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She walks in beauty, like the night

Of cloudless climes and starry skies;

And all that’s best of dark and bright

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A few nights ago I visited the V&A during  one of its buoyant Friday late nights. The museum’s grand entrance was transformed into an buzzing social playground and dance music bumped from wall to wall. The ethereal scenes of cheer seemed to vibrate throughout the historic monument.

The focus of this Friday late night was  the Pearls exhbition, so naturally lectures and workshops explored the rules of adornment, what we wear and why?  This event attracted a bevy of pearl aficionados,  I noticed many women wearing pearls, perhaps as a nod to the exhbition. One woman stole the spotlight with a string of pearls that dangled below the waistline and a black hat lined with big round faux pearls. 

I listened to a lecture by Dr Beatriz Chadour-Sampson and Dr Najla Ismael (Qatar National Heritage expert.) The talk gave an intriguing insight into the history of pearls, jewellery and adornment form both a Qatari and European perspective. Here are some gems from the lecture:

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A thing of beauty is a joy for ever:  Its lovliness increases; it will never  Pass into nothingness; but still will keep  A bower quiet for us, and a sleep  Full of sweet dreams, and health, and quiet breathing.  Therefore, on every morrow, are we wreathing  A flowery band to bind us to the earth,  Spite of despondence, of the inhuman dearth  Of noble natures, of the gloomy days,  Of all the unhealthy and o'er-darkn'd ways  Made for our searching: yes, in spite of all,  Some shape of beauty moves away the pall  From our dark spirits. Such the sun, the moon,  Trees old and young, sprouting a shady boon  For simple sheep; and such are daffodils  With the green world they live in; and clear rills  That for themselves a cooling covert make  'Gainst the hot season; the mid-forest brake,  Rich with a sprinkling of fair musk-rose blooms:  And such too is the grandeur of the dooms  We have imagined for the mighty dead;  An endless fountain of immortal drink,  Pouring unto us from the heaven's brink. 

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Ring from the Yoko Collection, London.  18k white and black gold ring with 1.83 cts. of diamonds and south sea pearl 13-14mm. © Yoko London.

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Inspirational earrings from the Mayfair collection, Yoko, London.  18k white gold earrings with 14.77 cts. of diamonds and south sea pearls 14-15mm. © Yoko London

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