Beautiful Handmade Statement Necklaces and other Fabulousness from Neena Shilvock - Inspirations and Designs From the Week Gone by
I am definitely a Citizen of the World with no fixed national identity, religion or creed - a free (ish) spirit, and I stand by these principles when I make my jewellery - I would hate for my customers to be from any one ethnic community or need to dress in a particular style to wear my jewellery. However, as my formative years were spent in India, I do tend to lean towards the Eastern when I select my focal elements. I do try, however, to give the piece a twist, with surprise elements that set it apart. I particularly love the Nepalese style of jewellery making, the coral, turquoise and lapis lazuli that is sprinkled liberally into each piece - and I love the Ghau box - the little box element that the Tibetans use to hold a prayer, or a lucky gemstone - I love that only the wearer knows what is inside the box. This aspect really appeals to the child lurking inside me - the need for a secret hiding place that only I have access to!
I have made a number of pieces using a Ghau box as a focal, but usually in the most unexpected way - have a look at some of these...................
I think my jewellery can definitely be called 'Fusion' - combining the bits of the East and West that I like - and in my opinion, the 'twain have met and are comfortable bedfellows!
With my next piece however, the fusion lies in the mingling of a Nepalese/Tibetan pair of 'necklace arms' made by my favourite Limbu artisans, and a pendant made from a vintage Rajasthani necklace (I love that I can take a piece of jewellery apart and reuse the elements) this one has four strands of white howlite beads and has ended up looking very Eastern indeed - still, it will grace a LBD at party time! And, no one else will have one like it! Because the Nepalese elements are made of brass, I spent some time cleaning them with alcohol, varnishing with Protectaclear, and burnishing with Renaissance wax, so that the colour is sealed in and maintained. Most jewellers swear by this wax, which is apparently used by the British Museum to coat its precious jewellery - but I go 'belt and braces', so my jewellery has some Protectaclear, which is jewellery varnish, as well.
A Queen's Ransom
This picture of poppies in the midst of bluebells inspired me to create my next piece. Poppies surround us at this time of year, with Remembrance day around the corner.
This necklace is most definitely a Western take on an Indian design - the Indian design would have little pearls or silver bells dangling from the necklace, and I have used turquoise blue seed beads, and little Czech pressed glass bluebells. The 'poppy' is a carnelian slab nugget, beautifully translucent - this can be seen when it is held up to the light. The bluebells have a shimmer of their own, and unfortunately, my camera is unequal to the task of photographing that beautiful sheen.
And, finally, SHADES OF GREY - shimmering, shining Aurora Borealis finished black teardrops, pearly Czech pressed glass flowers, black, grey and silver crystals in a multi strand necklace with a really beautiful Mother of Pearl flower for a clasp. I am sure that there at least fifty of those shades of grey in this necklace - held up to the light especially with a bit of movement.
Susan, from the Flattering50 blog featured Caprilicious Jewellery on her page this week - this is the third time this year! Read her blog here http://flattering50.blogspot.com/2012/11/holiday-gift-idea-mix-media-jewelry.html
Thank you, Susan!
That's as much as I had time for this week - have a good weekend, and I will catch up with you same time, same place,
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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