Beautiful Handmade Statement Necklaces and other Fabulousness from Neena Shilvock - Inspirations and Designs From the Week Gone by
Cold and frosted over with icing sugar, the garden looked so pretty and magical, bringing fanciful thoughts to mind - and a degree of yearning for spring and the promise of summer and warmth. I thought I'd make a dragonfly - my first attempt at it, and once I'd shaped the wire and made the dragonfly, had to decide what to do with it. There was no particular design in mind - just the dragonfly that I had and a few lengths of wire woven leaves. Just at this point, I stumbled across a poem written by a woman who calls herself Susie - published in www.fairiesworld.com - this is how it goes
Down past my garden, underneath the trees,
There is a place of magic that no-one ever sees,
A little grassy clearing, plain at ones first sight;
But if you take the time to see, you shall find delight.
If you come to see this place, take heed:
you've found the Dell.
And so was born the idea of the Dragonfly's Dell. I know that dragonfly's are attracted to water, so there had to be an element of blue in the necklace, and I found some beautiful cobalt blue Cat's eye beads in my stash that I had forgotten about. I spent a restless night trying to imagine the necklace, but gave up in the end - the old brain was freezing over!
I looked at an article about jewellery trends - and it would appear that my love for the statement collar necklace has been borne out - it is and has been a lasting trend since autumn of last year - I must have had a premonition when I started to make them the year before - how smart is that!
It seems that collar necklaces can never truly go out of fashion. Their simple design makes them such a perfect statement piece, one that completes the whole look just by itself. The best thing about these necklaces is that they come in so many different styles which make them perfect for every occasion. And the latest is the detachable collar in a Peter Pan or Tuxedo style, to be worn over a T shirt or an outfit with a high neckline to glitz it up.
People think that collars are night time wear and showy - but if you look at the latest trend, ladies are wearing it as just the one piece of jewellery with a white shirt and denims, and it looks fabulous. I certainly wear my necklaces to my day job - apart from anything else it gives my patients something to focus on rather than the anxiety of what they think I am about to inflict on them!
So out of a fanciful idea and the following of a growing trend, came the idea for the Dragon's Dell Collar, made of a heavy duty silver plated copper wire frame, with its lapels at the front, and open at the front so as to be fully adjustable. Took it for a test drive, and it sits beautifully at the base of the neck. My anxiety with all wire jewellery is the spiky ends that can make life hell for the wearer - I certainly wouldn't wear a piece of jewellery if it was uncomfortable - it would remind me of my first pair of scratchy/ itchy Tweed trousers - I actually took said trousers off in the car during one very long and memorable journey! -I certainly wouldn't want to put anyone else through that- belated apologies to the very shocked Japanese people in the tourist bus who watched me do it - there are a few photographs floating around in Japan, I dare say!
The Daisies' Dance - from Daisy Time by Marjorie Picthall
Buttercups have honeyed hearts,
Bees they love the clover,
But I love the daisies' dance
All the meadow over.
Daisies are the sweetest flowers, reminding one that summer is here - daisy chains are meant to represent the sun, the earth and the never ending circle of life and this is probably the reason why they are joined up into garlands. To me they represent the sheer joy of the warmth of the sun after months and months of cold frost and bone chilling wind.
I grow loads of them in my garden - these are Shasta daisies - they have such a pretty ruffled edge, and the best thing about them is that all we do is cut them back in the autumn, and they grow back in summer - free from the stress of covering them up from the frost and having an empty spot to replant each year.
I thought it might be fun to try and recreate them - but that was easier said than done. My polymer clay efforts weren't up to scratch, so I chucked them, and started again with my favourite medium - wire. Although my daisies dont look like the ones above, they are pretty, and there are so many different types of daisy, so, if you look at them at a certain angle in a certain light, with a slight squint, they are pretty authentic, I'd say! The leaves of the real daisy aren't so pretty though, so I have used artistic licence and added colour with Czech 'Jablonex' crystal leaves as well as a few of wire. So I have Daisies and leaves dancing across my necklace - The Daisies' Dance.
Finally gave up on the postal system - between Royal Mail and the Postal system in the USA, the armband I posted out over two weeks ago has got completely lost - it certainly doesn't take two weeks for mail to get from here to there - just hope it's not lying in some dusty dead letter office and that the postman's wife likes it. Made a copper wire choker as a replacement ( in case the armband does turn up, didn't want her to have two of the same) and will try posting it out again - I hope I have better luck this time round.
Have a fabulous week, and I will catch up with you soon.
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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