witchwood- witching hour
the colour in the sky has long since faded and turned to velvety darkness allowing the stars to truly begin their show.
smoke wisps blow from the chimney in the cooled air of night as the moon reaches it's zenith and the witching hour is ushered in upon the witchwood.
the witch is tucked into her loft bedroom dreaming of new recipes for tea and cookies that the mice by the river might like. the moon is not full so she sleeps, and the herbs that need full moonlight tending are not in need of attention for another fortnight. she watches her calendar closely and listens to the creatures who bring news the wind has told them, she watches the stars and hears what they have to say and is grateful for all the sun has to offer, but for the time being, she rests.
this deep at night not many are stirring, and those that are are respectful of the peace they might disturb. the creatures of the witchwood are harmonious and besides, no one likes a cranky witch...
witching hour is a micromosaic piece set in the witchwood. these earrings on handmade sterling silver hooks are comfortable and easy to wear, featuring various blue and black smalti filati all arranged to create tiny vignettes.
this is a sterling silver piece with hand laid micromosaic.
the inlay is hand cut glass placed piece by piece to make this evening scene.
the earrings are 51mm from the top of the hook to the bottom of the inlaid portion.
micromosaic is an ancient art form. examples dating back to the byzantine era have been discovered intact with the same scale of tesserae that are used in modern examples.
micromosaic were especially popularised during the 17th and 18th century when young well-to-do europeans would embark on the grand tour. small works of art, usually depicting scenery or religious iconography were made as micromosaic and adorned everything from jewellery to snuff boxes to small decor like tables by secretive artisans in italy. glass families created the filati (the thin, delicate strands of enamel glass used in this craft, the word literally means thread in italian) using their secret formulas for colour to make unique combinations and shapes for their micromosaic artists.
even today the media for this craft are difficult to procure and the ancient method is prohibitive to learn due to the lack of educational materials. It is still a secret art, and a laborious one.
looking at each finished piece up close you can see the different tesserae, the name given to the individually placed pieces of glass. each tesserae is the broken end of a tiny piece of glass filati, placed on it's end into a specially blended clay. the tesserae need to be pushed right up against one another to form tension in the finished piece. once the clay dries out the raw ends of the filati are painstakingly, and gently, ground by hand to make a matte, flat surface. several diamond grits are used to make a smooth finish which is then covered in natural, local beeswax. the beeswax is scraped off and buffed.
due to the nature of hand made and hand pulled glass there are often imperfections in the filati, these are visible on the surface of all micromosaic works and add to the beauty of the handmade process.
micromosaic should never be worn to bed or in water.
the glass surface should be left as undisturbed as possible to ensure a long life to the wearer.
try to avoid dropping these pieces on hard surfaces.
micromosaic jewellery should not be submerged in silver dip or other sterling/precious metal cleaners.
a polishing cloth can be used on the metal parts but not on the glass surface. avoid the glass surface with rouge based cloths.
store your micromosaic sealed in the included plastic bag with the anti tarnish paper when they aren't being worn.