I am obsessed with charms! Big, small and all shapes! But have you ever wondered about meanings behind a certain charm or symbol? If you are curious like I was, then here is a little list!
The stories behind a lot of popular symbols are fascinating, and many have multiple meanings since they have been interpreted - and re-interpreted - by different cultures around the world for ages. There isn't enough space here to share everything about these unique shapes, but hopefully you will enjoy learning a little more about them!
A charm necklace can reflect different moods, goals or ambitions. What’s more fun than deciding which pendant to wear in the morning, or picking out the perfect (and symbolic!) gift to wish a friend or loved one well?
The stories behind different symbols have evolved in different cultures around the world for a long time. The following are some of the better-known meanings behind them.
Anchors: The anchor is a symbol for both hope and loyalty. When a ship raises its anchor, it is leaving on a new adventure. When the ship drops its anchor, it is securing itself. Let this charm encourage new journeys and provide certainty and trust in yourself. Anchors are all about being strong and stable. You can appreciate the deeper meaning of the anchor symbol - security, stability, and being grounded. It is a symbol demonstrating that a person is in tune with themselves and hold on to the values they believe in. The anchor can also represent a person who has been someone's rock through difficult times. For some people, the anchor represents always having a safe place to go home to. Especially for those who travel a lot, this symbol can have a very special meaning. Those who have had a tumultuous past, the anchor is a pledge to move on and have a better, brighter, grounded future. In this case, some people choose to wear a cracked or broken anchor, as a sign they are letting go of their inhibiting ways and moving forward.
Bird - Birds are believed to mediate between earth and heaven, the physical and spiritual worlds. A bird in flight symbolizes freedom and the spiritual development of the soul. A bird nest is associated with starting a family, predicting pregnancy, or possibly relocating / moving.
Butterfly - There is a Native American legend that says, " If you have a secret wish, capture a butterfly and whisper your wish to it. Since butterflies cannot speak, your secret is ever safe in their keeping. Release the butterfly, and it will carry your wish to the Great Spirit, who alone knows the thoughts of butterflies. By setting the butterfly free, you are helping to restore the balance of nature, and your wish will surely be granted." They are a symbol of change, joy, and color. Their flight appears as dancing, and a reminder not to take things so seriously. They have a sense of lightness and joy. They are reminders to get up and move. The butterfly is a powerful symbol for transformation. It leaves the safety of the cocoon in it's new form. This is an excellent image for anyone contemplating, or in the midst of a major change. A butterfly is a strong symbol of metamorphosis, with distinct stages. The butterfly is a reminder to make changes when the opportunity arises. Change and transformation are inevitable for us all, but it does not have to be traumatic.
Cat – Independence. The cat offers us an elegant reminder to “just be”.
Cross - The cross is a sign of blessing. This Cross is a symbol that reminds us to have faith. Let this charm provide you with the strength & confidence you need in times of uncertainty and lead you in the right direction.
Deer - The meanings associated with the deer combine both soft, gentle qualities with strength and determination. The deer symbolizes the ability to move through life and obstacles with grace, innocence and being in touch with your inner child, as well as being sensitive and intuitive. Vigilance, The ability to change directions quickly and the magical ability to regenerate and being in touch with life’s mysteries.
Dog - The dog symbolizes faithfulness and guardianship. Dogs are considered loyal and temperate and the dog is a symbol of a skilled hunter. Dogs symbolize courage, vigilance and loyal fidelity
Dolphin - symbolize balance, kindness and charity. They also promote safe travel. Dolphins move through life with grace and sense of playfulness.
Dove – We all know that the dove is a classic symbol of peace and hope. They can also symbolize love – you probably have at one time witnessed a happy couple release a pair of doves at their wedding – and motherhood.
Dragonfly - Dragonflies are a symbol of the power of change. Dragonflies live a short life, so they are a reminder to live life to the fullest.
Elephant – Unsurprisingly, these noble animals represent strength, honor and patience. They are usually thought of as very lucky charms! A symbol of huge strength and courage. Elephants are symbols of wisdom in Asian cultures, and are famed for their memory and high intelligence.
Evil Eye - We all have probably heard of some form of the evil eye. Perhaps you've given someone the “bitch eye” for cutting in line. In ancient times, having a symbol of the evil eye, often paired with the Hamsa Hand, was considered a symbolic way to bend the evil gaze back to the gazer. The evil eye charm was painted on boats or traditionally created out of blue, white and black trinkets.
Fairy - Spirits of peace. Originally worshiped as gods and goddesses, generally recognized as metaphors for the night sky and stars. Fairies symbolize nature, love, fate and destiny. Magical beings which bring something wonderful and fantastic, encouraging hope, joy and a sense of childlike innocence.
Feather – the feather has been an important good luck symbol in many cultures for ages. They can suggest ideas of flying or travel. Feathers were used by ancient Egyptians, Celts and Native Americans to invoke the sky gods or celestial wisdom, and often symbolized communication with spirits. In Christianity, they have represented the virtues of faith, hope and charity. Feathers represent the power of air and wind and symbolize prayer.
FlowersDaisy - symbolizes innocence and gentleness. Associated with loyal love, patience and simplicity.
Daffodil - symbolizes faith, honesty and forgiveness.
Lily - symbolizes purity, chastity and innocence
Lotus - symbolizes purity and enlightenment; birth and rebirth. Also a symbol for fertility and creation.
Rose - symbolizes hope and joy; used to represent love, especially a love that is pure.
Sunflower - symbolizes warmth, happiness, adoration and longevity.
Violet - symbolizes faithfulness, humility and chastity
Frog - symbolizes good luck, abundance, transformation, and fertility. The Egyptians saw frogs as symbols of life and fertility and they worshiped the frog Goddess Heget. Greeks and Romans saw frogs as symbols of fertility and harmony. Frogs assisted their Goddess Aphrodite. The Chinese believe the spirit of the frog means healing and good fortune in business.
Infinity - the infinity symbol reminds us of the endless cycle of existence and the limitless bounds of love.
Hamsa Hand - also known as the Hand of Fatima, the hamsa is a popular amulet in the Middle East and North Africa. The upside down hand, often with an evil eye in the palm, is a symbol of protection used to ward off the evil eye.
Heart - symbolizes love, unity, connection, compassion
Horse - Symbolize power, grace, beauty, nobility, strength, freedom an emblem of life-force. As one of the symbols in the Chinese zodiac, the horse in Chinese culture is equated with Gemini, and represents practicality, love, endurance, devotion, and stability.
Horseshoe – The horseshoe symbolizes good luck, fortune and protection. Horseshoes are sometimes nailed to a wall to protect a home.
Italian Horn - Also called a cornuto, corno, or cornicello, this symbol is of Italian origin. "Corno" means horn. The Italian horn is a symbol of good luck, a charm to ward off the evil eye, and good fortune in love.
Leaf – A leaf can mean many different things depending on the tree it is from. Leaves, trees and forests symbolize refuge and protection. A leaf could also be a reference to the tree of life, which symbolizes life, health, strength and rebirth.
Lotus Blossom - In Buddhism, the lotus flower symbolizes faithfulness and good fortune. This flower grows from muddy waters only to create a beautiful blossom, so the Lotus flower is also a symbol of rebirth.
OM - Om is the symbol for the sacred Hindu sound of "ohm", a mantra that people often associate with yoga and meditation.
Owl – In ancient times, the owl was associated with the goddess Athena, who represented wisdom and learning.
Rabbit - symbolize fertility, love and good luck
Seashells - played an important part in the religious symbolism of the early inhabitants of Mexico, where it symbolized birth and life itself. Some baptismal fonts are carved in marble in imitation of a giant shell, symbolizing Christian rebirth. Its use as a trumpet since time immemorial also symbolizes power and authority. A seashell represents spiritual gifts. To see whole and broken seashells, one is looking at the good and bad situations in one's life.
Starfish - Starfish represent infinite divine love, as well as inspiration, intuition, fertility, happiness, wealth, peace and love. When a starfish is injured, it has the ability to nurture back what was lost. It can move in any direction and can crack open any shell. Let this charm provide you with strength, healing and regeneration.
Stars - Stars in the sky are a thing of mystery, imagination, and adventure. Usually a starry sky is used as a backdrop to a romantic scene, where the hero and heroine stare off into the night sky and it's beauty. Symbolize wishes and good portents (as in the old custom of wishing on a falling star)
Swallow (also bluebirds and sparrows) - symbols of love and loyalty, good fortune and returning home safely.
Tree of Life - The tree connects heaven to earth, therefore symbolizes the connectedness of all life. It is often used as a symbol for family and harmony, and can symbolize wisdom and healing. Be like a tree; stay grounded, connect with your roots, turn over a new leaf, bend before you break, enjoy your unique natural beauty, keep growing.