Love Bug

Okay, so I haven't done any research on this, but I've been wondering if Volkswagen's Beetle design had its origins in ancient Egyptian scarabs. Anyone know for sure? Well, if not, this is an amazing example of how universal symbols unconsciously crop up in our lives and tie us together.

Strangely, the Beetle's history is intertwined with Hitler's desire to create an affordable car for his version of the everyday person. Originally called the KdF-Wagen (Kraft durch Freude "Strength through Joy"), the Beetle took flight after World War II to become the world's best-selling car design.

What am I digging about the story of the Volkswagen Beetle? Well first off, my curiosity is always peaked when a genuine concept for creating ease and accessibility, though slightly twisted, comes from an unsavory source, and then does a one eighty into something we seem to all adore and affectionately call the Love Bug.

Believe, Beth Hemmila: fluorite, fine and sterling silver

I like to think it means that any symbol tarnished by context always has the ability to be reborn into something new. A symbol is without a doubt universal, and its original meaning exists inside of us completely untouched by circumstance. Hence, the beetle is an ancient symbol that will continue to weave its way in and out through our collective unconscious.

I've never been gaga over beetles though I do remember having a Love Bug fixation at one point, so it makes sense that Egyptian scarabs (beetles) are oh so appealing to my design aesthetic. These tiny scarabs are just so....something...cute, round, compact, strong, sturdy, industrious, enduring, indestructible??

I don't know. They just make me smile :)

Believe, Beth Hemmila: fluorite, fine and sterling silver

The ancient Egyptians were consummate symbolists and knew how to elevate the ordinary into the extraordinary. They were able to see the immense strength and ingenuity in the dung beetles' livelihood and raise it to the level of awareness that allows us to believe our own ability to make something magnificent from seemingly nothing in our every day existence.

P.S. If you want a giggle be sure to watch this dung beetle video!


  1. Interesting, Beth. I also think that universal symbols generally come around to their goodness. I'm having a minor affair with creepy crawlies right now, yearning to make up some new designs. Maybe it's the bag of plastic crawlies I bought on a whim or the June bugs that are out right now. Loved the video. I will never look at a beetle, or a cow pat, in the same way again :)

  2. i love your "believe" necklace!

    i've tagged you if you are interested in participating, see my current post.


  3. fascinating. sounds to me like you are interested in jungian thought. we have a jung center here in asheville. I imagine you have one in portland as well. anyway, interesting connecting the scarab with the love bug!

  4. I think that is sometimes why the same idea ends up in many heads! We are all apart of the culture seeing the same things at the same time. Your santa fe necklace is so pretty!

  5. LeAnn, I am totally into this creepy crawlie thing too! Just created a spider design that I can't wait to post. Glad you are believing in the basic goodness of a universal symbol too :)

    Sandra, thanks for loving up "Believe"!

    Frivolitea, you caught my Jungian side coming out...how neat that you have a center in Asheville.

    Thanks Gaea for loving up my Santa Fe necklace. Just love that city :)


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