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Lucky for Life: Madison and Sydney Utendahl

There’s a reason the friendship bracelet has long been the sartorial symbol of platonic love. Colourful, characterful and one-of-a-kind, it’s an apt embodiment of what true connection feels like. As we get older and our relationships (hopefully) mature, there’s something lovely about the humble friendship bracelet evolving with us. A favourite for over twenty years, the Lucky bracelets’ charms and intricate woven style are the grown-up version of a childhood classic.

Here, we take a closer look at some of the dynamic duos we admire, whether they’re friends, sisters, or mothers and daughters. Because let’s face it, there’s something about the bond between women — how it blossoms, survives and thrives over time— that’s just so intriguing.

Madison and Sydney Utendahl compare their tight relationship to a romantic one: it takes work. The enriching bond between the sisters means they discuss it all, from everyday banalities, to the inner workings of their childhoods. In sister therapy sessions, they commit time to improving their relationship. While the duo share a love for self-care, their interests manifest themselves in totally different industries. Madison, the founder of Utendahl Creative, a social media marketing agency and design studio, is a budding media mogul who was profiled in Forbes’ 30 Under 30 in 2021. Sydney, a beauty consultant working on the research and development of different products, has taken her community’s reliance on her when it comes to skin advice and recently began her training as a licensed aesthetician. This Thanksgiving, their matching Lucky bracelets with Grazie charm forever remind them of their gratitude for one and other.

Would you describe your relationship as a typical sister-sister relationship?

Madison: Yes and no! In many ways, we have an incredibly strong and typical sister bond. At times, we finish each other's sentences. We have the same sense of humor, and the exact same voice — it freaks everyone out. Where I believe we have a unique relationship... We treat our relationship as we would a romantic one. We go to sister therapy, we spend a lot of time working on improving our bond and working through negative patterns. We also both deeply believe that individual growth leads to a stronger connection between the two of us.

Sydney: Yes and no! We are best friends but also nurture each other in a way some sisters don't typically do. We look out for each other and switch between who's the boss. Even when we fight we are always both committed to working it out at the end of the day, which I find to be very special.

What’s something you’ve learned over time about the other that’s surprised you?

MU: That what doesn’t serve one of us most likely doesn’t serve the other. That we are both deeply dedicated to personal growth and really believe that it improves all of our relationships, including our own.

SU: That Madison has changed. It sounds simple but it's a realization that was critical for us to move past any childhood issues that we have ever had with one another. Also this might sound corny but her resilience and commitment to bettering herself surprises me everyday. It's beautiful.

When was the last time you called the other and why?

MU: We speak on the phone everyday. Sometimes it is about some incredibly trivial things about our dogs; other times it’s about heartbreak, or something much deeper. We spoke this evening on the phone about hypnosis and meditation.

SU: We speak throughout the day, everyday. I called her this evening because I was having a bad day. Whenever I need a solution to a problem, Madison is really good at coming up with a game plan for me. She's organized like that!


If your relationship was a song, which would it be?

MU: I don’t hear lyrics, so I have no idea.

SU: Some old 90s R&B that my dad would play in the car. But I would be the only one who knows the lyrics.

What’s your favorite trip you’ve ever taken together?

MA: We did a week-long sister trip to Paris in 2016 that was very special. We spent a week exploring the city, seeing friends and spending time eating anything and everything.

SU: Probably Paris or Hawaii. Paris was very fun but I was also very sick and Madison helped me through it. She was my Mom for the week.

What is the last gift you gave the other and what was the occasion? Is there a memorable story that sums up why?

SU: Madison recently surprised me by sending me this random hot sauce I don't stop raving about every time I go to her house. I think she was fed up with me asking where she got it, so she gifted me my own.

Is there a book or movie you recently recommended to the other?

MU: I recently recommended Joy Luck Club. I am obsessed — I've never been more moved by book.

SU: I recommended The Year of Magical Thinking by Joan Didion. I also told her to start watching The Bachelor. Both very different vibes.

What’s the best advice you’ve either gotten from or given to the other?

MU: That the stories we tell ourselves can often be loaded with untrue, limited beliefs.

SU: I always am the little annoying voice in the background telling Madison to just do things no matter what anyone else thinks. And she always advises me to slow down. Every time I am anxious she calms me down with some very practical advice on how I can get things done.

Sydney and Madison Utendahl

Madison and Sydney's Carolina Bucci Lucky bracelet with Grazie charm

How are your styles different? How are they similar?

MU: Our styles are different in that Sydney is more experimental and forward-thinking and sexy in her style. I have more of a classic, boyish style/mode of dress. They are both similar in that we are passionate about fashion, love Prada & Issey as much as we do The Row and Sea.

SU: We dress differently but always will borrow each others clothing. I would say I am more experimental and Madison is more classic. We ask each other for advice on clothing all the time.

What do you admire most about the other?

MU: I deeply admire Sydney’s confidence and fearlessness. She is one of the most courageous and tenacious people I know.

SU: I admire Madison’s drive and her commitment to self-care. She has always been passionate about her goals and she motivates me to be the best version of myself (seriously).

What single word best captures your relationship?

MU: Growing.

SU: Healing.

Do you have any nicknames for each other? If so, what are they?

Both: Mad & Syd — pretty simple!

What do you thank your sister for regularly?

MU: For showing up and being there for each other. We are always, without fail, there for one another. Through thick and thin.

SU: For helping me with just about everything. Madison is so organized she will send me a Google calendar invite to coffee. She is constantly making sure I don't forget things and that things are planned out which I am forever grateful for.

What is something you would like to thank your sister for today?

MU: For sharing and being vulnerable with me.
SU: For being my forever best friend.

Madison and Sydney's Carolina Bucci Lucky bracelet with Grazie charm

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