Book Review: 500 Pendants & Lockets

From prehistory humans have used pendants as a form of personal expression, a practice that not only continues but flourishes as evidenced by this collection juried by the cofounders of San Francisco’s renowned Velvet da Vinci jewelry gallery. Exquisite color photography reveals a stunning array of techniques and designs that cover the spectrum from simple to elegant and everything in between.

Many of the pieces, like Elizabeth Ryan’s multilayered “Thoughts” or the “Pendant for Blossfeldt” by Jennaca Leigh Davies, push the boundaries of what makes a pendant as they are simply too large, heavy or awkward to be worn for any length of time. Despite this obvious drawback, these pieces are fascinating as they show what is possible in pendant design and execution.

In addition to typical materials like silver, gold, gemstones and pearls, there are several designs that make use of more atypical supplies such as fur, plastic, tea, putty, coffee beans and horse hair to name but a few. This collection should stimulate the imagination of would be jewelers while providing insight into how a few of the artists approach the design process. 

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