Lately another item has me in 'acquisition mode'. They are Japanese reverse-carved glass jewelry. Most of them are clear, or, my favorite- bluish transparent glass. Rarely you can also find red or black, but these are my faves probably because they remind me of opal or moonstone. They have a mysterious aura to them, too....
They come in different forms- bracelet, earrings, rings, cufflinks, tie bars, pendants. But what they have in common are the color of the glass, and the time period they come from- early to mid 20th century. They were essentially tourist trinkets, and many came with holes drilled for earrings or hanging pendants. I try to buy the ones without holes. They are not too expensive, although some sellers try to get away with charging more than anyone would pay. I've paid anywhere from $10-$25 a piece.
Most are reverse-carved pagodas. Let's face it, Japan is known for it's pagodas, among other things. And it's a perfect souvenir for a tourist to take home- their own personal pagoda and reminder of their travels to Japan!
You can see how cool they look- like these floating 3-D forms in glass. They are fairly deep, too, which heightens the effect.
Here's an unusual find- a reverse carved shipping boat.
Here's a closer look at the backs- you can see how they are carved on the reverse side to create the effect.
So what am I going to do with them, you ask? Good question! My intent was to remove them from their settings, and re-set in a new creative way. Not sure how yet! Will I be ruining their value? Probably. But since I didn't pay much for them, I don't think it'll be a major loss.
This is one idea I had- recognize the center piece? It's a micro-mosaic! I love how this was set in a modern, art deco style. I was thinking about setting the pagoda pieces similarly. I'll let you know when I come up with something!