INSPIRATION for my Praying Mantis Ornament
My father has been asking me to make him a praying mantis ornament from the moment that I finished my stag beetle. I always loved the idea… but, as jewellery is my passion, the piece had to be adaptable to a necklace or pendant. And what was I supposed to do with those long delicate legs? So I dithered, procrastinated and delayed making it. It was a 2 year wait until he finally got his model of a European Praying Mantis – and now she sits proudly on his dressing table.
The choice of the European Praying Mantis, as opposed to other mantids, was based on its relatively larger head – which of course gives it a huge amount of character. This choice also sat well with me, having once been captivated by one while hiking in the French Alps when I was an engineering student in Grenoble.
Modelling the prayting mantis brought about one of my favourite stories. While modelling the mantis, I shared a few snaps of it in its embryonic state. One of my customers, who happened to live not too far away from me, contacted me offering to lend me her son’s deceased praying mantis pet! Once I got over the shock, my answer was, of course, “Yes!”. She was really useful in being able to look carefully at a real creature, rather than imagining how she is from photographs. And she also accompanied me to the RHS Wisley Spring Fair that year.
The mantis model is approximately life-sized.
What my customers say:
Nothing yet – but my Dad absolutely loves her! And she always captivates whoever she meets at my fairs.