Friday, March 12, 2010

Elegant elephant

I found this ring on Friday. I thought it was a hairwork piece from afar, and although it is made of hair, it's not human hair. It's actually made from a single strand of elephant tail hair, braided and held with a gold crimp. I did some reading and also emailed Linda Marshall, the owner of Jewels of Yesteryear (who sold a similar ring a few years back) and found out that elephant hair was quite trendy in England in the 19th century, when India was a British colony and colonists sent exotic goods back home for upper-crust consumption. Elephant hair jewelry continues to be popular today and it's collection/export is heavily regulated. I don't think this piece is very old and I'm not quite sure what I think about it . . . I feel kind of guilty, actually. There is no denying it is beautiful, though. Yup - black and gold are nice together.

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