Friday, March 11, 2011

Tribal Trends: Camel Bone

The tribal necklace trend has maintained strong perseverance, endurance, almost a defiance, in the face of the seemingly capricious whims of sartorial gods and goddesses, whose decrees and tempers and romances trickle at first, then deluge down to the masses, contorting and perverting in their descent. With as ambiguous a label as tribal, this trend, generally involving natural materials and shapes and structures evocative of historically and socioeconomically primitive peoples from around the globe, has been able to morph and adapt and stay new. I admire January Jones, not only for her hauntingly accurate depictions of 60s housewife malaise and ennui, of the individual's struggle for satisfaction and fulfillment independent of others and relationship fetters and confining societal pressures, but for her ability to transcend this already iconic character's impeccably classic style and create unique and memorable looks as January, outside of Betty. This dress, a sort of formal interpretation of the tribal necklace trend, is a great example.

As most of my jewelry is either bestowed on me from elder relatives, treasures from my mother or grandmother, or scoured from the shelves of a myriad of antique, vintage, and consignment shops along the eastern seaboard, it generally does not reflect contemporary jewelry trends. The necklace I wore yesterday was, as I mentioned, a gift, from my manager, Sallie, who has since the inception of our relationship become both a life mentor and a friend. She had found this piece while on a business-turned-personal pleasure trip in Jordan, back in December. She and her husband are an inspiring couple; they have been married for years, both with full and challenging careers, together raising a bright and talented son, and still manage to share new and exciting experiences with one another. After her business meeting in Amman, he met her in this exotic eastern land, where they explored the Dead Sea, deserts, hot springs, ancient ruins, and modern towns, all in the crux of humanity's early civilizations and Western religious foundations. Given the intense work drama, complete with funemployment looming, and the financial and social stress this all imposed on me, Sallie was kind and generous to remember me while on her vacation.

The necklace is carved from camel bone, and is unlike any other piece of jewelry I own; coming from a young lady who has been collecting vintage pieces for over a decade, this is quite a feat. It is exciting to receive a gift that would have possibly been passed unnoticed in my eyes, upon first glance, but one that I find so beautiful and am so glad to be able to wear; this surely is the mark of great perception and intuition into a person's personality, finding something new and adored and admired that they would never have noticed on their own. I adore the flat, tiled look of the squares, as well as the simple geometric pattern in white. I had no idea camel bone was brown, a sort of soft chocolate or toffee color, and despite its length and size, the necklace is surprisingly light and easy to wear.

I love the simple line design of contrasting brown and white, which works well when combined with neutrals, especially all of my black clothing, but also manages to stand out and accentuate the neck with bright, bold colors, such as the orange and navy blue cardigan from yesterday.

(January Jones image taken from This Is Not New)

1 comment:

  1. What a beautiful necklace-it was so nice of your manager to remember you! I, too, have acquired most of my jewelry the same ways you mentioned, and that is not a piece I would tend to pick out for myself, but it is lovely and it would be so much fun to style! :)