Bracelets, necklaces, headbands, cuffs, sometimes even rings, made from Pony beads, other colorful beads, small plush animals, trinkets, charms, and more. They can have words spelled out [generally PLUR] or pictures made by bead patterns. They are given out or traded at raves and are a great way to make friends and create memories. Behind each piece of kandi is a story.
In the exchange of kandi a handshake is generally performed. The gestures symbolize the units of PLUR- Peace, Love, Unity, Respect.
Peace – both people make a peace sign and touch their finger tips.
Love – both people form a connected heart.
Unity – the touching of open palms.
Respect – the clasping of upright hands.
The kandi bracelets are then passed over the clasped hands, without breaking contact. In addition, PLUR generally dictates that the two hug afterwards.
So when do you trade kandi?
There really is no set time or place to trade kandi, it can be done anywhere. Generally, I give away my kandi to someone I was talking with or dancing with for a while, or someone who does me a favor, such as buying me a drink or taking a picture of my friends. It is also usually considered polite by PLUR to give someone a piece of kandi if they give you one.
The one thing deemed unacceptable by PLUR is to walk up to someone and ask for a piece of kandi. Those who run over to you yelling “GIVE ME KANDI!!!” are generally frowned upon.
It is also considered unacceptable to give away a piece that was gifted to you. Each piece of kandi has a memory and a friendship tied to it, so by giving it away it is as if you are severing that friendship.
My personal biggest pet peeve is when I try to give away kandi and someone refuses to accept it. Example: I was at a rave and a girl was telling me how much she loved my kandi necklace, so I took it off and told her to take it. She refused and said it was mine. I kept insisting I didn’t mind and I wanted my new friend to have it, but she wouldn’t take it. I felt it went against the principles of PLUR and was almost like rejecting my friendship. If someone offers you kandi, take it!
Here are a few of my traded pieces and the stories behind how I got them…
and came to work that weekend with this for me. He taught me the PLUR handshake and gifted me this. Although he never ended up taking me to a rave, he’ll always be the one to turn me on to them.””]My first piece of Kandi.
Kandi symbolizes the friendship and the unity that the rave culture brings. It is a great way to break the ice when making a new friend and it is a great way to create memories. Making kandi is also a lot of fun, it’s hard for me to see little trinkets now without wondering if it could be added to kandi. If ever you’re going to a rave, bring along a few homemade pieces of kandi. You wont regret it!