Anatomy of a Necklace- Designing the Woodland Nymph

Jewelry design is a series of incremental changes and decisions.  It takes a carefully trained eye to know when a piece has arrived at completion – not when there is nothing more to add – but when there is nothing more to take away.  The Woodland Nymph necklace by Victoria Tane exemplifies this process.

Every piece of jewelry designed at Victoria Tane Studios goes through several iterations before it is finished.   Initially the inspiration for the Woodland Nymph was a color palette of earthy greens and browns focusing on the pointed oval horn medallion.  Take a look at the progression of this necklace from start to finish.

Original      Finished 

                                            Original Woodland Nymph Necklace    Final Woodland Nymph Necklace      

Original Elements        Final Elements

                    Original Elements    Final Elements

The Woodland Nymph was originally inspired by one black/brown, oval piece of horn.   This element, in congruence with the upcoming spring season, sparked the idea for a necklace with a very natural, green look.   In the original design the curved white pieces did not fit around the neck as intended and were too bright for the palette.

Once in was determined that the white pieces could not be used, changes were applied and iteration 2 was created.  Different elements were then added to the ends of the necklace in their place.  With this design though, though the color choices were better, there were still too many elements and the necklace didn’t “flow.”

Iteration 2

Iteration 2

Next, elements were changed and added so that they were more graduated around the neck.  But there was too much contrast with white pieces.

Iteration 3

Iteration 3

The fourth version of the necklace was close to completion, but the color dynamic of the piece needed more variation.  The smaller white pieces from iteration 3 were taken out because they were too strong, distracted the eye away from the center.  From iteration 4 to the final product, much of the shape and overall style stayed similar, but the long green pieces next to the centerpiece were swapped out for abalone shell. 

Iteration 4

Iteration 4

Finally, the necklace was complete.  The color, shape and texture throughout the piece flowed well. The abalone shell added light and shimmer without being overpowering.  Compare the first set of elements with the final set of elements.  You’ll see that there are fewer in the final design.  Once the elements were edited out, the completed necklace is balanced and elegant.

The Woodland Nymph– final

 Final Woodland Nymph Necklace


Anatomy of a Necklace- Designing the Woodland Nymph — 2 Comments

  1. I love the use of color and texture in this necklace. As a designer myself, it’s great to see how you illustrated the process and the decisions involved in creating the final product.

  2. This is facinating and beautiful. To really see the process is something we are not always familiar with. Thank you for sharing this.

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