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Bead of the Week

jade newThis is a lovely hand-carved pendant of natural Nephrite Jade from New Zealand. Maori designs carved in jade are steeped in religious and spiritual belief. They tell stories of ancestors long lost, depict spirits from the heavens, earth, and underworld, show historical lineage and paint images of the natural world that surround and surrounded them. They are no doubt beautiful, but they’re more than a form of art. For Maori they create a strong connection with their ancestors and the natural world they live in. It was believed by Maori that as a carving was worn against the skin it absorbed some of that person's essence. As carvings were passed down through the family they absorbed essence from each family member, creating a direct ancestral connection through the necklace itself. This is one reason why Maori design is so special, it is more than just an art form.

This special piece measures approx. 70 mm long (approx.. 2 3/4") x approx. 35 mm. (just shy of 1 1/2") at its widest point. Thickness is approx. 3 mm. Hole at top for hanging is approx. 2 1/2 mm. wide.

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boho bracelet 2Gypsy, Boho, Bohemian, Ethnic, Hippie -- whatever you choose to call it, it's FUN!

In modern usage, the term "Bohemian" is applied to people who live unconventional, usually artistic, lives. The original "Bohemians" were travellers or refugees from central Europe (hence, the French bohémien, for "gypsy").

At the beginning of the Bohemian 'movement', it was said that gypsy girls themselves "... are sexy and delightful precisely because they do not give a hoot for fashion."

When the style was first identified, it was the early 20th century. Fast forward to the 60's & 70's when major designers started to routinely promote the "peasant look" and selling a range of "uniquely eccentric clothes". (How many of you still have some of those in the back of your closet, like me??)

Fast forward again to the late 1980s, when variants of the short and fundamentally un-Bohemian rah-rah skirt (which originated with cheerleaders) were combined with leather or demin to create a look with some Bohemian or even gothic features. New names emerged, like 'hippie chic' and 'boho-chic'. Similar styles were sometimes referred to as "bobo" or "ashcan chic" or "luxe grunge" -- with leading proponents including actresses Mary-Kate Olsen and Zooey Deschanel.

boho necklaceWhatever it's called, and whatever the iteration/era, we L.O.V.E. it. Shown here are a couple of our favorite boho designers/sellers/suppliers -- check them out and be inspired! Silk wrap bracelet at upper right is from BohemianEarthDesigns on Etsy;  Shark tooth necklace from EarthSignFla on Etsy.

If you enjoyed this post, you might also enjoy:

Give To Me Your Leather

Great Books on Jewelry Design

and

Assemblage, Steampunk & Mocki Designs

Until Next Time,

Sheila

 


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