece of jewellery too. I love that once my bracelet is brimming with little mementos, I'll be able to pass a blank bracelet on to my Mum or sister to get them started.

Because there are so many charms to choose from, I'd really recommend going in to store if you can. The staff are incredibly helpful and know the range inside out, so if you have something in mind, they'll be able to make personal recommendations. Plus, it's so much easier to lay the charms out side by side and see how the different themes look together.

If you're interested, get yourself down to a store pronto, as they're running a promotion this weekend that means if you spend £35 on composable links, you get the rest of the bracelet for free! That means you can really focus on picking those charms that mean the most to you, or the person you might be buying them for.

I'd love to know what you think - are you a fan of these little nods to our identity? What sort of quirks or personality traits do you think you'd want to wear on your bracelet? I'd love to hear!

*This post is in collaboration with Nomination Italy, but as always, all views (and personality quirks!) are my own