I’m drawn to coral like a treasure hunter. It makes me think of Tibetan necklaces and the ancient Silk Route and holidays on tropical beaches. Rough pieces washed up on a beach in Fiji; smooth beads bought from an Afghani seller in Bangkok; carved Chinese earrings and engraved twisted stem, given to me by close friends; and a vintage button from an old mixed bag of my mother’s. So many colours and textures: strawberry, grapefruit pink, salmon, burnt scarlet…
Small mother-of-pearl buttons sewn onto a card of silver foil. Large carved buttons from someone else’s elderly German aunts. A delicately detailed brooch set in Bethlehem silver. Two broken pieces of jewellery, both from my Grandmother’s youth: a string of beads and an elephant brooch, brought together fifty years later into a treasured necklace.
Tropical fish swim over vintage coral on Australian and Singaporean stamps.
Coral toenails on a floor of timber off-cuts.
Vintage buckles of bone and old plastic, Tibetan skull beads, antique orphaned domino, a Fijian cowrie shell found on an island once owned by the Mafia, a small cowrie shell from a piece of Rajasthani embroidery, and shell beads from Afghanistan.
Tiny sunset-shaded scallop shells from a New Zealand beach.