Monday, 19 October 2015

Australiana Charms

Kangaroo Charm (chtr-cgnsw11515)-335

We’re not just known for kangaroos, koalas and deadly spiders the size of your head – Australia is home to one of the world’s most diverse cultures and has a rich history that will have even visitors saying “Crikey!”. As such, we’ve created a charm collection that captures the spirit and iconic images of the Australian way of life.

First, we Aussies ought to tell you about some of our history. It’s pretty essential to know how awesome we are. Aborigines were the natives of Australia before it got its name. There were over 300 different clans, 250 languages, and 700 dialects spoken by these Aboriginal people. English explorers, most notably Captain James Cook, claimed Australia for their own. Australia at this time mainly served as a penal colony for the worst of the worst criminals, but this stopped about 100 years later.

Other settlers who weren’t convicts started moving in around 1790, and the population of Australia started to really grow. Farmers began to grow successful crops all across Australia; unfortunately for the Aborigines, this meant being pushed out of their own land by “squatters.” Australia was officially named as a nation in 1901. Today, Australia has citizens from over 200 countries, making it one of the world’s most diverse nations. This multiculturalism makes Australia a desirable place for immigrants to settle and start a new life. Australia’s universal healthcare system makes sure every citizen has access to the best medical care.

All of these facts can be found in your history books or news feeds, but here are some things you may not know about Australia:

Australia was the second country in the world to give women the right to vote.

  • Aside from Athens, Greece, Australia has the largest population of Greeks.

  • The Great Barrier Reef has its own post office box.

  • Australians invented the term “selfie” (we’re awfully sorry about that).

  • Although Australia is home to the world’s largest and deadliest spiders, there hasn’t been a death from a spider bite since 1979.

Now that you know a little about us, let’s talk about some of our favourite Australiana charms and what they mean to us.

Platypus Charm – This little fellow is unique to Australia and is probably the world’s most interesting animal. Despite being a mammal, Platypuses lay eggs and hatch their young. They also have venomous spurs that they use to defend themselves, and the venom can cause intense pain for humans. Even more curious is that the platypus has no stomach, just an oesophagus and intestines. Platypuses are now protected by the Australian government after nearly becoming extinct from hunters who wanted to sell their fur.

Kangaroo Charm – What Australian charm bracelet would be complete without the country’s most iconic mammal? The kangaroo is one of the “unofficial” official animals on Australia’s coat of arms, the other being the emu. Visitors to the Australian Outback are always dying to see the country’s most famous animal. There are four different kinds of kangaroo (red, eastern grey, western grey and antilopine). Expect to see kangaroo crossings while driving through the Outback; these creatures, much like deer, have been known to hop out in front of moving vehicles.

Sydney Opera House Charm – When conjuring up an image of the most famous structure in Australia, the Sydney Opera House immediately comes to mind. The dazzling design of this iconic building was actually inspired by an orange, believe it or not. Jorn Utzon, the chief architect, realized his vision of sail-shaped towers after he was chosen out of 233 contestants to build the opera house. When put together, the sails create the shape of a perfect sphere. The opera house was opened by Queen Elizabeth II in October of 1973.

Vegemite Charm – We couldn’t resist making this charm. Australia is famous in part because of Vegemite, though many people don’t know what it is. Vegemite is a food paste made from brewer’s yeast and has a strong, almost beefy, taste. The spread gets its name from the vegetable extracts it contains and is very popular among Aussies. 9 out of 10 Australians have this tasty treat in their pantries!

Other charms in our collection include the world famous koala, kookaburra bird, and even a crocodile eating a tourist (that doesn’t actually happen; we just thought you’d like a quirky charm option). The love for the great wide expanse of this amazing nation is evident in the carefully crafted charms we sell. All of them are made in Australia, by the way, so no matter which one you pick, you’ll be getting your very own piece of the Outback to wear proudly on your charm bracelet.

Australiana Charms

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