Filigree and some memories

 
My love for Filigree started long back, when i was about 8-9 years old .  Since my family hails from Orissa, a trip to Cuttack in summer was a given. My trips to Cuttack meant a lot of pampering , and it all came in the form of silver trinkets, anklets and pendants. Silver in Cuttack in those days was available and sold like it were a cheap, useless piece of metal. Almost every unmarried girl wore silver.  Most  of the silver you got in Cuttack then was with filigree work.  Most say the artisans in Cuttack have unmatched potential for the art. Filigree or tarakashi as it is locally known in Orissa, is said to be world famous.  But it is sad- the way the art is dying. The karigar /Artisan  there,  lack design and direction to cater to  modern day tastes and demand. They still produce the run of the mill Konark wheels, peacocks, idols, pendants and anklets. The designs that I saw as a 9 year old are still being made. The Konark wheels used to be one of the most gifted mementos at one point in time. I still see them in state handicraft emporiums and they seem to be quite a hit with the foreign tourists.

A quick reference to Wikipedia says

Filigree(formerly written filigrann or filigrane; also known as telkari, the name given in Anatolia, meaning “wire work”, and cift-isi, pronounced chift-ishi, meaning “tweezers work”) is a jewel work of a delicate kind made with twisted threads usually of gold and silveror stitching of the same curvy motif. It oftens suggests lace, and is most popular in French fashion decoration from 1660 to the present. It is now exceedingly common for ajourejewellery work to be mislabelled as filigree. While both have many open areas, filigree involves threads being soldered together to form an object and ajoure involves holes being punched, drilled, or cut through an existing piece of metal.

The word, which is usually derived from the Latinfilum, thread, and granum, grain, is not found in Ducange, and is indeed of modern origin. According to Prof. Skeat it is derived from the Spanish filigrana, from “filar”, to spin, and grano, the grain or principal fibre of the material.

In fact you can trace back and find traces of Filigree in ancient Egypt, medieval Europe and Asia (Cuttack being one of the most prominent place where the art took shape).

And Filigree has come a long way. Check these out:

 

A stained delight

A stained delight

 

A more Traditional One

A more Traditional One

 

And you thought filigree is on Silver only?

And you thought filigree is on Silver only?

Charming!

Charming!

For a dressy, delicate look

For a dressy, delicate look

A must visit shop on Etsy (southwinddesign)

A must visit shop on Etsy (southwinddesign)

Pair them with a white kurti!

Pair them with a white kurti!

Put aside that rock, slip this in.

Put aside that rock, slip this in.

Filigree in its original form

Filigree in its original form

Steampunk Necklace

Image Sources:

www.etsy.com

www.pombero.co.uk

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