first posted on the hand/eye blog.
credit where credit is due: i am deeply inspired by the work of jewelry designer tom binns. he has turned the world of costume jewelry upside down, or right-side-up if you ask me. he makes no qualms about the fact that he does not work with precious materials in the traditional sense of the word. his necklaces are tangles of chains , such as the ones you may find on the bottom of the less desirable jewelry drawer, large clusters of obviously fake pearls and crazy assemblages of multicolored rhinestone brooches. like him, i find traditional “real jewelry” boring and underwhelming. i love semi-precious and even downright humble materials. this is what brought me to the necklace pictured here. its components were found in the trash outside of an east village apartment building several years ago. the building housed a retirement center and whenever one of the residents passed away, most of their belongings ended up rather unceremoniously on the street. one night i found there & brought home a small box filled with crosses, rosary beads and medallions depicting various saints. i attached them all onto an existing necklace - this one from a flea I believe – and ended up with this piece. i used to think it was “bad juju”, using items someone else attached great emotional/religious significance to, and this for my own vanity. i think so no longer, though technically worthless, it is one of my most treasured possessions.