Dried flowers, porcelain jasper and an old postcard helped provide the inspiration for the pyrite and feldspar pieces above. The design of the necklace was adapted from a previous feldspar version in pale grey, this time with a simplified approach and the addition of tiny brass discs. The feldspar squares have the most beautiful marbled pattern, with spots of colour in pink and mint. I took a similar approach when creating the bracelet, pairing pyrite cubes with a simple, plain chain. The old postcard features a statue of King Arthur, a mythical king of the Britons in ancient times, wearing richly detailed armour.
Statue of King Arthur, Hofkirche, Innsbruck, designed by Albrecht Dürer and cast by Peter Vischer the Elder
While researching ancient armour, I became fascinated with the etched and embossed decorations, often depicting floral and geometric patterns, religious imagery or mythological references. Since embossing had a tendency to weaken the metal, etching proved to be the more popular choice for decorating armour in the late fifteenth to early sixteenth century. I found this piece especially inspiring, believed to have been made by order of Henry VIII, with elaborately etched and gilded steel. Too late for this collection, but I’d love to experiment with etched brass and gold leaf at some point in the future.
Credit: jewellery and photographs by The Vamoose
Research: The Metropolitan Museum of Art