Beautiful Handmade Statement Necklaces and other Fabulousness from Neena Shilvock - Inspirations and Designs From the Week Gone by
Hello folks, thanks for joining me today. Another very cold week has gone by and I've been up and down to Manchester to take part in interviews on behalf of Health Education England, thankfully on the right side of the table. It was mighty cold up there with the freezing air blowing off the Pennines, turning my breath into little icicles. Back home, I turned the heating up full volume and thawed my bones out by an open fire and turned my attention to my beads and baubles once I felt human again.
The interviews were held at the Etihad Stadium which is the home of Manchester City football club - the club is owned by Sheikh Mansour of Abu Dhabi who reputedly bought it for a mere £210 million. Well, what's 210 million to someone who owns a £400 million yacht!
Ornaments have been made from shells for aeons - conch shells come to a point at both ends and the inhabitants of these lovely shells are marine gastropod molluscs. The molluscs are used as food and fish bait, and can even produce pearls. I found slices of conch shells in a shop in Portobello market in London and thought that they were so pretty that I had to buy them. I've hoarded them for over four years now and decided to finally use one of them in a piece of jewellery. I wrapped the slice of conch shell in yards of wire and decided that it needed a rather special necklace to go with it. Shell beads are used in shamanistic rituals in tribes all over the world. I used beads in keeping with this notion and added Chinese bone, Nepalese coral, and African turquoise to the necklace in generous amounts, making it suitable for an international shaman.
Nefertari came into being when I wrapped a couple of citrine teardrop beads that had slightly misshapen points in wire to disguise the tips. I liked the effect so much that I wrapped all the beads I had in my stash as I watched television, and then had to find a way to use them in a necklace. I'm very fond of the teardrop shape and have made a number of necklaces in the past with colourful crystals, and I reused that template to make a two stranded piece, along with turquoise and sea sediment jasper. When finished the colours in the necklace reminded me of the bust of Nefertari in the Museum in Berlin - The bust of Nefertari was created around 1340 BC by the court sculptor Thutmoses. The limestone core has several layers of stucco on the crown and shoulders, and there are also small areas of stucco patching on the face. The necklace on the bust is coloured red, blue and gold, and must have been stupendously beautiful in its day.
I see this one worn with an evening dress, but also over the buttoned up collar of a plain shirt during the day - have you any other styling suggestions?
I've been active on Instagram recently, having been encouraged to do so by a friend and posted a picture of a copper bracelet I made a few years ago. A lady got in touch with me and asked me to make one for her - who says copper bracelets have to be boring? It's bad enough that one suffers with joint pain without having to add insult to injury by wearing ugly copper bracelets. This is what I came up with for her.
That's all I had time for, folks. I am working all weekend and I'm keeping everything crossed that it will remain quiet for me. Have a fabulous week and I'll catch up with you next Friday, same time, same place,