I've had the same jewelry box since I was eight, a small pastel clamshell container my grandmother gave me around the same time I first got my ears pierced.
It's pretty much the perfect size for an eight-year old who just bought her first pair of earrings (Halloween bats, if you want to know), but maybe not for a twenty-eight year-old. I don't have a lot of jewelry, mostly because I have a weird allergy to metal that makes me break out in oozing hives, but I do have a few thing I care about - my engagement ring, a string of antique glass Mardi Gras beads my dad gave me, an Indian-head penny pendant that belonged to my firecracker Great Aunt Ruth - along with some earrings and costume jewelry for work. It all stopped fitting inside the jewelry box long ago.
Several weeks ago, I decided it was time to start looking for a new box. I tried my regular discount store stomping grounds before moving up the ladder to Kohl's, Amazon, and even the mall department stores, where I felt even more bedraggled than usual. ("Those are a seasonal item," the woman at the jewelry counter sniffed.) I utterly failed to find anything that didn't smell like toxic glue or look like it was made for a five-year-old. Jewelry boxes? For grown women? I might as well have been looking for a whalebone corset.
Tonight, my quest finally ended in the clearance section of Bed, Bath, and Beyond. There was one jewelry box in the entire store - made of pretty red-stained wood with a glass top, a little dinged, but still elegant. (And not smelling of toxic glue.) I brought it home, cleaned off my shelf in the bathroom, and transferred everything to its new home.