Beautiful Handmade Statement Necklaces and other Fabulousness from Neena Shilvock - Inspirations and Designs From the Week Gone by
Hello people, how are you this week? Rain has stopped play for most of us in the UK this week and we've all been stuck indoors - all except the greatest dog lovers and most intrepid runners who still pound the streets in the downpour. I stayed indoors when I wasn't at work and finished Woodland Fantasy, and I'm so pleased that I had the time to do it.
I took a photograph of one of the junior doctors being fitted for an operating hood - I've requested one for myself and when I was showing her the pictures I took, she scrolled onto a picture of the necklace which was actually a close up of the beading. She mistook the beaded flowers for real ones - what a compliment! Unless of course, she has poor eyesight - I don't know her well, so couldn't be sure. Anyway, she was most impressed when she realised that they weren't a close up of the flowers in my garden, and I was thrilled with the compliment.
'I know a bank where the wild thyme blows,
Midsummer Night's Dream, Oberon, Act 2 Scene 1
I read a bit of Shakespeare as a child in school and the language in the Merchant of Venice seemed so difficult to understand, that I thought our teacher was a genius when she translated it into modern English for us so effortlessly. Eventually, I knew most of the play by heart as chunks of it were handed out to us to learn when we were naughty - and I had many many occasions to be hauled up for one thing or another. I eventually read A Midsummer Night's Dream as an adult, and watched the play in Stratford where it was purportedly written. I was totally taken by the romance and mischief of the play and I've tried to make my necklace resonate with that idea. As soon as I had the slab of labradorite come through the post, I knew it would represent a body of water one day - it has been with me for over four years now and it only just called to me a few weeks ago with an idea of how to use it. I don't want to sound all fanciful and 'artisty' - but the ideas don't seem to come straight away, but if I just wait, something seems to click and a necklace happens.
By the way, 'eglantine' is a brier rose and the woodbine plant is a creeper, much like a honeysuckle. I can see Titania, lying by the labradorite pool amongst the flowers, little creatures flitting and scurrying about. There are water lilies, lily pads, and even a few cobwebs dripping with raindrops. Little Vintaj brass lizards and crystal scarab beetles, as well as a dragonfly chase each other, and Titania is sure to arrive any minute, the scene is set for her.
These photographs resolutely refuse to pick up the flashes of light coming from deep within the labradorite - I would have had to shine a light over it but that would have changed the quality of the rest of the picture. The necklace is meant to sit close to the base of the throat, and has a toggle clasp which allows for an extension of around two inches. The beads at the back are hand carved fluorite flowers in two colours, as if there aren't quite enough flowers in the necklace!
I am totally overawed by Woodland Fantasy and can hardly believe that it came from my fingers. Wow! I'm still getting used to it. If you'd like to read more about the process involved in making it, and see regular progress photographs, do take a look at previous blog posts, if you haven't already.
I'm still out in the garden every chance I get, although I don't like the rain too much. Hopefully the heat wave predicted for next week materialises and we can enjoy a few days in the sun.
That's me for this week folks. Have a wonderful week, and I'll catch you next Friday, same time, same place.