To celebrate Caterina’s elevation, a number of us made largess (gifts) to present to the King and Queen as part of the “bountiful chests of House Fine Lames” (her SCA house). I’m not a member of her house, but sort of an ‘extended family member’, so I contributed the lute-shaped purse I made previously, along with 17 faux pearl and coral necklaces.
A number of portraits from the Italian Renaissance show pearl, coral, or pearl and coral necklaces. I used toggle clasps, and made them slightly longer than choker length, as per the portraits (also, many people don’t like wearing choker necklaces, so that’s a big factor too.) The beads are all from Fire Mountain beads, though the small spacer beads near the clasp are just glass beads leftover from another project. You can’t put the bar of a toggle clasp right up against a large bead, or the bar won’t go through the ring easily to close the necklace.
I did look for pendants to put on the necklaces, but the only ones I could find were just to expensive for me to buy to give away. Hopefully if the recipients are really keen on doing late period Italian costuming, they might find a pendant in the future and add it. These are necklaces very similar to the ones I made for myself for my last Italian costume.
I also took a box from last year’s Body Shop Advent Calendar, covered it in paper, and made a “pillow” with a cardboard backing, polyfil, and fabric to pin the necklaces into. Each of the necklaces is tagged, but the tags are behind the pillow, which pops out of the box. This way the necklaces can be nicely displayed for the gifting, but also there’s a place to store them, and display/store future necklaces too (which often get tangled in largess bins).
Below are just a few portraits, directly linked from Pinterest illustrating the use of necklaces in this style. Some have pendants, while many do not have pendants.