Saturday, December 17, 2011

Inheritance: How I met my Turkish friend

A friend of mine who grew up in Turkey asked me to give new life to strings of coral she had inherited from her mother.  The beads are simply stunning.  You can still pick up bits and pieces within that show the natural coral patterns.  

It all started with a train ride.  I take the train from Connecticut to Manhattan every morning where 'standing room only' is very common.  So if you can find a seat then you 'squeeze in' and attempt not to elbow anyone, get elbowed by anyone, or literally knock knees through your hour+ ride into the city.  Needless to say, if you ride the train daily you get to know people; probably way better than you expect.  Another fellow rider, now good friend of mine, was flipping through a Sundance catalog (highly recommend checking it out for those of you that like a little Southwestern style in your jewelry)  My Turkish friend and I were looking over her shoulder as she flipped.  Yes this was before we really knew each other ... but that is sort of how it happens on these train rides.

Our other friend, a clothing designer who works for Walmart --- yes that is a head scratcher, but she does have amazing style and can pull off just about any outfit. So our Designer friend points to a multi-strand turquoise necklace noting how much she wanted it and how lovely it would look with a flowing white summer dress for her upcoming trip to the Mediterranean.  Of course we agree, as long as it is her rock'n this outfit, but I notice the price and say wow it really doesn't cost that much to make a necklace like that.  And so it begins ... I am known as the personal jeweler of my train crowd.

The next day, or maybe it was a week later ... our time together blurs as the ride is pretty monotonous.  My Turkish friend shows up with a zip lock bag full of these gorgeous coral beads and says .. can you do something with these?   It's a 'classy' operation I run as the Train Jeweler.

I created a multi-strand necklace that starts at the collar and graduates the 5 strands. This has become an on-going saga about the length of the pieces I create for my friend. Anyway, for this version (yes I had to do multiple versions) I used diamond-shaped, flat connectors to graduate the strands. The color tones I used were inspired are from jewelry I saw all over India; including some coral tube beads I inherited from my mother-in-law who got them in India where she grew up. I did include a combination of beads from her mother and mine in this necklace --- thus the name of the piece. The neckalce is made from a combination of coral, orange agate, rust-colored jasper coins and carnelian (a very popular Indian stone seen throughout the inlays at the Taj Mahal), gold and gold vermeil Beading Daily

This version was completely taken apart, so the only thing left is the picture.  She decided that she wanted 3 simple long strands.  See Inheritance for the final version she now wears. Beading Daily 

No comments:

AntiquityTravelers on Etsy