What we know
today as the beautiful city, Paris, was originally settled by
the Gauls of Parisii tribe in 250-200BC as a fishing village
along the river Seine. Many centuries later, after a multitude
of wars, devastating plagues and destructive revolutions, this
romantic city has survived the test of time to remain one of
the most exciting cites in the world. It took a succession of
Kings and Emperors to rebuild Paris (many times) adding beautiful
palaces, museums to rival any in the world, formal gardens, monuments
and giant thoroughfares, in a mix of styles, but all reflecting
the age of renaissance.
In the 17th century,
cultural life in the city flourished. The first café/restaurant,
Café Procope opened in 1672. In 1681 the first theatre
opened in the Ile de la Cité (the original part of the
city) called the Comédie Française and offered
exciting plays and musicals.
the city grew and developed in the 18th century, it became the
center of an explosion of philosophic and scientific activity
known as the Age of Enlightenment. The first encyclopedia was
published in 1751-52 offering intellectuals across Europe a high
quality survey of human knowledge. Cafés now numbered
in the 400's. They became the meeting places for writers and
scholars. These cafés were important centers for exchanging
news, rumors and ideas, often more reliable than the newspapers
of the day.
In the late 19th
and early 20th century, Paris became the birthplace of modern
art. This era was called La Belle Époque (the beautiful
era) and the city was full of artists trying to make their way.
Many masterpieces of literature, music, theater and visual arts
gained recognition. Can you imagine the likes of Renoir, Picasso
and Matisse (to name a few) hanging out and discussing art at
a local café?
In the second
half of the 19th century, Paris began to host Universal Exhibitions
(five in all), which attracted millions of visitors. The expositions
celebrated technology and industry. I would have loved to have
been a visitor! Can you imagine visiting the booths of Alexander
Graham Bell displaying his telephone, or Thomas Edison presenting
his new phonograph? What about seeing the head of the Statue
of Liberty before she was shipped to America?
Eiffel Tower is in easy view as you experience the first escalator
and the world's largest Ferris wheel. The exhibitions also introduced
talking films and art nouveau to the world. René Lalique
exhibited his work at the Universal Exhibition in 1900 and was
an immediate sensation. He offered jewelry, objects d'art made
of bronze, ivory and glass. His success is legendary!
in Paris is inspired by the all of the imagery I viewed while
I was researching information about early Paris. As I was designing,
I kept thinking about how amazing it would have been to visit
Paris during the exhibitions and the wonders that I would have
seen. As an artist, I am sure I would have been humbled (and
inspired) by the skills of the artisans exhibiting. Wonders of
This design evokes
the blend of the Renaissance period, with the new and exciting,
Art Nouveau style. A unique way of bezeling a pear CZ, offers
a smooth shape and is much easier than the traditional way. Swarovski
pearl cabs, with herringbone shaped embellishing, have an art
nouveau feel. Flat peyote stitched necklace straps, interspersed
with tiny bezeled 6mm CZ's, add just the right touch to this
delicate necklace. Vive la France!
Workshop: This is a 1 day workshop
Skill level: Intermediate to advanced
Necklace length: My samples are 17"