Desert Primitive Fossil Ivory Talisman Necklace + Handmade Fine Silver Yucca Pod Impression + Desert Colors Beaded Strand

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Desert Primitive Fossil Ivory Talisman Necklace + Handmade Fine Silver Yucca Pod Impression + Desert Colors Beaded Strand

285.00

Rich brown fragments of fossil ivory are suspended with a silver yucca pod amulet on a graduated strand of fine seed beads

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:: Outlands ::

:: This necklace contains fossil walrus ivory and is for sale within the United States only ::

Three gorgeous fragments of fossil ivory are gathered together here in a graceful sweep, as they swing from a sterling chatelaine bail.  I had initially intended these to be hung separately, staggered in height with their flat sides facing out.  I had drilled them and was finding the right gauge of sterling wire for the bail, so I just strung them on a piece to see if they would fit...and they looked so beautiful that I kept them that way.  This is how new designs often come to be, by chance.  

These pieces come from St. Lawrence Island, Alaska, where the native Yupik, who (unusually) own their island, dig them from old village middens scattered across the terrain.  These are mostly artifact fragments, pieces that have been used and reused again and again until at last they are buried and forgotten.   Centuries, even millennia, go by and the ivory develops a deep brown patina from its long burial in the permafrost.  Often pieces are tumbled to bring the rich colors out, as these have been.  The sale of the ancient ivory is a significant part of the Yupik economy where opportunities for income are limited.  

I found that a fine silver yucca pod amulet worked perfectly with the ivory.  This comes from a very different part of the world, White Sands National Monument in the Chihuahuan Desert of southern New Mexico.  White Sands is the largest gypsum dune field in the world and is a stunningly beautiful place.  On our last trip I brought along some raw silver precious metal clay (PMC), and this piece was impressed directly on a soaptree yucca pod I found far out in the dunes.  It was a very weathered pod with holes made by the yucca moths, who live in a symbiotic relationship with the plants.  The last photo is of me next to one of the soaptrees in that area...when I found the photo I was surprised to discover that I made that piece exactly one year ago today!  Back home the dried clay was kiln fired and finished with a rusty patina.  

The bail is hammered sterling wire, oxidized and extensively wrapped around itself.  The strand of beads it hangs from is a subtle arrangement of very small glass seed beads, punctuated by white brass beads, African copper, serpentine tubes, brass rings and Australian gaspeite nuggets.  The glass seeds are arranged in a subtle color shift from top to bottom that I really love.  Above the pendant is a stack of wrapped sterling wire, St. Lawrence Island fossil ivory, green rhyolite, and brass.  I used 49 strand beading wire to string the beads: flexible, yet strong.  

SIZE:  The pendant measures 4", or 102mm, in length.  The necklace with pendant measures 21 3/4", or 54.7cm, from the back of your neck to the end of the pendant when worn.

CARE:   Take care with this ancient ivory; it is tough, but don't handle the piece roughly.  To clean, rinse briefly in cool water and gently blot dry, or simply wipe very gently with a soft, damp cloth. 

PRESENTATION: Outlands will come to you beautifully giftwrapped.  See my shop policies below for details.

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HAVE A QUESTION? Click on the shop policies link below for more information.  Feel free to contact me if you don't see the answer there