This isn't just any turquoise disc. Its an antique Chinese Bi disc, a symbol of harmony and longevity, in mottled turquoise with the some of the rock of the turquoise coming through on the front, while on the flip side, there is even more, giving the disc a textured variation that a modern piece of turquoise would not have. It is large, at 2 1/4 inches across and 7 mm thick. It hangs by 3.5 mm turquoise stabilized beads.
Because the turquoise is both a strong and soft colouring, I have chosen to use large polished nuggets of an unusually soft blue chrysocolla. The size varies between18 mm by 1 inch long, to a large 21 mm by 1 11/4 inches long.
The silver is the very special Karen Hill tribe fair trade silver from Thailand. Their silver is nearly 98% pure silver. I mostly choose to use their silver because each piece is like a miniature bit of sculpture, individually crafted and created. I know that artisans in Northern Thailand produce this unique silversmithing in small villages, involving whole families in the process. Their work is fairly paid, and as a result, their beads are much more expensive. But a family is supported and wonderful beads and jewellery are produced in high quality silver. The two beads on either side of the pendant are quite amazing bits of art work, at 17.6 mm. The larger silver beads have a swirl pattern in a fairly heavy weight, and are 22
I have used a silver toggle clasp, again made by the Karen hill tribes of Thailand, in which they have twisted and slightly woven the silver. Toggle clasps are easy to use and secure. My silver name label is attached at the clasp.
In the middle of the necklace strand are 2 hand carved, signed, boxwood ojime, with inlaid horn eyes. Carved on the beads belly are prancing dragons, a nod to the Chinese Emperor, his power and playfulness as well as the universal source of energy, or "Chi". Ojime were carved, decorative toggles used by the Japanese to support their Inro, or a box-like purse for men. These are not old pieces. But they are made by master carvers in China.
I have chosen to use the classical Chinese knotting on this necklace because it makes this necklace lighter to wear and more comfortable. It also sets off the design. It is a silk/polyester cord with the traditional Chinese “flat knot” as well as the “button knot”.
The cord can be cleaned by slightly wetting the cord, adding a bit of washing up liquid onto a sponge, dabbing the cord with the sponge, then, with a fresh sponge, rinsing the soap out (all with dabbing movements). And lastly, taking a tea towel to pat it dry, and then leave it in the sun to dry naturally. I have only needed to do this occasionally but when I have, the cord comes out like new. It is easy to do but the writing up makes it sound complicated. It is NOT.
The necklace is 17 1/2 inches long with a 2 1/2 inch pendant drop.
The necklace comes, like all my necklaces, with it's own silk brocaded pouch bag, made by the Shanghai tailor.
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Unique, stunningly chic gemstone necklaces, known as wearable art