Beautiful Handmade Statement Necklaces and other Fabulousness from Neena Shilvock - Inspirations and Designs From the Week Gone by
Last week, as I posted, I was turning over the question of what to do with my wire lace peacock - it started life as a pair of Peruvian threadwork pendant/earrings, which I embellished with crystals and put together with some copper wire and yet more crystals to make a peacock - but I didn't quite know what to do with it - I threw the question open to a couple of jewellery makers groups - one in the UK, and the other predominantly with members from the USA - and having got loads of inspiration and ideas, decided on a simple handmade chain incorporating pearly beads and crystals to match the peacock, and to hang it asymmetrically. In folk art, peacocks are often drawn looking backwards at their tails - this may be because they are vain creatures, but the artists use it as a symbol of renewal as the feathers are renewed each year.
I made my peacock look back at its tail feathers too - I loved the curved shape it gave the neck - and it was lovely to be able to bend wire in the direction that it wants to go for once! I titled the piece Scherezade as it seemed to be so 'Arabian Night's Dreams', with its brilliant colours - and I love the haunting music by Nikolai Rimsky - Korsakov. I think the dancer in the ballet below might have worn this piece! The design seemed to flow - all I had was the bare minimum of an idea and my box of crystal beads, and one thing just followed the next till I felt as if I woke up and the finished article was staring me in the face - maybe I didn't make it after all and it was the elves that visited in the night - however, Santa's grotto, this ain't!
Once this piece was finished, I felt drained - it had absorbed all my creative energies and I turned my thoughts to simpler pieces that give me just as much pleasure. I had a few pendants and pieces of polymer clay I had made earlier, so I set about making them up into items that were wearable.
I like my jewellery to tell a story - as if you haven't guessed by now from reading my blog! I continually research my inspirations on the internet, gathering ideas and stories poetry and music, as the piece comes into being.
I made a water lily, on a lily pad out of polymer clay - hadn't quite decided what to do with it, but realised that by a happy accident, I had put in a fold over in the leaf that could be used as a bail. The two wires I had cured into the piece so I could attach it to something then became redundant - so I cut one off, and attached a little lamp worked glass and bead dragonfly to the other, which I coiled into a spring, so that the dragonfly appeared to be hovering over the waterlily - from that idea it was easy to take it further, into creating a lily pond with fish and snails and dandelion heads - I let my imagination run riot - and turned out a pleasant and summery piece with a three dimensional aspect to it.
Flowers in a Tornado
I have had these tornado beads for ages - I made them up from a tutorial by Lisa Niven Kelly of Beaducation, and I love their organic shape - it struck me - I mut be the only person - or one of a minute number of people - who needs a tutorial to make a messy bead - most people have to learn how to make their jewellery neat and tidy, but I had to do it the other way around! I paired them with some lucite beads and knotted waxed blue cotton for a light and pretty summer necklace. However, mindful that summer is a time for sun tan lotion, perspiration ( ladies glow! - I am told, but lets call a spade a big shovel here) I put wire in at the top, to keep the look pristine for longer! I made earrings to match too. It is a tangled necklace - but I have a secret weapon to keep the threads from turning into a hopeless knot - large safety pins! - placed strategically across the strands will allow transport of the necklace, completely safely, without the nuisance of untangling it each time it is worn - of course you have to remember to put the pins in when you take it off.
I had an abalone shell pendant set in Sterling silver, and I made up a little necklace in complementary colours to go with it - am wearing (test driving) it at the moment, and it feels just right around the neck. Some lovely zebra dyed blue howlite arrived in the mail, and I couldn't wait to use it, it was so pretty - I had a pewter dragonfly clasp that I was keen to use, and as it was meant for two strands, the howlite was put together with opaque blue seed beads, chrysocolla rectangles and silver coloured spacers, with a dangling dragonfly to match - there are earrings to go with this piece as well, on some lovely extra long surgical steel kidney wires - cant wait to see how they will go down.
I want to say a special thank you to those who write on the Caprilicious Jewellery Page on Facebook and leave comments on my website/blog - your encouragement means a lot, thank you very much. Also, those who have come back to buy a second piece from me - I often wonder whether you liked your jewellery if you don't write back - but when you buy a second piece - I am sure you did! My pieces of jewellery are like my little babies - and I send them out into the world - I can only hope you love them as much as I do - am I being fanciful?? and a bit overly sentimental, bordering on silly?? -almost certainly, but then I am new to this and am not blase' as yet - please forgive my enthusiasm :)
Catch you next week with another instalment of the Caprilicious Blog