Banh Thanh Nga Necklace
(Detailed Images, Full Image)
"Banh Thanh Nga" (bon-ton-wa) means "Wafer Home" in Vietnamese. In a trip to Vietnam in 2010, I was awe-struck by the very narrow, tall houses built in Hanoi. The government taxes property by the width of the home, so the Vietnamese built narrow -- 10 - 15' wide -- and up, often to 6 or more stories. I have pictured some of these houses below.
My BANH THANH NGA NECKLACE is influenced by these homes. Distinctive layers or levels stacked above one another. Great texture and dimension. An emphasis on the narrow, yet reaching up for the sky. As your eye moves from the roof to the ground, you experience great interplays of light and shadow.
This piece is beadwoven, using Miyuki Tila beads, and a hybrid between square stich and ladder stitch. Tila beads are flat squares with two holes running through them. In each horizontal component, I have layered, recessed and stacked the tilas. Each horizontal component is segmented in two with a beadwoven lace using 15/0 seed beads. This segmenting allows the piece to more easily take the shape of the wearer's body, thus move, drape and flow more naturally. The chain is plated over brass. There is a simple hook and eye clasp, which allows the necklace to be adjustable in length. I envisioned the piece to be worn close to the neck, but it can be worn lower, as well.
As in several of my pieces, I often reference the "man's tie" profile. I think it's especially sexy when a woman wears a man's tie.
to as shown, with plated brass chain,
--- Warren Feld
Narrow Houses (Wafer Houses) in Vietnam