Long Brown Silk Chain with Amber, Wood Deer & Silver
- I love amber for its for its colours, textures and shapes. This is a large chunk of natural, Baltic, golden amber. On one side, it is like melted butter. On the flip side, it is more opaque, with a cream seeping through the gold. It is good size, at 4.5 cm long, 3.5 cm wide and 16.8 mm deep.
- The Baltic region is home to the largest known deposit of amber. Amber dates from 44 million years ago. Amber is fossilized tree resin. It has been estimated that these Baltic forests created more than 100,000 tons of amber.
- Sitting on top of the amber is a deer with its legs bent inwards as it reclines, and its antlers thrown horizontally. Its eyes are inlaid horn. This is a signed, carved, boxwood ojime. At 2.5 cm long and 12.5 mm high, he was intended to be a toggle, in his original purpose. Ojime were carved, decorative toggles used by the Japanese to support their Inro, or a box-like purses for men. This is not an old piece. But it is made by a master carver in China, who I know.
- All the silver on this necklace is handmade and fair trade. It is created by the Karen hill tribes of Thailand. Each is like a mini piece of sculpture. The bottom bead is quite three dimensional and wonderful, at 14.8 mm x 11mm. Above it is an etched bead at 6.8 mm. The top bead is made of woven silver, like a cone, at 12.5 mm x 10.5mm.
- Karen hill tribe Fair Trade silver is nearly 98% pure silver. I mostly choose to use their silver because they are individually crafted and created. I know that artisans in Northern Thailand produce this unique silversmithing in small villages, involving whole families in the process.
- All the elements hang on a handmade coffee silk/polyester chain, and on one of the rings, hangs my silver name label.
- The necklace comes, like all my necklaces, with its own colour co-ordinated silk brocaded pouch bag, made by a Shanghai tailor.
- Length 45 cm (17 3/4").