(An example of early Serpent jewlery, from the Christie's Auction House)
ENTER THE SERPENT
The image of a serpent being used in jewlery isn't a new thing. The ancient Egyptians worshipped the reptile, they viewed the animal as a symbol of royalty. The Greeks and the Egyptians kept the snakes around and used the venom as a way to give high society a respectful death. It was fabled that Cleopatra committed suicide by coaxing an Asp or a Horned Viper to bite her after the her lover Marc Anthony was killed. ( It's probably not true, but it made for a great final scene in Shakespeare's play)
With thy sharp teeth this knot intrinsicate
Of life at once untie: poor venomous fool
Be angry, and dispatch.
—Cleopatra, Act V, scene II
There is something dark, dangerous and sensual about the slinky persona of the snake.
Nobody gave the snake haired mythological creature, Medusa, a hard time..... or even dared to look at her.
Women have had a love/ hate relationship with snakes...from biblical times...in The Book of Genesis, that darn sneaky snake slithered down onto a branch..and convinced Eve to eat the forbidden apple from the tree of knowledge ..and thus destroyed innocence... but hey, if she hadn't eaten the apple, Adam and Eve wouldn't have realized they were naked, and where would fashion be? It all started with the fig leaf!
EXAMPLES OF ANTIQUE SERPENTS
VINTAGE SNAKE JEWLERY FROM the 1940's
Below are some examples of theatrical snake jewlery created by Joseff of Hollywood. His creations were used in Hollywood movies during the 1930's, 1940's and 1950's. His work was showcased in movies such as "Gone With The Wind" and "Around the World in Eighty Days."
Below, a vintage Egyptian revival snake necklace designed by Hattie Carnegie, a fashion entrepreneur based in New York City from the 1920s to the 1960s. $875 https://www.rubylane.com
(Below) Elegant Victorian snake bangle bracelet with cabochon turquoise beads $11,500 https://www.1stdibs.com/
French Circ 1880 Antique serpent necklace, pearls, ruby and Enamel, 18Kt Gold.
Stunning French intertwined serpent cuff worn by Maggie Gyllenhaal to the Golden Globes in 2015. Dates to the late 19th century.
FAVOURITE POP CULTURE SNAKE MOMENTS
One of my fav movies, Kill Bill, named all of its villianous hitwomen after deadly serpents: Cottonmouth, Black Mamba, Copperhead and the California Mountain snake ( of course Bill himself was the Snake Charmer) Snake.
Remember when Britney Spears decided to wear the albino boa constrictor during her performance of “I’m A Slave 4 U” at the 2001 MTV VMAs? I can't. I think it was one of the sexiest performances to ever grace the stage.
My weak and unscientific synopsis concludes that women who like serpents ( insert sexual innuendo here) aren't sweet little angels, they're super cool bitches. Daryl Hannah, aka The Black Mountain snake...it doesn't get any "badder" then that.
SNAKE JEWELRY ON THE RED CARPET
SERPENTINE LOOKS FROM THE 2016 GUCCI SPRING RUNWAY SHOW
The show featured the sweetest floral dresses and blouses and amongst the garden flowers a snake lurked...perhaps the women in the garden aren't as innocent as they appear?
GUCCI SNAKE HEEL SANDALS 2016
Available at: https://www.gucci.com Retail: $1,130 (Can)
WELL HEELED SNAKE
Available in various colours at Aliexpress.com $63.00 (US)
Giuseppe Zanotti Snake Heels from the 2014 Collection.
SNAKE/ GREEK HEADRESS AT THE VALENTINO 2016 SPRING COUTURE SHOW
SNAKE CLASP NECKLACE ANNIE BOUGHT JAY IN NEW ORLEANS..Doesn't it just look like it could crawl right off the table? Awesome.. I can't wait to wear it.