Beautiful Handmade Statement Necklaces and other Fabulousness from Neena Shilvock - Inspirations and Designs From the Week Gone by
No, I haven't been slaying vampires in my spare time, or even as my main occupation - I have been playing with my Dremel - I buffed everything - if he had stayed still for a couple of minutes, I would have buffed the cat! It took me a while to actually take the Dremel out of the box - I had this irrational fear that it was going to bite me, so I did it in stages - took one whole day to charge the battery (even though it has an hour turnaround) - but, 'you've got to do these things properly don't you' - was how I rationalised my procrastination. Eventually I ran out of excuses, and then went for it. Now, of course, I am an old hand and am blithely buffing away - everything is shiny in our house now!!
I bought a tutorial by one of the teachers at Polydays 2012 - one of the ladies at the meet had made it, and was wearing hers, it looked fab, very much the stuff I want to make. A lot of polymer clay people make faux gemstones - faux coral, and turquoise and all sorts - but I would rather use real gemstones if I decide to make that sort of jewellery. In the modern jewellery I want to create - all angles and swirls and colour - I am happy to use polymer clay and be proud of it. It is such a modern material, and lends itself to all sorts of new techniques - I love the challenges it presents. I intend to combine it with wire and all sorts - the possibilities are endless.
SORBET - design credit Bettina Welker
After this, I was getting wire withdrawal symptoms! So I sat myself down in front of the telly with one of my enamel pendants I made last week- the one I like the best, and devised this necklace.
It is named Moonflower for the flower I have fused onto the centre of the pendant with glass. The Moonflower opens at night and remains shut during the day. It is an Ipomea, and grows prolifically in India. To go with the night time theme, I constructed a web of stars around one of the beads, added a ceramic owl and some grey and white ceramic beads which I bought in Greece, to the necklace. To reduce my wire cravings, I added a wire bail, embellished by a little flower.
I have a link to a website which shows a real time video of a moonflower opening which I found fascinating - I invite you to take a look - it is fascinating, and rather beautiful - http://www.moonlightsys.com/themoon/flower.html
Let me tell you about the Absinthe Fairy :-
Absinthe is an anise flavoured spirit, which is also flavoured with fennel, and the flowers and leaves of the 'grand wormwood'. It has anywhere upto 89% alcohol and tastes of licorice!
Absinthe traditionally has a natural green colour due to the chlorophyll in the herbs used, but may also be colourless, and contains 'thujone' which was thought to be a dangerously psychoactive drug - this reputation has been proven undeserved. Much beloved by the Bohemians, it was even added to ordinary water by the common folk - to purify the water - wish I could use that excuse!
The Absinthe Fairy is a green fairy, and is a metaphorical concept of artistic enlightenment and exploration, of poetic inspiration, of a freer state of mind, of new ideas, of a changing social order. Absinthe was the drink of choice of the Bohemians in Paris in the 19th century, and they called it 'La Fee Vert' - or the Green Fairy!
I made a necklace from a string of beautiful Aurora Borealis coated green crystal briolettes to which I added silver and green crystal, and I felt that the resulting necklace had to be named after her - it is exactly what an Absinthe fairy would wear.
The Blue Fairy -or- The Fairy with the Turquoise Hair
The Fairy With Turquoise Hair (La Fata dai Capelli Turchini) is the original 'Blue Fairy' as picturised by Disney from Carlo Collodis tale The Adventures of Pinnochio. Disney, however, turned her into a blue eyed blonde! She appears at regular intervals to admonish the little wooden puppet to avoid bad or risky behaviour, and guides him out of the bad habit of telling lies. Eventually, she breaks the habit, forgives him, and gives him a human form.
Turquoise blue is one of my favourite colours, and I simply love the deep blue of these briolettes, coated with the iridescent Aurora Borealis shimmer. I made a simple necklace with them, along with shiny, sparkly, 'stardust beads' - simple is not usually my style, but the crystal is so beautiful, it would be criminal to try and add other elements that distract from it - so, here we have it - the simple little Blue Fairy necklace...................
I had a few beads left over from the two strings I had bought - they were mightily displeased at being left behind - I could hear them cussing and muttering - so, (after all, who am I to ignore the need of crystal briolettes to be admired) I put them into my next piece - KINGFISHER. What better example of shiny blue and green can there be? ( a peacock, I suppose, but lets pretend that we didn't think of that ) The inspiration for this one was from the way the briolettes are sold - with plastic spacers between them, to prevent them from breaking. I used silvery tube spacers - have had them for the longest time, and always wondered what I would do with them - now I had the answer! Three strands of blue and green shimmer, separated by silvery tubes with the faintest hint of a design imprinted on them - delicious!
I had to take loads of pictures to get a reasonable facsimile - the shine from the Aurora Borealis coating, especially on the blue thwarted me at every turn - and I still feel, that I did not do justice to the necklaces. I will have to research how to photograph crystal - I am sure there is a trick or two I can unearth with a bit of diligent Googling.
I have a bit more bling in my stash, and no doubt it will all make it's way out of the box soon - after all, Christmas is coming, the goose is getting fat, etc, etc,
Catch you all next week, have a good one
I'm Neena Shilvock. and I'm crazily addicted to jewellery. I've been designing and making quirky and interesting statement necklaces for the last five years and my passion hasn't cooled off one little bit - in fact it has got worse, such that I'm even dreaming jewellery.
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