By Danielle Olivia Tefft, jewelry writer
I love this time of year. The leaves are turning to shades of gold, crimson red and yellow. The air has a crisp edge that makes the hair on the back of your neck stand at attention. And just like many in homage to the supernatural, I begin to think about all things creepy and crawly. It is also the time of year when ordinary things strike me as just a bit more odd and peculiar. Take for instance, operculum shell. It is a perfect natural oddity, used in jewelry, to talk about during the days before Halloween!
The Victorians loved this odd natural treasure from the sea. Mesmerized by symbolism and lore, they believed many objects and materials contained special powers to heal and influence their owners. Operculum was no exception. They likened the look of operculum shell to a cat's eye or a protective eye. Jewelry with operculum shells was worn to protect against being cursed by the evil eye.
Operculum shell is actually the protective cover that certain sea and land snails use to close themselves inside their shells for protection. From the outside, it is a flat, hard, rather non-descript disc. The other side of the operculum disc, however, looks like an odd, shiny mound that amazingly resembles an eye. There is a wonderful Pinterest board you can check out here to see more of this amazing shell jewelry. Victorian pieces are still highly collectible today.
Do you own a piece of Victorian jewelry with operculum shells? Please tell us about it with in the comments section. Also, if you love antique and vintage jewelry, don't forget to subscribe to this blog so you won't miss an article!
Danielle Olivia Tefft is a professional writer with a lifelong passion for gems, jewelry and fashion. She is a GIA accredited jewelry professional and the owner of online antique and vintage jewelry shop, Treasure Box Antiques. Current projects include ghostwriting jewelry and fashion blogs for clients worldwide. When she is not writing, she spends time in the garden, spoiling her cats and traveling with her fiancé. Would you like to hire her? Visit her website danielleoliviatefftwrites.com for clips, terms and more information.
About This Blog:
The Found in the Jewelry Box Blog is my attempt to teach others about the wonderful world of gems and jewelry, past and present. Please enjoy!