Since his retirement in 2010 at the age of 91, Marvin Soles of North has taken up the hobby of making bracelets and giving them away as gifts wherever he goes. Photo by Sherry Hamilton.
Marvin Soles keeps a supply of his bracelets on hand to give away when he goes out. Here, he is shown with his daughter, Rochelle Bartlett. Photo by Sherry Hamilton.
Marvin Soles of North, has always been a hard working man. After retiring from his own business, E. M. Soles Hauling, he got a job as a security guard at the Yorktown oil refinery and worked there another 27 years. He was always at work an hour early, and he only took time off for major medical problems, such as when he had colon surgery and when an aortic aneurysm ruptured (earning him the name "Marvin the Miracle Man"). He finally stopped working when the refinery closed in 2010. He was 91 years old.
Soles’s daughter Rochelle Bartlett and her best friend, Carmen Hart, whom Soles considers his adopted daughter, soon realized that mowing the grass and keeping house didn’t give him enough to do during the day. So Hart, who lives in Indiana, sent Soles a kit for making bracelets out of beads. Something about the craft caught Soles’s imagination, and he’s been making bracelets ever since.
On a work surface fashioned out of a card table and a puzzle table combined, Soles has boxes of beads, spacers, rondelles and other baubles that he threads together in various combinations on clear stretchy elastic string. Once the beads are threaded, he simply ties off the ends. While he favors turquoise and pale pink, he makes the bracelets in a wide variety of colors and shades—blue, black, brown, yellow, red, green, and many colors in between.