Beautiful Handmade Statement Necklaces and other Fabulousness from Neena Shilvock - Inspirations and Designs From the Week Gone by
Hello readers, thanks for joining me again today. Of the saddest words, 'If only' are probably the worst. This week, I'm feeling nostalgic for my youth - if only I was younger - and I won't tell you by how much, as some things are best left to the imagination, I would have learned to dance. There was a dance class after school hours that I yearned to attend, but I wasn't allowed to join it.
Instead, I was sent to a piano class at lunchtime notwithstanding the fact that my fingers were like bunches of bananas, I was useless at it and the beatings from the nuns every day only emphasised that. A piano was duly bought for me to practice on at home, with the notion that 'if you practice hard enough, and long enough, you can be good at anything', completely disregarding a singular lack of talent - I felt like an orangutan sitting at the instrument, banging out all the wrong notes and hated the piano for broadcasting to everyone loud and clear how useless I was, with every bum note I struck.
All I ever wanted to do was go to the dance class and I think it would have helped with deportment, weight control and a paralysing self - consciousness and diffidence when it came to public performance. Unfortunately it was never to be, so I just have to feed my love for that art form by watching others and looking a pictures and paintings.
The drawings of Edgar Degas are some of my favourite ballet pictures, and I once spent a whole day at an exhibition, lost in their magic, forgetting where I was and not noticing anyone around me. When I get this feeling of nostalgic yearning, I've decided that I shall assuage it with a piece of jewellery using a dance form as inspiration.
The mint green dragon's vein agate beads came from Jaipur, as did the pendant. Of course at the time, I just picked up what caught my eye and they lay in a box together until I looked at a few Degas images and Bingo! the necklace was born. I added tiny pearls, and silver foil beads, also from Jaipur and I was done. Smoky topaz is one of my favourite stones and the plump gems in the pendant, cushion cut into these faceted beauties caused me to fall in love at first sight.
Misty Copeland was the first African-American woman to be named a principal dancer at the American Ballet Theatre. Now, with the help of the NYC Dance Project, she’s recreated some of the famous ballet paintings of Edgar Degas.
To see more pictures of the NYC Dance Project have a look at this article.
I made my first version of Feria a few months ago and placed it at the Mitchell Art Gallery where to my surprise and pleasure it was snapped up almost immediately. In the meantime I had so many enquiries about it that eventually I decided to make another one, and here it is. This version is a bit more colourful than the original necklace and I hope it will be received with the same degree of enthusiasm as the first.
I've been working on a little collection of formal Bling jewellery to wear to parties - perhaps parties with your boss or your future mother in law - something where letting your hair down and tequila shots are not part of the deal. The necklaces will be ready in the second or third week of October, and I look forward to unveiling them.
Well, that's all I have for you folks. Have a lovely week and I'll catch you next week, 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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