Saturday, May 5, 2012

Love Affair with Mah Jongg

Playing mah jongg is one of my favorite past times and I play regularly twice a week with two different groups of women many of whom I taught how to play.  It is a game of skill and chance and really keeps the brain active.  My mom played all her adult life and I have fond memories of the ladies coming over to our house in Cleveland, Ohio every month when the weekly game rotated and it was my mom's turn to host.  I remember her setting out the bridge mix.  Maybe there were cocktails or coffee - that I don't remember because it was the bridge mix I had my eye on...especially those chews.  But what I most remember was lying in my bed and feeling so safe and secure listening to the clickety clack of the tiles and the soothing sounds of the ladies, in the near by dining room, calling out their discards..."one bam, two crack, green" as I eased into a peaceful sleep.  Mom, I hope you're enjoying playing mah jongg with all your long time buddies and really cleaning up on the coin up there.  One day I'll be up there joining you. 

And as synchronicity would have it, Cleveland just hosted Project Mah Jongg, the first exhibition of its kind - taking visitors on an exploration of the game's cultural meanings through sight, sound, text and play.  
Click HERE, to watch the original documentary short called: 
Use the password:  mj

In honor of my love of mah jongg, I have created two necklaces featuring a mah jongg tile as the focal.

This necklace is made with vintage sari ribbons and sterling silver findings.
This second necklace is made with bronze chain, bronze wire and both glass and semiprecious beads.  

I twisted several sari ribbons together.  I hand formed the center ring and the closure form 14 gauge sterling.  I drilled through the maj jongg tile with a diamond drill bit.

Vintage glass and semiprecious beads hang from the bottom of the maj tile.
Who's your #1?

To secure the sari ribbons, I added a sterling wire wrap and semi precious beads on one side of the necklace. 

I made a triangular closure with bronze and soldered it closed.  The mah jongg tile acts as the toggle.

I love maj jongg and jewelry making!

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