Scarlet, Black, Brown, and White Beaded Pendant Necklace
The narrator's first descriptions of Hepzibah Pyncheon in Hawthorne's The House of the Seven Gables are unflattering, to say the least. Her youth is long gone, she's timid, she's aghast at the fact that she has to stop thinking of herself as a lady and start keeping shop to make ends meet, and she habitually looks and sounds angry and off-putting to just about everyone who encounters her.
And yet she is utterly lovable.
Over the course of the romance, we see her deep, fiercely protective love for her brother and her ready admiration and affection for her young relation Phoebe. There's so much more to Hepzibah than a first impression of her somber appearance and demeanor can apprehend.
And so the necklace inspired by her features a black pendant with a great scarlet flower blooming from the center like an expansive heart. And the other details of the design have special importance, too. The colors are mostly dark, and the darker Czech-glass beads were chosen to create an antique effect that recalls Hepzibah's age as well as the house's. The scarlet flowers are especially significant; Hepzibah's boarder, Mr. Holgrave, plants beans in the family garden, and the scarlet flowers are a sign of his cultivation and ultimately the positive role he plays in the Pyncheon family. The light-colored Czech-glass triangles hint at Phoebe's good effects on Hepzibah, her brother Clifford, and Mr. Holgrave, and both those beads and the chevron chain are meant to suggest the peaks of the house's gables. But the chain is also meant to toughen up this piece and pay tribute to Hepzibah's strength.
We all feel sometimes that, like Hepzibah, we're being judged and found wanting by people who don't know us well or who see us only in our worst moments. Let this necklace be a pledge to yourself that those misperceptions won't define you.
- length: adjustable from 15.5 to 18.25 inches
- pendant dimensions: approximately 45x23mm
- clasp length: 11.4mm
- gold-filled components: wire protectors, wire, clasp
- gold-plated components: spear-tipped headpin, chains, crimp covers
- sterling-silver crimp tubes