When I last visited my mother, she gave me a pair of cross/dagger-like earrings, from Palau. They were made of real tortoiseshell. She assured me the turtle was in fact eaten, and the shell was used thereafter. It is illegal, in the US, to bring in tortoiseshell, so I suppose I'm a lawbreaker having these in my possession. For many Pacific cultures (my own included), eating turtle is a traditional food. Although I've never tried it, and not sure if my Western upbringing can go there. As a child, I once saw turtle soup made for a wedding, and I suffered mild culture shock, but have since been over it.....
These tortoiseshell pieces felt very special, and seemed to emit their own power. I combined one of the tortoiseshell pieces with mineral bits, I've collected, and strung it on simple hardware ball chain. I sometimes wear this charm necklace when I crave protection.
// Metal ball chain, tortoiseshell charm, vintage wire wrapped quartz crystal, vintage jasper-like stone with gold edging. Necklace made of mostly found, reused materials. The wood bowl, carved from one piece, was a find on a thrifting jaunt.