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Entries in gem gossip jewelry blog (11)

Jewelry Collection Stories: Nathalie of @NathaliesDesk

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We are back with this month's Jewelry Collection Story and it comes from Nathalie whom I discovered on Instagram! She has been posting eye-catching and droolworthy images of her personal collection, including her incredible and rare antique ring case collection. It was awesome to see that she found my #JewelryRoadTrip to Ohio alluring enough to buy two of the rings I featured--I love when people are able to connect that way with items that I showcase, it is honestly why I started the #JewelryRoadTrip project in the first place! I had to know more about her and her story, as well as see first-hand her gorgeous collection. Take it away Nathalie:

My journey with jewelry began with a 24K yellow gold bracelet.  It was a Sweet Sixteen birthday gift from my mother, my first jewelry piece from her – and I was disappointed.  At that age, I was hoping for new clothes, new shoes, or the latest coolest CD player.  I thanked my mother and tucked it away because I thought yellow gold was for old ladies.  Every year after that, she continued to bestow yellow gold to me on my birthdays.  They came in the form of more bracelets, necklaces, and pendants.  Each time, I would thank her, put away the pieces, and never wear them.  

On my 21st birthday, after receiving another piece of yellow gold jewelry it finally occurred to me to ask my mother why she chose this as my annual gift over other things.  To this she replied, “When you were 7 months old, your father and I had to escape our mother country (Vietnam) and when we arrived to our new country (France), I had to sell my jewelry in order to get things like food.”  And she kept on talking and sharing.  And I felt shame for being ungrateful, heartbreak for the hardships my parents endured.  I also started to see and love my mother in a whole new light.  She is my Wonder Woman.  And this was also the day I truly fell in love with jewelry and became a collector.

A while back, there was a question floating around in the Instagram world asking “Does jewelry make you a better person?”  To that I say “Yes, it does!”  It can lift your spirits up, it can create a bond between people, it can commemorate the loss of a loved one, or punctuate a special occasion.  Sometimes it is just downright magical.  If you are reading this blog, then I am sure you have chased or currently chasing some unicorn in the form of a ring, bracelet, necklace, or earrings.

I look for treasures in all kinds of places: at my local shops, fairs, and online (eBay, Etsy, Ruby Lane).  Collecting has its ebbs and flows.  I have gone years without buying a single piece, and other times when that is all I can think about!  What attracts me also seems to have its cycles which is why I rarely part with any of my pieces.  I am an equal bling opportunist, but I tend to gravitate towards rings.  I do think I am at a point where I need to par down a bit to make room for some new fabulous pieces.  Discovering the Instagram community truly enriched my knowledge and appreciation for past and current jewelry, in addition to making some lovely connections with others who understand this passion.

When I became a mom two and half years ago, I started daydreaming about what stories I would share with my daughter.  Every time I bring out my jewelry to play she is always by my side asking to play along.  It is so fun to see her light up as I let her try on my pieces.  Little does she know that she is already the owner of something very special.  When she had turned one month old my mother had gifted her the sweetest 24K gold bracelet.  And there will be many more treasures waiting for her.


 

 

xoxoGemGossip

WANT MORE? Check out the other Jewelry Collection Stories

You can follow Nathalie --> @NathaliesDesk

My Jewel Box: Elongated Antique Diamond Ring Obsession

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One look at these photos and you will realize my growing obsession for elongated antique diamond rings. I can't even remember really where or why it all started, but each one is incredibly unique, thoughtfully intricate and immaculately designed. Most of these types of rings are from the Edwardian period, where the tops are done in platinum and the shank and setting is done in yellow gold. The diamonds are almost always imperfectly perfect--wonky cuts, usually Old Mine cuts mixed with some Old European cuts, maybe even a single cut where the tiniest stones lay. The shapes and silhouette can be worn either way, so there's no "upside down" side to these pieces! Some tend to be more geometric than others, while some have lacy attributes. Some look like a diamond creature, while others look very floral and feminine. I've noticed these diamonds tend to be high on the clarity scale, but often are very low on the color scale, sometimes even playing off the different levels of yellow-ness within the design itself. 

Oddly enough, I've found most of my entire collection of these particular rings on eBay! While in Las Vegas, I added another to my collection (the one on my pointer finger in the above photos). It was a surprisingly good find and per usual, fell into place...as I was wrapping up my last full day at the show and was about to head out, I stumbled upon it!  It was sold to me by Bluestone Trading Company based out of Cleveland, Ohio. It was love at first sight and definitely a happy moment when I realized I hadn't found anything for myself the past two days at the shows yet. The worst would have been if I bought something else that I totally wasn't in love with and spent my money, and then found this afterwards! That's my worst nightmare!  haha It was a great way to commemorate the trip, as it was one of the most busy/hard-working weekends of my life! 

I've seen some amazing auction archives with gorgeous examples of elongated Edwardian diamond rings. Sad that I missed out on them, but excited that they may resurface onto the market someday. These kinds of rings are an investment piece, that's for sure! So, you either have to continually save so when you do find one, you are able to buy it.  Or buy it on credit and pay it off eventually over time or sell a few smaller rings to pay for one large one like these. I never thought I would have a collection like this back when I started my blog in 2008.  It is crazy to see how far my love for jewelry has come and how many miles I've traveled all in the name of jewels!!

 

xoxoGemGossip

SURPRISE Wedding Day Jewelry Post: Gem Gossip Wedding 

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Hey!  It is Danielle, your newly married jewelry blogger, here to surprise you with a special blog post featuring my wedding day jewels!  I know I'm supposed to be enjoying the moment and packing for my honeymoon, but I felt the need to show my dedicated readers what I wore on my big day, especially since this year has been so crazy and I have you all to thank for making it possible to have Gem Gossip as my full-time gig.  

As soon as I got engaged, I knew I wanted "something old, something new, something borrowed and something blue," to be a big part of my wedding day jewelry.  My dress limited me from wearing a necklace--so my focus was on EARRINGS.  They would be my statement piece!  I fell in love with this pair from Andreoli Jewelry last year when I took part in Luxury Prive Preview in NYC.  To my disbelief, the earrings were one-of-a-kind and had since sold.  I had been searching for something else for months before my wedding, with nothing else comparing because all I wanted were those coral, diamond and emerald cabochon tassel earrings!!  Just weeks before my big day, I got news that antoher pair were created and everything worked out.  These dream earrings were going to be a part of my wedding day ensemble and I couldn't have been happier!  Thanks Andreoli Jewelry for letting me borrow these incredible, statement-making earrings. They are the prettiest pair of earrings I've ever seen, in my opinion.  

MY RINGS:

Right hand, pinky ring: My something blue--a blue topaz heart ring that I've had for a couple years now--I designed it shortly after I first got engaged and wasn't supposed to wear it until my wedding day, which never panned out.  I wore it A LOT in between then and now, and I'm very proud to wear it on my wedding day.

Right hand, ring finger: my something new--both pieces were designed specifically for my wedding day by Rocks & Metals in Brentwood, TN. The modern fede ring was made from a piece of scrap cut off from a larger design--it features two hands, one slipping a ring onto the other. The other ring is a six-diamond band, totaling 1.50 carats, which was made from scratch.  I've always wanted a band like this, but with Old Mine cut diamonds, and I could never find one tiny enough that fit the bill.  Hence, just make one yourself! It will replace lots of tiny, tiny diamond bands that I have.  Bigger is better.

Right hand, middle finger: my wedding day present from Matt. This ring first crossed my path when I visited Joden in Grove City, PA on my Pennsylvania Jewelry Road Trip! After I got home from my trip, I couldn't stop thinking about the ring and thought it would be a perfect wedding day present because of the opal.  October's birthstone of opal would be significant since it not only is when we said "I do," but it is also Matt's birthstone. The ring also got a slight makeover, which happened only five days prior to my wedding date. (I'll post the BEFORE photo on my Instagram page).  I wanted the focus to be on the insane boulder opal that it was all about rather than some fanciness surrounding it.  Plus I thought it looked too 1980s, since that was most likely when it was made.  I absoultely love this ring and I will treasure it forever.  Thanks Joden for having such a cool ring and special thanks to Rocks & Metals for giving it a makeover under my direction. It turned out exactly what I had pictured!

Left hand, pointer finger: this is my something old...and my extremely sentimental finger stack. My grandparents wedding bands--both my grandfather's (who has since passed) and grandmother's (who was there to celebrate). Their love and strong bond is such an inspiration to me, which is why I chose the date of October 21st as my wedding date--it was their wedding date as well, only 59 years ago and in Italy. Their bands are engraved with their wedding date and names. The other ring I stacked on top is my other grandma's ring--who couldn't make it to the wedding. She is as hard-headed as they come and refuses to travel by airplane and also doesn't own a car...hence why she couldn't make it. She wore this ring most of her life.

Left hand, ring finger: my engagement ring! Most know the story about my engagement ring. My wedding band is a delicate, hand engraved with a really feminine pattern, band done in a matching rosy gold. I picked up the band when I was out in California taking my 20-stone exam at GIA, completing my Graduate Gemologist degree. Matt was out there with me, and on the 2nd day/2nd attempt I passed, which meant we were in California for three more days with no prior plans!  He immediately picked me up from passing my exam and we went down to Ocean Beach to check out my favorite store--Ocean Beach Antique Mall, where they famously have a mini treasure chest full of rings that you can sift through.  It was in that treasure chest that I found that dainty ring. It was the only ring I've ever tried on with my engagement ring that didn't detract from the look of my engagement ring and seemed as though it complemented it rather than overwhelmed it. That trip to California was very significant in my career, so it was the perfect moment to find that ring that would forever become my wedding band.

>> Hoping to post more about my wedding when I get back from my honeymoon. xoxo Gem Gossip

How to Create Your Own Gem Gossip Jewelry Cabinet

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I was really excited and proud to launch my first-ever Gem Gossip video just before the holidays.  The video gives viewers an inside look into my typical day as a jewelry blogger and collector.  To think, it all started with a love for jewelry, and with six and a half years of hard work and dedication I’ve created an enormous amount of information in this field on GemGossip.com.  

After receiving lots of feedback on the video, I noticed an overwhelming amount of questions about how I store all my rings.  Whether you want to call it a jewelry closet, jewelry cabinet, an armoire, or jewelry cupboard, my way of storing my rings has caused a lot of stir!  I’m here to answer all those curious minds about what you just saw!  

My secret is the Lori Greiner mirrored jewelry cabinet.  This solution keeps one very important piece of advice in mind that I have for people—if it is out of sight, it is out of mind!  Each piece of jewelry stored in this cabinet is visible.  If you have one of those jewelry boxes that has tiny compartments or you keep your pieces in boxes hidden from sight, I say ditch those! There is nothing that I hate more than a piece of jewelry that gets no wear!  I bought mine off of QVC several years ago and as a jewelry connoisseur, have yet to fill it up completely! (Yes, there is THAT much room!) Of course, I've tweaked mine the best way possible for my own needs, which involved ripping out shelves, some hot glue and creativity. I bought velvet ring liners that had ring slots and cut them to size.  I then used some hot glue and laid each down, and waited for it to dry.  These new ring slots took the place of necklace hooks, but since I don’t wear too many necklaces and alternative space for necklaces on the door, it has allowed me for better use of the cabinet space!  Might even rip out one more row for more rings (which I actually did, video shown above)!  I also love the earring racks which allow you to not take the backs off each earring when storing them away. Another perk is the variety of color the jewelry box comes in--black, white, cherry, walnut and antique oak.

Here are all the links you need to create your own jewelry cabinet:

Lori Greiner stand-up mirrored jewelry cabinet from QVC

 

 

 

Gem Gossip Jewelry Blog: "It started with a love for jewelry..."

 

Gem Gossip has been my passion, a labor of love for the past six and a half years.  Jewelry and antique jewelry are most likely what I am thinking about 90% of the time...seriously. It is all consuming and so incredibly fun. I am so proud and happy to have found and fostered my true passion...very few get to live everyday doing something they can't get enough of.  With this love, it has changed throughout these years and every year...and it has changed me.  I am excited to continue to grow Gem Gossip as a brand in the years to come, with many fun projects in the works. Let's make this a full-time gig!  Here's to big dreams and never giving up!

Video credit:

my amazing, talented little sister BunnyMiele