24 February 2011

Amber and Turquoise

At the 12th Annual Journey Home Powwow of 2010, we started incorporating demonstrations of native crafts.  Not only did I do demonstrations of how to do my feather painting, but how to do some simple sand painting.  Most of the participants were young children, which is wonderful...usually.  This was the first time I had done a demonstration in that kind of atmosphere, and I admit I was a bit unprepared.

The first day was hectic and stressful, so even while I enjoyed it, I had a tendency to want to throttle some small person into submission.  Branden was teaching how to carve soapstone across the way, and he was stressed out just as much as I was.  So after the first night, we met up with two friends who were also demonstrating and vending at the Powwow to relax.  We all kind of vented whatever we needed to and then just commenced working on our own crafts for the next day.

One of the ladies handed me a drop of amber, and said that she would carry it around with her when ever she was under such stress, and hopefully it would help me.  Being as the amber is also my name sake, I was super excited.  Amber is one of the few "stones" that are classified as coming from organic matter, same idea as jet.  It has a deep, warm feeling to it, almost like solidified sunshine on a warm autumn afternoon.  While I've heard people say it's for healing, I find it more to be a stone that is likely to balance things out the way the need to be rather than for healing per say, it's more like a pleasant side-effect.

So, I had the gorgeous piece of amber with a bead hole drilled through the center, and not a clue what to do with it.  I carried it around for a while before I got an image in my head of what I wanted to do with it.  I wanted to do a three strand necklace with turquoise and little amber chips!  Well...easier said than done.  All and all, this took about 6 months to make, if not a little bit longer.  The turquoise chips I found at one of the outlet stores in Nags Head, I purchased a few of them because they were 50% off at the time.  It was a good thing to, because they no longer carry them there.  I couldn't find amber chips for a decent price until I went online.  Fire Mountain Gems was having a sale on a few of their amber strands, so I grabbed a few of the grade and shade I wanted, along with a strand of coconut heishi.

It was well worth the wait though, it's one of my favorite pieces so far.  At least as far as jewelry is concerned.

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