Entries in italian jewelry (6)
We are ringing in the New Year today with an inspiring and gorgeous Jewelry Collection Story from Angela, or what we may like to call her "Gemstone Gypsy." I find her collection entirely intriguing and I love how sentimental and closely tied to her heritage many of the pieces are. Let's get right into it:
"I've loved jewelry since I was a child. My maternal grandmother is a serious collector who worked for Tiffany and Hermes and taught me how to appreciate everything from major Victorian rings to beautiful Chanel costume pieces. She’s real, old New York – always in head to toe black, purple Chanel lipstick and Ferragamo shoes – and I idolized her as a child! I would sit with her in her apartment, riveted, while she showed me what things were made of and explained why they were valued. She really impressed upon me the importance of quality construction, too, and how to spot it. My paternal side is Brooklyn Italian, and they love their gold! So since an early age I had lots of adornment around me.
Anyone who knows me also knows that I'm hugely sentimental, so apart from the aesthetic aspect of jewelry, I love what it means in a personal sense. In the end, regardless of material, a piece’s value is truly in the story it carries, and what it becomes in the eye of the beholder. The simplest, most inexpensive thing can become hugely meaningful if it is loved or given with love, and I find that so magical."
Above: My collection of vintage + antique yellow gold Italian/Catholic protection charms, shown on top of pictures of my grandmothers in Brooklyn in the early 1920s-30s. A Gold Rush-era gold nugget lock, American Victorian 10k carnelian cross, and Victorian goldfill locket.
"My personal jewelry collection is not enormous (though my husband would definitely disagree!) but it is pretty varied - everything from Georgian gold rings to Mexican silver pieces from the 70s. I've also built up a fair amount of contemporary, handmade pieces as well, many of them made by jewelers I know personally and count as friends. It makes the pieces that much more special! I do have certain themes I stick to – eras, styles and stones I love.
I’m drawn to sapphires because they are my husband’s birthstone. I love rubies, just because. Georgian, Victorian + Art Deco are my favorite eras to collect. I always go for big, statement rings over anything else. And, if given the choice, I’d pick any of what I call the “soft stones” – agates, turquoise, lapis, coral – over diamonds (though a few diamonds never hurt anyone ;)"
Above: My wedding jewelry: Bands - Vintage 18k split band, Art Deco 18k and french cut sapphire eternity band from @duvenay, Art Deco 14k-lined platinum engraved band from Metier SF; My engagement ring, a 1920s sapphire + mine cut diamond target ring from London, and my wedding gift, a Georgian rose/old cut diamond cluster ring, also from London.
"My solid gold safety pin earrings from my Jewels for Gypsies line are one piece I literally wear every single day and never take off. They’re like a great combo of a stud and a hoop – you can sleep in them comfortably, they look chic if you want to dress them up but also have just the right amount of rocker edge to lend to any outfit."
Above: L-R: My Jewels for Gypsies 14k Safety Pin Earrings, Vintage 18k white gold and diamond safety pin pendant from @GoldAdore, 18k + Sapphire Indian Snake Hoops from @lisajshuler_apocketofrocks.
"Another favorite would be my necklace of Italian protection and religious charms – some I’ve had since childhood, some which my husband has given me or I’ve collected over the years. I wear them every day and rarely take them off, and all the women in my family do too – we’re very superstitious! If the necklace doesn’t match what I’m wearing (rare!) I’ll pin a few to my underwear, just in case."
Above: My everyday neck game: Jewels for Gypsies large 14k feather pendant in yellow gold with pavé rubies, a french-cut ruby and gold cross I bought in London, my 1940s 18k ruby + diamond A. Augis "I Love You More Every Day" pendant (a gift from my husband), and a 14k + ruby dagger, which is probably the piece people most commonly try to buy off my neck (I say no every time)!
Above: Victorian sterling, 14k gold, diamond and mother of pearl Miraculous medal - my 30th birthday gift from my husband, purchased from @theoneilovenyc.
One of my favorite pairs of earrings - diamond + 14k talons by my hugely talented friend Noriko Sugawara (of N+A New York). She's probably the best jeweler I know and she taught me how to make jewelry way back when.
Above: Assorted stick pin necklaces I made (l-r): a Georgian collet-set diamond, a 14k Tiffany & Co. Fishhook (formerly a tie tack of my dad's), and a platinum + diamond "J" for my husband, from @ishyantiques. The Victorian garnet is from @theoneilovenyc.
"I have a Victorian Garnet cabochon ring with a halo of opals that my husband gave me one birthday early on in our relationship that’s really special to me. Garnet is my birthstone, and I love the symbolism of fidelity it carries with it. It’s the first antique, and the first ring he ever gave me, so it holds a lot of meaning for me. I even make a point to wear it to weddings and family occasions to lend love and positive symbolism to the event."
Above: Symbols of Love: A Victorian garnet + opal halo ring, a 1930s band inscribed "Amor Vincit Omnia" (love conquers all, also from my husband), and a ring I made from a Georgian garnet lace pin I added a hand-carved 18k band and foil back aquamarine to.
Snakes! (l-r) A French Art Deco gold and diamond snake, Victorian garnet + opal snake from @heartofsolidgold, and a Victorian garnet snake scored from Ebay (!), which I wear every day.
"My antique ring collection is still growing - I have about 40 antique rings total, though to be honest I mostly just wear a few favorites daily. I've been collecting pieces my whole life, but really only seriously for about 3-4 years."
Above: Turquoise dreams (l-r): An Art Deco 22k pinky ring, 18k + Persian turquoise Late Victorian band from @_butterlaneantiques, an American Victorian turquoise ring, and a ring I made from a Victorian square-cut turquoise + old-cut diamond horseshoe pin.
Love Gold! (l-r): 1920s 18k "William Tell" signet from @_butterlaneantiques, 14k gold + sapphire class ring circa 1917 (my grandmother's birth year), a Victorian 18k + diamond Gypsy Ring, and a hand-sawn 1946 Half Penny pyramid ring made by my very dear + talented friend @racheleardleysomerset, whose work reminds me that you can still be a quality maker in today's world.
"The best story I have about a personal piece would have to be the one behind this funny Edwardian Sapphire and Diamond ring I inherited. My friends and I refer to it as "The Cat Eye Mask" ring because that's what it reminds us of. My mom found it in the bottom of a box full of trash in my grandfather’s apartment, right before he died. It almost got thrown away! She gave it to me a few years ago and I rarely wear it, but I would never sell it because I just think I was meant to own it. My cousin and best friend even wore it in her wedding as her “something blue,” just in case the good luck attached to it rubs off."
Above: The infamous "Cat Eye Mask" Edwardian diamond + sapphire ring that was rescued from the trash, in its original box.
"My favorite places to treasure hunt are with special dealers I have met over the years and love to hang out with and buy things from here in New York City. I also try to make the trip to London when I can to visit friends and shop at Portobello road at least once a year. As far as non-secret spots, I love Etsy – there are beautiful, quality pieces there at all price points, and a lot of really cool new handmade stuff as well. The Pier Antique Shows in Manhattan are great, too, and open to the public – I recommend going with a friend or two for second opinions! I personally always try to shop with at least one of my girls: Jenn (@bellflowerbay) and Christy (@this_is_ferro) – they’re my posse, and I can barely make decisions without them! As far as brick-and-morter stores, my favorite is Metier in San Francisco – they’re tiny but perfectly stocked with old and new; I always try to pop in while I’m in town!"
Above: My collection of agates (l-r): A Victorian dendritic agate ring from @decemberanchor, an 18k bloodstone intaglio "A" ring I got years ago on Ebay, an amazing Victorian bloodstone statement ring from Metier SF, an Art Deco moss agate dinner ring from Ruby Lane, a 1920s banded agate stunner from @eriecanalcollectors, and my first Instagram purchase - a Victorian moss agate ring from my friend Lauren of @agelessheirlooms.
Above: Part of my collection of silver bracelets (top to bottom): a coin souvenir bracelet from all the countries my filmmaker grandfather visited, made for my mom when she was a child, a vintage sterling silver buckle bracelet, a vintage Taxco Mexican silver buckle bracelet, a Victorian sterling Albertina watch chain bracelet (each individual link is hallmarked!).
"My dream piece? This is tricky – I want so many antique gems, the list is a mile long! I guess if I had to settle on something, it would be the Hermes Boucle Sellier silver bracelet. They reissued a huge version of it three or four years ago, and I’m totally obsessed. I have a vintage Chain d'Ancre (one of the early, super heavy ones) that I inherited from my grandmother, and have since built a stack of beautiful Indian and Mexican sterling bracelets around it, that I wear constantly. My dream has always been to be one of those fabulous old ladies with bracelets up to my elbows, and that bracelet is definitely a piece that I feel like I really NEED to complete my collection. I was visiting the jeweler who apprenticed me not long ago, and he was polishing one for a private client. I was completely transfixed and could not stop staring until he finally let me try it on. All I could think was, “Could I make it out the door in time?” but that thing is so heavy, it would probably drag me down as I ran off with it!"
Above: The two prizes of my bracelet collection: A vintage Hermes sterling silver chaine d'ancre bracelet I inherited, and a vintage 14k + diamond curb chain I bought to celebrate an accomplishment.
I'll be the first to say, Venice, Italy needs to be on everyone's travel destination itinerary! The beauty of the picturesque stone streets, little shops, incredible restaurants and gondola-filled canals will have you feeling like you're in a painting. I spent about six hours in Venice and I'm aching to go back (photo of Venice taken my me below). When I was there, most shops were closed except a few souvenir shops. I wish I would've gotten a chance to swing by Eredi Jovon Jewelry located in Venice--a family-owned shop which specializes in Italian cameos and portrait cameos. Every cameo sold there is hand-carved by Marco and his family! I love the jewelry cases inside their shop--filled to the brim with amazing treasures, ready to be brought back from travels; a keepsake to remember your Venetian trip.
I had to know more about this significant store, so I got to ask Marco Jovon some questions!
>> Check out their website.
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>> E-book available mid-November, click here.
I’ve always deal with beauty and quality and I can’t split any product from its real value. Friederich Nietsche was known to say that you can know the price of everything (just looking at a label or at the tag), but you need to really understand a value of one thing to appreciate it. This is my philosophy too! I’m 100% Italian and I support quality and Italian-made products. My idea of business is give to people something they can be proud of and happy to wear. It's not enough only to get their money, they must be aware they made the right choice.
My grandfather started the business in 1934, he was a good craftsman and artist for cameos. In 1961, the shop passed down to the hands of my father. He expanded the business to include corals and his customers consisted of people like Ernest Hemingway, Pope Joan XXIII, actors and actresses of Hollywood! In 1998 my father passed away and the shop became mine ... it’s a three-generation family business, still focused on our core business: cameos!
We are the only shop in the world where a customer can bring a picture of a daughter, son, relative, or a pet and we can create a completely handmade cameo unique and one-of-a-kind! We are very proud of this because it’s something that gives customers the “added value” of our company and philosophy.
Venice is the most special place in the world, built on the water: it’s a delicate aged lady that needs to be respected and loved, everyone that wants to reduce Venice at his own idea has not understood Venice (no cars, no rush, no big mall, not big spaces). Yes, no cars!
I hold myself a cameo collection (my small private museum) that show different kinds of cameos. I’m actually writing an e-book on cameos that will be possible to download for the people that will join my special newsletter--the e-book will be ready in November, and free for the people subscribed to my newsletter. To subscribe, click here.
From September 5th-9th, 2015 VicenzaOro opened its innovative doors to more than 20,000 buyers, press and others from the jewelry industry of over 120 different countries and the excitement spread throughout the 4-day event. My first-time ever at this show, I was unaware of what to expect and actually made sure not to research too much into the show so that I could experience it as organically as possible!
I learned quite quickly as day one began with a Press Conference held by Matteo Marzotto, President of Fiera di Vicenza and Corrado Facco, Managing Director of Fiera di Vicenza, articulating how much of a forward-thinking tradeshow VicenzaOro is with two strategic thinkers at the helm of it all. VicenzaOro is not just a tradeshow--it is an entire unit consisting of a website, social media channels, show guides, an official app., newsletters, a host of seminars, workshops and exclusive events, as well as conferences, network meetings, etc. VicenzaOro also has its own magazine, VO+, and a branch which forecasts trends called TRENDVISION which recently debuted a book called Trendbook 2017+ at the show. The book delves into upcoming jewelry trends and creates labels for different types of consumers in a visually sensual hardcover book. It is truly a collector's item and beautifully done! VicenzaOro has also created its own awards show--the Andrea Palladio International Jewellery Awards (more on that later) and a young jewelry talent contest called Next Jeneration. So, as you can see, MUCH more than just a jewelry show!
The U.S. Press team consisting of myself, Tanya Dukes of InStore Magazine, Jen C. Williams of Luxury Brand Group, Natalie of Jewels du Jour, and Amanda Gizzi of Jewelers of America spent three full days buzzing around the show floor. The setup and organization of the jewelry show is fairly new, just launched last January and features six "communities" within this jewelry city of a show. A wheel of colors helps signify and represent each of the six groups--ICON, CREATION & LOOK (jewelry districts focusing on jewelry, both small and large companies, trendy section called Glamroom), ESSENCE (gemstones, manufacturing, components, chains, clasps, etc), EXPRESSION (packaging and visual merchandising), and EVOLUTION (a place where I got lost several times).
Besides the layout, what struck me the most was walking into the show and realizing that every jewelry designer/brand has created their own miniature version of a store. Their visual branding is far more sophisticated than any show I've ever been to! Some designers had small windows where jewelry was displayed, and then you could walk into their booth where they had private tables/chairs set up for buyers/clients. Definitely not your average backdrop plus display case only.
Highlights of the show for me were:
Visiting the Pasquale Bruni booth and seeing the diamond crescent moon man pendant, trying on pieces from their Bon Ton collection, getting the wear the earrings that Alessandra Ambrosio recently wore the week before, and meeting Eugenia Bruni--creative director of Pasquale Bruni.
Getting to meet Beppe Callegari of Otto Jewels and seeing his full collection in person, rather than online! Such a fun up-and-coming line that is playful and affordable!
Spotting Roberto Bravo on the back cover of the VicenzaOro show directory and having to find them at the show! I love their houndstooth collection which uses the technique of hot enameling with the houndstooth pattern and displaying it on multiple designs.
Falling for Vianna B.R.A.S.I.L. and her bold gemstone designs--lots of color and lots of flair. I was bowled over by the insane necklace I tried on featuring lots of colorful tourmalines and diamonds. Her paraiba tourmaline pieces were electrifying.
Playing with the artistically enchanting and whimsical designs of Wendy Yue. Her long, finger-covering rings are what I live for!! The darkened metal also makes everything stand out.
Getting to meet Roberto Coin and work with his team taking some pictures and learning of his multiple collections. His animal pieces are insane!
Discovering Casato and getting to try on their edgy pieces--love their inspirations and every diamond piece they create! All made in Rome, Italy.
Seeing Yoko London's game-changing use of pearls! They are taking pearls to a whole new level and it was fun getting to see and try on their creations.
Finding an Italian jeweler to make the new top-spot of my wish list: Gabriella Rivalta who hand-paints each piece. I want one of her white tiger pieces!
Stopping in my tracks after seeing such a cool piece by Marco Dal Maso of Marco Ta Moko Jewelry who is redefining men's jewelry. He has created a lapel pin featuring an Afro Man with beads of precious stones as hair. It is the coolest thing!
>> Thank you VicenzaOro for taking care of our stay in order to attend the show!
VO+ magazine, Italy's own Vincenzaoro publication that goes hand-in-hand with the Internationally renowned gold show, has done a feature on Gem Gossip, which I was excited to share my views on the jewelry world, from my point of view!
The best part about my first piece of International press is that it is in Italian, which my grandma will be so proud of! Can't wait to get her a copy!
In the meantime, here is my article that I wrote and you can also read it on Issuu below:
I like to think that my love for jewelry has been eminent since I could remember. At age four, I was begging my mom to take me to get my ears pierced, with a secret wish list of different earrings I would buy once my ears healed. When six years ago I've started my blog, I would feature things that were on my wish list, like eternity bands, and show examples of some of my favorites. Antique jewelry was a budding obsession for me, so at first my posts were simple with learning the basics of collecting antique pieces, their value and authenticity, with a general draw towards Art Deco filigree rings and lots of old cut diamonds. Today antique jewelry is a huge topic in my life and on my blog, personally I am constantly on "the hunt" for my next big find traveling across the USA and even overseas to London. Visiting antique jewelry stores and getting an inside look is a side I love sharing with my readers. Last year, I ventured to London and went on an antique jewelry treasure hunt with two other collectors. Readers love connecting with me over my personal finds and many have gone to the same places I went to, solely because of my blog. There are so many aspects of antique jewelry that I love and adore, and with my taste continually changing, I have come to collect some extremely specific kinds of rings. Victorian jewelry in particular is very romantic and sentimental, garnering lots of attention from collectors and myself alike. I think antique jewelry has exponentially grown in the past few years in terms of popularity, with so much more of a demand for one-of-a-kind items. An area that is benefiting from this boom is jewelry auction houses. These auction houses span the globe, and I enjoy treasure hunting by browsing their catalogs. Some of my favorite jewelry designers currently are HOORSENBUHS, Andrea Fohrman, Holly Dyment, Arik Kastan, and Elisa Solomon. I love discovering new, up-and-coming designers, like Amanda Hunt, Communion by Joy, and Kimberlin Brown. Sometimes Gem Gossip is the home of the first piece of press for jewelry designers just starting out, and I am happy to spread the news of their talent.
Since seeing the collection at Couture this year in Las Vegas, I’ve been continually obsessed with coin jewelry. The history behind each coin that 1884 Collection uses within their jewelry designs is intriguing and combines two aspects of jewelry into one. Synthesizing antique with modern is a largely difficult task to pull off in the jewelry world, and these ancient coins set in modern, shiny settings is done impeccably well. The exclusivity aspect is pretty high for 1884 Collection, since every piece is one-of-a-kind, using ancient coins each having their own story. From when and where it dates back, to how it survived along its journey, to its current location on your finger or hanging around your neck!
Talking with founder and designer Alberto Petochi only solidifies more as to why this collection is so coveted. He explains how each Roman coin is over 2,000 years old and was used for currency in Italy, with 18k yellow gold being an important metal used as the basis for many of his designs. And each design is as timeless as the coin that is at the center of it all. A jewelry line that infuses history, Italian heritage and beauty all in one, I just can’t get enough of 1884 Collection!
MADDALENA COLLECTION - The Maddalena Archipelago, known for its pristine waters and natural beauty, offers a mesmerizing backdrop for this new collection. Shown are the necklace and earrings in 18k yellow gold.
BURANO COLLECTION - Named as one of the most colorful cities of the world, the Burano collection takes direct inspiration from the multi-colored houses that populate this small fishing village. Shown are the ancient coin rings with a halo of diamonds set in 18k rose gold and/or yellow gold.
RAVELLO COLLECTION - A shelter against the barbarian invasions, the scenic hill town of Ravello, situated on the Amalfi Coast, marked the end of the Western Roman Empire. A place of battle and a test of strength, the Ravello collection exudes this direct sense of power and edge. Taking the finest materials of 18K gold and diamonds and juxtaposing them with spiked designs, the collection itself dares you to stand out. Shown are the cufflinks and necklace, with the spiked details.
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