Egypt’s Wearable Heritage by Jolanda Bos

Egypt’s Wearable Heritage by Jolanda Bos

Jolanda Bos is an archaeologist who has been travelling to Egypt for over 25 years. From the 1990s onwards she has worked in different excavations in the Egyptian deserts. She brings her archaeologists eye to an accessable yet scholarly study of Egypts’ contemporary yet still traditional and artisanal culture. This beautifully glossy book with its abundance… Continue Reading

Belonging and Belongings in the Land of the Iceni – Natasha Harlow

Belonging and Belongings in the Land of the Iceni – Natasha Harlow

This paper explores the social and cultural transitions which occurred during the late Iron Age and early Roman periods (circa 100 BCE-200 CE) in the modern counties of Norfolk, Suffolk and Cambridgeshire. I discuss issues of identity (belonging) and how people may have responded to these changes through portable personal objects (belongings). I use the… Continue Reading

Tensifa – Tetouan Morocco by Sarah Corbett

Tensifa – Tetouan Morocco by Sarah Corbett

Tetouan is a town in Northern Morocco with Strong Historical links to Grenada. In 1492 the Nasrid dynasty surrendered their rule of the Emirate of Granada. The surrender led to the mass arrival in Tetouan of those fleeing Spain. Moors who were of diverse religious and ethnic groups arrived in great numbers following an agreement… Continue Reading

Yaroslava Kellermann – Designer

Yaroslava Kellermann – Designer

About myself My brother and I were raised in a family of teachers. Except of math and history, both of my parents studied music, so we were surrounded by it and by books. The last years of the Soviet Union and the first of Ukrainian independence were extremelly harsh, but I remember that my mom… Continue Reading

Susan storm .. Aka Savanna Caravan

Susan storm .. Aka Savanna Caravan

My mother wore Mikimoto and Balenciaga. She hated travelling. I am eternally peripatetic, wear Uzbeki, oud and Turkish coats. We were always embarrassed by the other. She willed me her fox fur, but I wanted her rope of Amber beads. The real legacy she left me was the eyes and nose of a savvy collector,… Continue Reading

l’Argent de la Lune / Das Silber des Mondes a book review by Alaa Eddine Sagid

l’Argent de la Lune / Das Silber des Mondes a book review by Alaa Eddine Sagid

Interest in North African jewelry dates back to very early French colonial times in Algeria. Tens of publications are readily available for the keen and the passionate to survey the wealth of adornments from this rich region. Early explorers, ethnographers, photographers and state scholars have compiled tremendous and precious data in this field. They would… Continue Reading

How Do You Reconcile Beauty and Truth? by Barbara Steinberg

How Do You Reconcile Beauty and Truth? by Barbara Steinberg

In 1789, the French Revolution started a political pendulum that swung sharply between Republic and Empire. The 1848 Revolution installed a democratic republic, whose electorate put Prince Louis-Napolèon Bonaparte and his Imperialist party into power. Napolèon III adopted the earlier revolution-motto Liberté, égalité, fraternité, but in 1851, he staged a coup and proclaimed the Second French Empire.… Continue Reading

The Global City – A book launch at the Mayfair Gallery of Michael Backman. Review and comment by Sarah Corbett.

The Global City – A book launch at the Mayfair Gallery of Michael Backman. Review and comment by Sarah Corbett.

by Annemarie Jordan Gschwend  (Editor), K.J.P. Lowe (Editor) Publisher: Paul Holberton Publishing (December 19, 2015) ISBN-13: 978-1907372889 A bridge between the world of the historian and the world of the collector. A concept which seems obvious, a concept which requires ‘two way traffic’. As one whose awarenesses are deeply rooted within the realm of collectors and gatherers, I frequently dip into… Continue Reading

Review- Musee des Bijoux Nawahi, Marrakech 

Review- Musee des Bijoux Nawahi, Marrakech 

THIS MUSEUM IS NOW CLOSED Amongst the labyrinthine alleyways of the medina of Marrakech lies a small gem of a museum. This ancient riad has been renovated in a stylish and imaginative fashion to house a collection dedicated to the jewellery of North Africa. With an especially good Tuareg collection on the ground floor including… Continue Reading

Tibetan Ga’u By Leonor Arno

Tibetan Ga’u By Leonor Arno

The charm box pendant called the ga’u originated in Tibet. This sort of jewellery is in wide use throughout the western and eastern sub-Himalayan area by tribes who follow Buddhism and others who emulate them, though the local term used to designate it varies with the group. The origin of the charm container-pendant in Tibet… Continue Reading

Of Combs and Saints by Barbara Steinberg

Of Combs and Saints by Barbara Steinberg

It was a time before nations. Celtic tribes ruled Gaul until they were conquered by the Roman Empire (121 – 51 BC). In the early 5th Century, Roman Gaul was overwhelmed by the Visigoths, Burgundians, and Franks until 481, when Frankish King Childeric I defeated the Visigoths, and his son King Clovis I united all… Continue Reading

Khayamia

Khayamia

Khayamia is a rich and decorative appliqué textile. The intricate textile was historically used to adorn the interiors of Beautiful Egyptian tents called Suradeq. It is believed that the Khayamia trade dates back to 1250 – 1317 AD during the Mamluk rule of the region. In a street south of Bab Zuweila in Cairo, tent makers… Continue Reading

The untruths we learned from the art of the Victorian Celtic Revival.

The untruths we learned from the art of the Victorian Celtic Revival.

The Celts were a branch of the Indo -Europeans. Proto Celtic people from the Balkans came to Central Europe in 2500 BC The earliest major Celtic settlement was in Hallstatt, Austria. The name Celt is derived from the Greek word Keltoi, meaning Barbarian. Those referred to by this name were not of one culture, but… Continue Reading

Bizzari Jewel Design

Bizzari Jewel Design

Jewelry seems quite uncomplicated. It’s a shiny piece that you wear around your neck, wrist or fingers, or even dangle from your ears. It’s pretty simple and it delights you. But when the same precious gemstones and metals are used in making jewelry across cultures, jewelry becomes a cross-cultural dialog of unexpected pleasures. Jewelry designers… Continue Reading

#Jezwecan and the adornment of Unity- by Sarah Corbett

#Jezwecan and the adornment of Unity- by Sarah Corbett

Jewellery has been used as a tool of communication throughout history. Jewellery has the ability to convey a message to others. During certain points in history jewellery became a clear and definite statement of a political movement. In the Uk in 1903 Emmeline Pankhurst founded the Women’s Social and Political Union, she developed a new… Continue Reading

Hanbok

Hanbok

The Hanbok is traditionally worn by Korean people. It was worn on a daily basis until around 100 years ago. The earliest evidence of this style of dress is found in the Koguya tombs, which are the only surviving remains of the Koguryo kingdom, which existed between the 3rd century BC and 7th century AD. The… Continue Reading

Carnelians of Gujerat by Sarah Corbett

Carnelians of Gujerat by Sarah Corbett

Carnelian has been greatly prized by many cultures. It has been a very desirable element of jewellery and adornment throughout history. Each piece of Carnelian is unique. Many cultures have attributed metaphysical properties to pieces of carnelian. It is believed by many that these semi precious stones can enhance life and help to cure many… Continue Reading

Art and Risk in Ancient Yoruba, c. 1300 AD, by Prof. Suzanne Preston Blier, Harvard University – Review by Barbara Steinberg

Art and Risk in Ancient Yoruba, c. 1300 AD, by Prof. Suzanne Preston Blier, Harvard University – Review by Barbara Steinberg

Suzanne Preston Blier is our guide and intellectual archaeologist, unearthing the relationship between Yoruba history and art in Ife, Southwestern Nigeria. She meticulously describes how much risk people took to create some of the most beautiful copper-cast and terracotta statues ever made. The statues preserve Yoruba identity and serve as both witnesses to history and… Continue Reading

Stefania Lucchetta

Stefania Lucchetta

Stefania Lucchetta was born and lives in Bassano del Grappa (Vicenza area), Italy. She holds degrees from Ca’ Foscari University in Venice (1999, BA with honors in Literature and Art History) and Scuola Italiana Design of Padua (2004, Master degree in Industrial Design), besides some modules previously taken at the Venice College of Fine Arts.… Continue Reading

Symbolists by Barbara Anne Steinberg

Symbolists by Barbara Anne Steinberg

Art Nouveau’s main ingredients were the Symbolists, who believed that art should reflect the truth indirectly as if in a dream; the flat perspective and strong colors of Japanese wood block prints; and Japanese organic forms and representations of nature. Out came the curvilinear forms of Art Nouveau, which lasted only 20 years (1890-1910). In… Continue Reading

Slovak folk blue cloth by Sarah Corbett.

Slovak folk blue cloth by Sarah Corbett.

Blue (indigo) printing was a flourishing art form in Slovakia 50 years ago; 5 years ago the last remaining traditional artisan (Stanislav Tmka) in this ancient technique passed away aged 75. During the 1950’s there were many artisan dyers working with indigo blue pigments and using hand printing processes to create cloth for elements of… Continue Reading

Will Evans – Designer

Will Evans – Designer

Will Evans started his jewellery career as an apprentice to a master-blacksmith and has since progressed to making highly sophisticated stylish jewellery incorporating fine gold inlay. Much of his work has a linear feel to it and his distinctive use of gold inlay helps to define or even defy the form of the pieces, blurring… Continue Reading

Taikomochi of Japan

Taikomochi of Japan

The original Geisha of Japan were called Taikomochi or Hokan. They were men. The word Hokan means a jester, and the word Taikomochi means drum beater. The Taikomochi were jesters, musicians, singers and story tellers. They entertained their feudal lords in 13th Century Japan. Taikomochi were connoisseurs of the Arts and masters of the tea… Continue Reading

Whang Od – Last Batok artist of Kalinga.

Whang Od –  Last Batok artist of Kalinga.

In a small village called Buscalan in Kalinga, The Philippines A woman called Whang Od is possibly the last of her kind. At a sprightly 97 years of age she is keeping alive the traditions of her ancestors, the tradition is called “Batok” and is the art of tattooing. Tattooing has been practised in the… Continue Reading

Christina Zani – Designer

Christina Zani – Designer

Underpinned by my fascination with literature, semiotics, travel, architecture, colours, textures and materials, my work is the tangible testimonial of my journey through cities. Inspired by Italo Calvino’s Invisible Cities, my collection is a reflection on the urban environment and the concept of invisibility. One series – My Seoul – is inspired by the contrasting… Continue Reading

Daniella Dobesova – Designer

Daniella Dobesova – Designer

Daniela trained at The College of Art and Design in her home city of Prague, later continuing her studies in Jewellery Design at Richmond College of Art in London, where after graduation in 2003 she became an artist in residence. Whilst at Richmond her designs started to gain a reputation for innovation & originality in… Continue Reading

Ciara Bowles – Designer

Ciara Bowles – Designer

Ciara Bowles Contemporary Jewellery was started by Ciara herself in 2013. Based in East London, she creates bold, colourful statement jewellery that is influenced by her love of pattern, colour and natural form. This is her first seasonal collection, which has been influenced by the experience she has gained working for jewellers and fashion houses… Continue Reading

Desmond Chan – Designer

Desmond Chan – Designer

I enjoy making jewellery; in 2013 when I couldn’t find a special Christmas present for my wife I decided to use my 3D modeling skill to build a star shape pendant and used 3D print technology to make it in sterling silver. That was my first jewellery design and she enjoys wearing it. My concept is… Continue Reading

Stanley Hill, Sr., and Seneca Iroquois Combs by Kajetan Fiedorowicz

Many contemporary tribal artists reach to their nations’ historical sources for inspiration, which provides for a certain continuation of tradition. However, they do not always admit that reference. This makes the process of “joining stylistic dots” much harder, but not impossible. The comb presented below, carved c. 1977 by Stanley Hill, Sr., (Mohawk Clan) is… Continue Reading

Part of our More series

Sadhvi

Sadhvi

Around 10% of Sadhus are women, they are called Sadhvis, most women become Sadhvi following the death of their husband, so young Sadhvi are rarely seen. A Sadhvi is a Hindu holy woman, she is dedicated to achieving Moska (liberation) through meditating and contemplating Brahman. Sadhbi in sanscrit means a woman who renounces material attatchments,… Continue Reading

Mariko Samioka – Designer

Mariko Samioka – Designer

I feel awe and respect for natural and man-made objectswhich have been there and lived since ancient times. This idea is deeply rooted in my origin: Japanese culture and environments.The Japanese respect, understand and accept nature as one of their members. I am fascinated by Japanese traditional architecture,which is an essential part of human lives… Continue Reading

Kelly Munro – Designer

Kelly Munro – Designer

My inspiration is drawn from my heritage and homeland. I was born in a small town in the far north coast of Scotland, well known for its historical fishing industry. I am surrounded by small abandoned ports around the coast, and have had a particular interest in fishing equipment used in the past and present.… Continue Reading

Megan Adair – Designer

Megan Adair – Designer

Photography and photomontage play a key role in my influences as a jewellery artist. Inspired by the surrealist artists of the early 20th century, I aim to capture a similar play between reality and illusion. Photographing the cityscapes that surround me, my intention is to evoke a sense of the city, which is at times… Continue Reading

Ineke Hemmiga and the Tuareg – Blue men of the Sahara

Ineke Hemmiga and the Tuareg – Blue men of the Sahara

Rarely do people evolve their identity and live the connection between Europe and Africa. Ineke Hemminga, a Dutch national has lived and worked with the Tuareg in Mali. Adopted by the Inaden, the artisan-silversmith caste of the Tuareg, Ineke travelled the Sahara , fascinated by theTuaregs’ nomadic lifestyle threatened on all sides by extinction against the collateral damage… Continue Reading

A Mangbetu Ivory Hair Pin by Barbara Steinberg‏

A Mangbetu Ivory Hair Pin by Barbara Steinberg‏

On 10 December 2014, Sotheby’s Paris held an auction of African and Oceanic Art consisting of 105 exquisite lots. The inspirational connection between Modernism and African art was forged when European colonists brought back sculptures, masks, reliquary objects, furniture, and hair ornaments from the cultures they had enslaved, murdered, and misrepresented as primitive. Picasso continually… Continue Reading

Catacomb Saints

Catacomb Saints

Between the 16th and 19th century, by order of the Vatican thousands of ancient Roman corpses were exhumed from the catacombs of Rome.These skeletal remains were given fictitious names and were sent abroad as relics of saints. Although it is unlikely that any of the corpses were of religious significance, the remains were decorated, bejewelled… Continue Reading

Zaouli

Zaouli

Zaouli is a mask of the Dje LaLou. The Gouro ethnic group from Manfla in the Cote d’Ivoire, West Africa, uses it in a traditional mask dance drumming ceremony.  LaLou Zaouli was a goddess for the Gouro people and the words ‘Djela Lon Zaouli’ mean ‘The Lions daughter’. The Zaouli dance is a seductive dance,… Continue Reading

Josephine Nirmala Designer

Josephine Nirmala Designer

Having lived in Kenya for most of my formative years I had always been surrounded by beaded jewellery. My mother had her own collection of beaded necklaces in every colour of the rainbow, right from malachite & tigers eye to obsidian & coral. As a child, these colourful beads were no more than just colourful… Continue Reading

Nose Rings in Pre-Columbian Civilizations By Barbara Steinberg

Nose Rings in Pre-Columbian Civilizations  By Barbara Steinberg

Civilizations are finite. Time, climate change, conquerors, and assimilation transform peoples.  Blood mixes. Ideas meld. The center cannot hold.  Beginning around 900 BC, many cultures thrived on the central-western coasts of Peru, Ecuador, and Colombia before the rise of the Inca Empire in the 13th Century, and Francisco Pizarro’s first victory of the Spanish Conquest at… Continue Reading

Yoruba Textile – Lightning Strike by Duncan Clarke

Yoruba Textile –  Lightning Strike by Duncan Clarke

Why might a rich Yoruba lady living in southern Nigeria over a century ago choose to have zigzags embroidered on her expensive wrapper cloth? This is a unique piece with no similar examples known and no ethnographic context to explain it, so we can only speculate based on our knowledge of Nigerian textile history and… Continue Reading

Rachel Boston – Designer

Rachel Boston – Designer

RACHEL BOSTON IS A LONDON BORN AND BASED JEWELLERY DESIGNER AND MAKER. Boston graduated in Jewellery Design from Central Saint Martin’s College of Art and Design and continued to study at the Gemological Institute of America in New York where she received her diploma in Diamond Grading. Her signature aesthetic of pure and strong forms… Continue Reading

Maasai

Maasai

  The Maasai people live nomadically in southern Kenya and northern Tanzania, also known as the great lakes region. The origins of the Maasai people has been traced back to the 15th century in the lower Nile valley. The Maasai worship a single deity called Enkai or Engai; Enkai has two personas, Enkai Narok (… Continue Reading

Whitby Jet

Whitby Jet

Jet is a minor gemstone which is derived from wood which has been subject to high pressure over millions of years. It is along with Amber one of two organic gem fossils. Jet has been utilised in adornment since neolithic times. The earliest known object is a carving of a damsel fly larva originating in… Continue Reading

Zuni

Zuni

The Zuni people of the American South west are a peaceful people, whose lives and beliefs are closely tied to the mountains, deserts and forests of their sacred homelands. They speak a distinctly different language to other groups share, and which has maintained it’s integrity for over 7000 years. The Zuni make a religious pilgrimage… Continue Reading

Isabel Dammermann

Isabel Dammermann

The effect materials can have fascinates me. There is beauty in the ambivalence of heaviness and lightness and the relationship between permanence and fragility. On this occasion, I require the materials to educe a special atmosphere, a sentiment. This happens through spontaneity and intuition. The urge for a harmonious balance culminates in the form of… Continue Reading

Helping others through the art of Adornment

Helping others through the art of Adornment

  Kadambari Jewels. – “ If you want to own something nobody else will have …” Kadambari is the creative expression of Rashantha Devanesan who has been designing and crafting Kadambari jewels since 2008. Kadambari’s collections reflect the rich heritage of the Silk Road and Asia, combining genuine antique pendants and beads with semi-precious and… Continue Reading

Plumes by The Creative Museum

Plumes by The Creative Museum

In our second collaboration with the Museum of African and Asian Arts in Vichy, The Creative Museum was invited to participate in the exhibition, PLUMES. Five civilizations were featured to show how their art forms reflected each culture’s specific reverence for one emblematic bird. Through their freedom of flight, birds connected gods and man and… Continue Reading

Bindi

Bindi

  Traditionally worn in India a bindi is a decoration of the forehead, usually a red dot, although other colours and jewelled versions are also used. The bindi is mentioned in the earliest Sanskrit text. Traditional Application is with the finger tip using vermilion powder, however a circular stencil and sticky wax paste is often… Continue Reading

The Kiani Crown

The Kiani Crown

  This opulent and splendid crown was worn for coronations in Iran during the Qajar dynasty (1796 – 1925) The Kayanian are a dynasty of Iranian legend, the Kayanian kings are the heroes of Avesta, the sacred writings of Zoroastrianism. The Kiani crown is a physical manifestation of the belief in the divine royal glory.… Continue Reading

Nicole Schuster

Nicole Schuster

Nicole Schuster works about the relation of nature and architecture, as an opposite, as an addition, as a process. Even the pieces titles refer to the influences from architecture and nature, growth and change. They sound like a survey through imaginary cities. Others point to poetic places, which you can imagine as a scenery for… Continue Reading

Anna Ward – Designer

Anna Ward – Designer

 Unitec Bachelor of Design graduate Anna Ward takes traditional beauty accoutrements – false nails and false eyelashes – and turns them into textural neckwear that trick the eye into seeing feathers or tassels. Ward’s jewellery has a glamorous look and is more evening wear than day wear. She is inspired by the possibility of evening… Continue Reading

Odd designs – Hair combs

Odd designs – Hair combs

Combs ornament the hair and reveal true beauty in a woman’s face. Its greatest creators borrowed motifs from nature, such as flowers, insects, and birds. Art Nouveau’s roots lived underneath those flowers. Natural themes were combined with French Symbolist ideals, which posited that artists should reveal the truth indirectly, using suggestive metaphors. Lalique’s orchid combs… Continue Reading

Aggrab Al Fadda Beads by Sarah Corbett

Aggrab Al Fadda Beads by Sarah Corbett

  Sometimes in the world of bead collecting a style of bead comes to the foreground in terms of interest and desirability. In recent years the Aggrab Al fadda bead has been that specimen. This silver hollow bead is from Mauritania. The term Aggrab means bag, Al Fadda denotes a bag made from the body… Continue Reading

Charles Loloma Designer

Charles Loloma Designer

What does an innovator do when his soul, land, and religion belong to a race who survived genocide? How does an artist feel when his genius compels him to consider all cultural ideas equally, even those of the countries responsible for the genocide? Early in his career, Charles Loloma realized that many traditional Native American… Continue Reading

The Frances Wright Collection

The Frances Wright Collection

Many women practice their art secretly. Emily Dickinson had fewer than 12 poems published in her lifetime until her sister Lavinia discovered 1800 of them in a locked chest after she died. Jane Austen was first published anonymously. Collecting is also an art. To do it well, you must have an encyclopedic knowledge of the… Continue Reading

A Tribal Rite of Spring in Paris by Barbara Ann Steinberg

A Tribal Rite of Spring in Paris by Barbara Ann Steinberg

In the early 20th Century, European artists stripped antiquities and African tribal art of their religious significance. The pieces, with bold, minimalist shapes and lines, influenced Modernism and Cubism in design, only, as artists explored the relationship between humanity and the Industrial Revolution. Diaghilev’s Ballet Russes was acclaimed for bringing modern dance to Parisian audiences… Continue Reading

Bound Earth by Andrea Williams

Bound Earth by Andrea Williams

  Andrea Williams is an independent fine art jewelry designer living in New England. She is an accomplished metalsmith who specializes in contemporary, eco-conscious, nature inspired jewelry. Andrea created Bound Earth out of her belief that jewelry should not be worn as a status symbol, but should instead bring us closer to the earth that… Continue Reading

Kirsty Fraser

Kirsty Fraser

 Fraser draws her inspiration for her designs from architectural forms, she has a fascination with geometric and angular shape formations, patterns and repetitive sequences. The outcome of this fascination with architectural form and geometry? Simplistic beautiful looking pieces. Each piece that is designed and created by Fraser has very strong geometric features creating rigid structural looking jewellery. The combination of textures, polished metals and… Continue Reading

Melanie Eddy

Melanie Eddy

From her London studio Melanie combines traditional approaches with new applications, creating sculptural jewellery that uses geometry as a tool to explore the relationship of form to the body. An independent jewellery designer/maker with an individual style of jewellery handmade in precious metals to a very high standard she specialises in a bespoke service. Melanie… Continue Reading

Liz Hamman

Liz Hamman

Cheshire based mixed media artist Liz Hamman create’s fantastic handmade jewellery from reclaimed materials. Hamman’s jewellery has been exhibited nationally and internationally. Much of the paper used to create the jewellery comes from reclaimed or second hand books, maps among other paper materials. ‘Paper is an amazing material and can be manipulated in many ways.… Continue Reading

Kara and Kirpan

Kara and Kirpan

  In 1699 Guru Gobind Singh, the 10th Guru of Sikhism, created the Khalsa Panth at Anandpur Sahib. This occasion transformed Sikhs into a family of soldier saints. During the transformative festival Guru Gobind Singh came out of a tent holding a sword, and challenged any Sikh who was prepared to give his life to… Continue Reading

What is America to me? By Carving Cat

What is America to me? By Carving Cat

Nine thousand years removed From the scenes my ancestors loved, Blue-foam beach, abalone shell What is America to me? For the early part of my life, “race” defined quite a lot of the boundaries of my world. When you grew up poor AND brown, for some people in the United States (US), it was a… Continue Reading

JOSEP TAPIRÓ, Spanish Orientalist (1836-1913) by Leonor Arnó Pons

JOSEP TAPIRÓ, Spanish Orientalist  (1836-1913) by Leonor Arnó Pons

A new exhibition, at the Museu Nacional de Catalunya (Barcelona) is setting out to restore the figure of Josep Tapiró to its rightful place as one of the leading representatives of international Orientalism. Josep Tapiró i Baró (Reus 1836-1913), the first painter from the Iberian Peninsula to settle in Tangier, was a direct witness of the extraordinary urban and… Continue Reading

Auguste Bonaz in the Machine by The Creative Museum

Auguste Bonaz in the Machine by The Creative Museum

The Industrial Revolution was built on the invention of new materials. Machines allowed them to be mass produced into cheap products, quickly. The exploitation of sweatshop laborers had a profound impact on society. Plastic comb making was no exception. In America, the most famous factory was in Leominster, Massachusetts. In France, combs were made in… Continue Reading

Abrasha

Abrasha

I attended the “Goldschmiedeschule” (School for Goldsmithing) in Pforzheim, West-Germany. After two years of study there and a one year apprenticeship with a commercial firm, I took a state exam which certified me as a goldsmith. After that I worked and studied with Professor Klaus Ullrich, one of Germany’s leading jewelry artists, for one year.… Continue Reading

Stephanie Hamer

Stephanie Hamer

Stephanie is an emerging contemporary jewellery artist, based in Manchester. Working mainly in plastics, and exploring the use of colour, shape and pattern, she strives to create jewellery that is striking, modern and fun.  After gaining a distinction in FdA Jewellery & Applied Arts at Manchester Metropolitan University in 2011, Stephanie has developed her work into a… Continue Reading

Naxi People – China

Naxi People – China

The Naxi people live in Yunnan province China. They migrated to the region from the yellow river area to south China in 770 – 221 BC and settled in the areas near to the Yalong and Jinsha rivers before 221 – 201 BC. The Naxi peoples have their own written language called ‘Dongba characters’. They… Continue Reading

Natalia Shabelsky

Natalia Shabelsky

Natalia Shabelsky (1841- 1905) was a lady with a true passion. This Russian noblewoman devoted her life to the conservation of endangered folk art traditions. Natalia travelled throughout Russia collecting fine textiles and eventually created a Museum in her Moscow home. A collection which housed over 4000 pieces. It was the largest collection of late… Continue Reading

Lisa Juen

Lisa Juen

Born in 1983 and raised in South-West Germany, I took the first opportunity offered to me to travel and see the world. After having stayed with a goldsmith in Zweibruecken for one year in 2002, I began to take up my studies at the Fachhochschule Trier, Fachbereich Edelstein- & Schmuckdesign in Idar-Obertein, Germany in 2003.… Continue Reading

Stanley Hill, Sr., and Seneca Iroquois Combs by Kajetan Fiedorowicz

Stanley Hill, Sr., and Seneca Iroquois Combs by Kajetan Fiedorowicz

Many contemporary tribal artists reach to their nations’ historical sources for inspiration, which provides for a certain continuation of tradition. However, they do not always admit that reference. This makes the process of “joining stylistic dots” much harder, but not impossible. The comb presented below, carved c. 1977 by Stanley Hill, Sr., (Mohawk Clan) is… Continue Reading

The Snettisham Hoard.

The Snettisham Hoard.

  The Snettisham hoard dates from the Iron Age circa 75BCE and was discovered in Snettisham in Norfolk. UK , by metal detcetorist Charles Hodder. In all 9 kilos of gold and silver were discovered including 70 complete torcs. Some pieces had been discovered in Snettisham between 1948 and 1973, however the discovery in 1990… Continue Reading

Etruscan Jewellery.

Etruscan Jewellery.

  The Etruscan people were a sophisticated, luxury loving people who lived in Northern Italy 800 – 400 BC. They were astute traders, and had great wealth. Wealthy Etruscans built them selves dwellings for the afterlife. These dwellings were very similar to those which they had inhabited in life.Whole villages and towns of these tombs… Continue Reading

Snail Bracelet by Vivienne Westwood

Snail Bracelet by Vivienne Westwood

Delving into Vivienne Westwood’s jewellery archive, this Spring/Summer 2014 the Snail collection makes a return from the Spring/Summer 2002 Nymphs collection. Quintessentially English, the Snail Bracelet, delicately produced from a real snail shell, beautifully creates the suggestion of back gardens after the summer rain. Continue Reading

Kelvin J. Birk

Kelvin J. Birk

Accomplished jeweller, Kelvin J. Birk has developed an intriguing collection of work where valuable gemstones are ruthlessly crushed and then reconstructed to create dynamic jewellery and objects. Following personal life experiences Kelvin comments “There is always destruction and loss but out of that come new things and a new order.”Consciously disregarding what is traditionally considered… Continue Reading

Anthony Rousell

Anthony Rousell

Award winning Artist and Designer, Anthony Roussel creates beautiful intricate sculptural jewellery inspired by the epic sweep of the British coastline and a passion for modern architecture. Roussel applies delicate flowing lines and sweeping curves, meticulously layering sheets of wood into sinuous forms. His fascination with the repetitive linear patterns found within geological rock formations… Continue Reading

Scarification in Africa.

Scarification in Africa.

Scarification is a permanent form of adornment which has been practised throughout history. Evidence from Saharan rock paintings suggest it’s use in 8000 – 5000 BC. By cutting the skin and manipulating the healing process or by branding, intricate designs can be created. Scarification in an indigenous context is mostly practised in Africa and Australia.… Continue Reading

Jill Hermans

Jill Hermans

Based in Melbourne, Jill is interested in the ways desire has inspired humans, driven them to create and motivated them to adorn. Having completed a Bachelor of Fine Arts (Metals and Jewellery) at Monash University, she examines how the quality of colour and sensation of tactility dictates our desire and attraction in relation to jewellery.… Continue Reading

Tiffany Rowe

Tiffany Rowe

Tiffany Rowe describes herself as a slightly eccentric British-Swiss jewellery designer who lives and works in the beautiful city of Geneva. Attracted to the world of contemporary art, photography and fashion, she creates one-off pieces using materials  bought locally during her travels. She likes to experiment with different textures and incorporate objects that are not… Continue Reading

Neissing

Neissing

For 140 years, people have been conceiving, creating, and producing jewelry at Niessing in Vreden. Niessing was originally founded as a workshop for devotional objects, with wedding rings also being produced beside ecclesiastical ornaments. Today, Niessing is one of the top manufacturers of premium, contemporary German jewellery design. 1873 Hermann Niessing starts a jewellery factory… Continue Reading

Nath

Nath

A nath is a piece of jewellery used in India which is worn through a piercing in the nose. Nath are worn extensively by Indian women, however the tradition is likely to have originated in the Middle East, it is likely that the Mughuls brought the nath to India. The nath is worn in a… Continue Reading

Mud cloth Bogolan

Mud cloth Bogolan

Mud cloth is a type of fabric which is made by the Bamana peoples of Mali in West Africa. The cotton fabric is woven in strips by men and is subsequently dyed by the women using an iron rich clay slip which is collected from riverbeds and fermented. Jars of Bogolan (fermented slip) are stored… Continue Reading

Capturing the characters of Morocco

Capturing the characters of Morocco

Leila Alaouis a French Moroccan Artist, her latest exhibition is a tribute to the rich ethnic and tribal identity of her native country. Her travels through the towns villages and cities of Morocco have been accompanied by her pop up photography studio, where she has created stunning portraits of those she has encountered in her… Continue Reading

The Gold Crowns of Mycenae, Bactria, and Silla By Barbara Steinberg

The Gold Crowns of Mycenae, Bactria, and Silla By Barbara Steinberg

According to archeological finds by Heinrich Schliemann, an elliptical gold diadem with removable crown-ornaments was first discovered in a Mycenaean funerary mound called Grave Circle A, or the “Grave of Women”, c. 1600-1500 BC. The Mycenaeans were an Indo-European people who settled in Southern Greece along the Agean Sea in the Bronze Age (1600-1100 BC). They came… Continue Reading

Asrou n swoul.

Asrou n swoul.

The attire of a Tuareg woman of the African Sahara consists of a large rectangular piece of fabric. The fabric, also known as Mellhafa is held in place in the billowing winds of the Sahara by a very particular and unique piece of jewellery. The Asrou n swoul, meaning the key which will be thrown… Continue Reading

Henna History

Henna History

Henna (Lawsonia inermis, also known as hina, the henna tree, the mignonette tree, and the Egyptian privet) is a flowering plant and the sole species of the Lawsonia genus. The English name “henna” comes from the Arabic loosely pronounced as ħinna. The name henna also refers to the dye prepared from the plant and the art of temporary tattooing based on those dyes. Henna has been used since antiquity to dye skin, hair,… Continue Reading

BERBER WOMEN OF MOROCCO by Leonor Arno Pons

BERBER WOMEN OF MOROCCO by Leonor Arno Pons

I’ve visited this week this magnificent exhibition in the Yves Saint-Laurent Foundation located in Paris, not far from the Quai Branly Museum. The quality of the jewels exhibited is amazing, items which are impossible to see on the market anymore. A big part of them are from the own collection of Yves Saint Laurent and… Continue Reading

Belarusian Ruchnik

Belarusian Ruchnik

A ruchnik is a traditional ornamental towel. This towel is a piece of textile which embodies many significant concepts within Belarusian life. In fact the ruchnik are a highly important part of the national culture. The designs of the ruchnik are a mixture of art and symbolism and are seen as representations of the threads… Continue Reading

Puabi: Queen of Ur

Puabi: Queen of Ur

During the first dynasty of Ur (Ca 2600 BCE) a women priestess or queen lived. Ur was an important Sumerian city-state, which is located in Mesopotamia which is present day Iraq. Puabi is sometimes called Shubad, however this translation from the Akkadiam language was later found to be incorrect. Her tomb was discovered by Leonard… Continue Reading

Designer – Angela Lovett

Designer – Angela Lovett

A little girl walks into a classroom, sits down at her desk and opens her first geography book. The pages become doors. She walks through and enchantment sets in. Morocco, Istanbul, Arabia, Africa, the Mediterranean – gleaming, sparkling, beckoning – they transport the little girl from her world of primary colors into shades of the… Continue Reading

Guedra by Sarah Corbett

Guedra by Sarah Corbett

The word Guedra represents several aspects of a form of dance which is particular to Southern Morocco, Mauritania and Algeria. The primary meaning is cooking pot, when this pot is covered with a stretched leather skin to create a drum, the drum is also known as Guedra. When the drummer plays a beat representing a… Continue Reading

Auction of Judaica By Barbara Steinberg

Auction of Judaica   By Barbara Steinberg

On March 12, 2014, Kestenbaum & Company held an auction of fine Judaica. The results are not in yet. Highlights include a manuscript page from Flavius Josephus’s “De Antiquitate Judaica.” It was translated by Rufinus Aquileiensis in October of 1499. Est: $4000 – $6000. There are two ketubas, or marriage contracts: The first was written… Continue Reading

Asyk By Sarah Corbett

Asyk By Sarah Corbett

The Asyk Worn by the Turkoman peoples of Central Asia, the asyk is an imposing adornment which is suspended from the hair by use of plaits as a back ornament. There are many sizes and decorative styles, all of them incorporate a symbol which to the Western eye is a heart, although it is more… Continue Reading

PRAYER BEADS by Leonor Arnó

PRAYER BEADS by Leonor Arnó

In western cultures we may associate prayer beads to Christianity and Middle Ages. In fact their use is universal and pre-dates the Christian Era. Even today the religions of nearly two thirds of the world’s population utilize some form of prayer beads: Muslims, Buddhists and Christians. The use of prayer beads came from the early… Continue Reading

The Lingam Necklace

The Lingam Necklace

A Lingam necklace is a silver casket worn to contain a piece of smooth oval stone called a Lingum. The Lingam ( Ishtalinga) stone is a natural river worn stone primarily of Jasper found in the Narmada river ( a tributary of the Ganges River) in India. The lingam stone represents the God Shiva. In… Continue Reading

Ashanti Gold by Sarah Corbett

Ashanti Gold by Sarah Corbett

The great kingdom of Ashanti was built upon the golden riches which lay beneath it’s soil. The Ashanti Kingdoms began to develop in the mid 16th century, and by the 17th century Ashanti was becoming established as an expanding power and by the middle of the 19th century Ashanti controlled most of the area which… Continue Reading

Lady Sainsbury

Lady Sainsbury

The Sainsbury Institute is saddened to announce the death of its benefactor Lady Lisa Sainsbury.   Lady Sainsbury died on 6th February aged 101. It was her vision, and that of her husband Sir Robert, who died in 2000, that led to the establishment of the Sainsbury Institute for the Study of Japanese Arts and… Continue Reading

Mamuli by Sarah Corbett

Mamuli by Sarah Corbett

  The Mamuli hails from the island of Sumba in Eastern Indonesia, and is considered to be the most important of their golden ritual gift items. Originally worn by women and also sometimes by men in artificially elongated ear lobes. Mamuli are a fertility amulet and a part of the exchange of gifts prior to… Continue Reading

Paris Auction of Ethnic Jewellery 12th Feb 2014

Paris Auction of Ethnic Jewellery 12th Feb 2014

  Leaving the UK at 4.45 am in the middle of a serious weather event to catch a train going under the sea and all of the storms and floods may have seemed more surreal were I not so sleep deprived! The Eurostar seat was beckoning as a great place for a much needed sleep… Continue Reading

Religion, War, Trade, and Art Nouveau By Barbara Steinberg

Religion, War, Trade, and Art Nouveau By Barbara Steinberg

Where should my pencil begin to trace the historical connections that led to French Art Nouveau jewelry? The Sixteenth Century, perhaps? At that time, Popes countered the Protestant Reformation by sending Jesuit missionaries to far-off lands. The missions converted non-European peoples, so Catholic monarchs could then step in, colonize new territory, and bolster the political… Continue Reading

Ivory

Ivory

  Ivory is a material which is historically used widely in adornment. Ivory is the tusk or tooth of an animal, including : the elephant, the walrus, the boar, the hippopotamus, the sperm whale, the narwhal and the crocodile. Ivory can be identified as it carries a distinct striation pattern called Schreger lines. The formation… Continue Reading

Enamelling as a guide to date

Enamelling as a guide to date

Enamelling is the technique of using molten glass to fill areas on metal jewellery between wires to create decorative coloured jewels. Add to the beautiful colours the belief that these beads were made by the gods and therefore would protect, the need to continue to use and wear damaged pieces of larger beads adds to the… Continue Reading

Trade Routes The Sahara – By Alaa Eddine Sagid

Trade Routes The Sahara – By Alaa Eddine Sagid

Since the first travel accounts of Morocco were made by Arab and European explorers during the Middle Ages the jewellery of North Africa has aroused great interest. A plethora of ethnologists, during the colonial era made journeys, during which they gathered many fine examples to create the exhibits of the European museums, notedly those museums… Continue Reading

The Fibula. By Sarah Corbett

The Fibula. By Sarah Corbett

  The fibula is an ancient form of brooch which is not only decorative, but also has a practical purpose as a fastener for clothing. The first fibula is seen in the late Bronze age. The style is known as the ‘Violin Bow Fibula’ and is the first recorded replacement for the straight pins which… Continue Reading

Bead Work from Oceania

Bead Work from Oceania

  AN EXAMPLE OF BEAD WORK FROM OCEANIA (C. 1920). BY TRUUS DAALDER When my husband Joost and I had reached the cut-off point for including items in my book Ethnic Jewellery and Adornment (Ethnic Art Press and Macmillan, 2009: see link www.ethnicartpress.com.au), our collecting habits did not change, and they still have not. Our… Continue Reading

Symbolism – The Frog. By Sarah Corbett

Symbolism – The Frog. By Sarah Corbett

The symbol of forces perpetuating life.   Karakalpak – A type of Tu’yme worn in Central Asia by the Karakalpak peoples is known as Qurbaqa meaning the frog.     Egypt – The frog was a symbol of life and fertility, millions of frogs were born each year after the inundation of the Nile, which… Continue Reading

The Himba – Namibia. By Sarah Corbett

The Himba – Namibia. By Sarah Corbett

  The Himba of Northern Namibia are and ancient tribe. These visually stunning people survive by herding cattle and goats. Their lifestyle has changed little since the 16th century, and they continue to dwell in small settlements, enduring droughts and surviving conflicts. Their existence is perpetuated through tribal structures in on of Earth’s most inhospitable… Continue Reading

Ohaguru – dental adornment. By Sarah Corbett

Ohaguru – dental adornment. By Sarah Corbett

The Ancient Japanese custom of blackening the teeth. It was popular in Japan until the Merji era (1868 – 1912) Early traces of the custom have been identified in burials from the Kofun period (250AD- 538AD).   The process involved coating the teeth with a solution which was prepared by dissolving iron filings in vinegar,… Continue Reading

Faouzi – Designer of Marrakech. By Sarah Corbett

Faouzi – Designer of Marrakech. By Sarah Corbett

Born in Marrakech, Faouzi is the son of a Hairdresser. He lives now as ever in the Ancient Medina of Marrakech. His working life began in the restoration of antique furnishings, his love of creative arts led him to study calligraphy. His beautifully illuminated work is highly desirable and collected in his home city and… Continue Reading

Rene Lalique. By Sarah Corbett

Rene Lalique. By Sarah Corbett

Art Nouveau was a movement in the visual arts which was popular from the early 1890’s up to the first world war. It is viewed by some as the first self conscious attempt to create a modern style. A leading name in the field of Art Nouveau design was glass designer Rene Lalique. Born in… Continue Reading

Collector – Toya Erickson

Collector – Toya Erickson

Khamsa – The Hand in North African Jewelry The khamsa, or hand, is a widely used symbol in North African jewelry. In design it can take the form of a realistic human hand with four fingers and a thumb, or it can take a stylized form which is more representational. Either way, the khamsa is… Continue Reading

Designer – Anna Holland

Designer –  Anna Holland

  Over the years, I have been drawn to the study of antique and ancient beads and artifacts.   The impetus and inspiration for my jewelry designs is fed by the fascinating history and stories behind these pieces of stone, shell, glass, and metal that are decades, centuries and, at times, millennia old. My unique… Continue Reading

What is Amber? By Sarah Corbett

What is Amber? By Sarah Corbett

Found all over the world, Amber is a fossilised tree resin. Not only prized for it’s obvious aesthetic properties, Amber has long been associated with magical power. Thus becoming favoured as a medium with which to create charms and amulets to protect the wearer from ‘bad’ spirits. Resin is present in trees , and protects… Continue Reading

Tanit – The original great goddess. By Sarah Corbett

Tanit – The original great goddess. By Sarah Corbett

Tanit –  Thinit – Tanis – Rat Tanit – Lady of Carthage – Lady of the Sanctuary – Tinit – Tank – The face of Ba’al – The heavenly Goddess – Tanith – The heavenly virgin. All are names to represent the original great goddess, an ancient and powerful force and symbol of fertility and… Continue Reading

Beads from Briare.

Beads from Briare.

  Jean Felix Batterposses was an entrepeueur, an inventor, a landowner a patriach and a businessman.   His impact on the development of the French town of Briare was huge. His factory produced beads and buttons in Briare from 1851 he had factories in other locations previously where he manufactured these wares. The Beads which… Continue Reading

Collector – Patti Deany

Collector – Patti Deany

I collect antique textiles, primarily Islamic, –embroidery, tapestry, weaving, quilting — as opposed to carpets which are not only more expensive but more susceptible to counterfeiting and false aging. These cloths were primarily made for home use as clothing, hangings, floor covers, table cloths, animal covers– Most are tribal but some, such as ikats, were… Continue Reading

Book review – Ethnic Jewellery and Adornment – by Truus Daalder

Book review – Ethnic Jewellery and Adornment – by Truus Daalder

Ethnic Jewellery and Adornment – by Truus Daalder Author: Truus Daalder  Photographs: Jeremy Daalder Editor: Joost Daalder ISBN: 978-1-921394-28-7  Published by Ethnic Art Press, Adelaide, 2009  and Macmillan, Melbourne, 2009 This impressive book records an eclectic collection of items used for adornment from Australia, Oceania, Asia and Africa. The book features 700 items, the majority of… Continue Reading

Chevron Beads. By Sarah Corbett

Chevron Beads. By Sarah Corbett

The first Chevron beads were made in Murano in Italy at the end of the 14th century. The beads, which are made from drawn glass cane constructed using specialist star shaped moulds are one of the most collectable and valuable beads available to us today. Chevron beads are constructed with consecutive layers of various coloured… Continue Reading

The Creative Museum

The Creative Museum

CREATIVE MUSEUM is a private collection remarkable for its quality, beauty and the rarity of its pieces. It specializes in everything to do with hair adornments. These items, usually very rarely studied or collected, are bursting with information of all kinds: ethnological, sociological, technological, artistic… CREATIVE MUSEUM: a totally virtual museum It brings together more… Continue Reading

Museum Review – The Quai Branly Paris

Museum Review – The Quai Branly Paris

Alaa Eddine Sagid Celebrated as the main cultural project of former French president Jacques Chirac, it eventually confirmed the prominent role claimed by Paris as the world capital for indigenous arts, cultures and civilizations from Africa, Asia, Oceania and the Americas. In fact one week earlier a local sale set a world record for any… Continue Reading

Silver Beads of Morocco. By Sarah Corbett

Silver Beads of Morocco. By Sarah Corbett

An Article by Sarah Corbett Many of the exquisite ensembles of North African jewellery include handmade silver beads. The Jewish silversmiths of Southern Morocco were famed for their exceptional workmanship. The Jewish Berber population lived in Morocco from around the 1st century AD when the Jewish peoples expanded from ancient territories in Modern day Libya… Continue Reading

Symbolism – Tihuna. By Sarah Corbett

Symbolism – Tihuna. By Sarah Corbett

The language of adornment The drive to adorn oneself is considered by some to be one of the most basic human drives, following closely the need to procreate and survive. The act of personal adornment is far from a simple exercise in beauty, and can communicate much about a person and their living environment. The… Continue Reading