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Entries in jewelry collection (42)

My Jewel Box: Trikona Ring from Krysos + Chandi #LoveGold 

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There's nothing more perfect than a gold ring that can transform your jewelry wardrobe by being able to mix and match with what you already have.  The Trikona ring by Krysos + Chandi is the best example I have come across! You can call it a "crown" or a "zig zag" or even a "golden squiggle" but whatever you think it looks like, you will be surprised at how many different ways you can wear it!  

The Trikona ring is a custom piece, done in 14k yellow gold, made in NYC.  The design is a contemporary celebration of the geometric mysticism of the triangle.  The pointy shape is very on-point (no pun intended) with fashion and as well as design. I used six different rings of my own to play with to create different looks with my two Trikona rings.  Rings I used:

 

  • a 14k wide black enamel band
  • a 14k gold prong set turquoise band
  • several paper thin 14k gold bands
  • a 14k gold circular eternity band
  • an 18k gold X-pattern cut-out band
  • my Brian Brundage double marquise diamond ring in 14k gold

 

After playing for hours, we set out for a fun photoshoot located at a haunted Confederate cemetery from the Civil War.  We thought we surely would be spooked, but luckily a class of 5-6 year olds was busy touring the area, and kept us from losing our cool.  Across from the cemetery is a mansion that served as a makeshift hospital during the Battle of Franklin, tending to more than 300 wounded soldiers, with estimates of about 2,500 dead from that battle alone.  The stark white fence that encircled the plantation was an abrupt symbol to all that went down 150 years ago...but acted as the perfect backdrop to some bright golden rings.  We took the last few snapshots and made sure to leave before the sun got too low!  Here's to Halloween and stacking rings!

 

This post was brought to you in collaboration with LoveGold

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Jewelry Collection Stories: The Girls of Gray & Davis

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The girls of Gray & Davis love antique jewelry and working in the heart of NYC's diamond district, they get to experience the hustle and bustle of the fast-paced jewelry world each and every day!  With the company's torch being passed on to these girls, the shop is shining brighter than ever...but before Gray retired, she gifted each with a special piece from her personal collection.  So happy to share each with you:

 

We could tell you a story about each piece of jewelry we own personally; whom it came from, the occasion we received it and maybe even that person who wore it before us.  When Gem Gossip asked us to share some jewels from our personal collections, all three of us were decidedly sure which pieces we would like to talk about.

47th Street is a bit of a boy’s club, so when our founder, Gray Boone, started Gray & Davis over a decade ago, she immediately stood out in a good way. Armed with an inexhaustible knowledge of antique jewelry and old-fashioned southern charm, her tiny booth quickly became a favorite shop for New York City collectors and couples. She was more than a boss to us, she was our mentor. She taught us about the historical relevance of jewelry, how crucial it is to stand by your word in this industry, and the importance of appreciating not just antique diamonds but also Berlin Iron, jewelry made of woven hair, and paste demi parures. She expanded our interests; things that didn’t feel precious at first became the most storied. Now, we love it all!

Gray retired last year, and it was her wish that Gray & Davis be carried on. Before she left she chose and gifted each of us a piece from her personal stash of treasure.

We knew how much these pieces meant to her and we are flattered and honored to have them in our own collections.  Wearing these pieces will forever remind us of Gray. She instilled in us a need to collect and preserve antiquities and a desire to share them. We are grateful for our founder/mentor for all the lessons, opportunities, and yes of course the jewels, too :)

 

Ali’s whimsical Victorian 18K yellow gold earrings set with rhodolite garnets and fringe! They still look funky and fun over 130 years after they were made.  Crazy earrings are an antique dealer’s staple. 

Laura’s awesome 1920’s long cut-steel tassel necklace. It’s easy to imagine this glittering necklace going out for a night on the town in Jazz-age New York or on present day Laura, whose height and monochromatic color palate are well suited. 

Anna’s pair of 19th century bangle bracelets.  Talk about wild! These are hard to put into words, flat gold disks atop oxidized silver coils, perfectly esoteric for a soon-to-be Master in the History of Decorative Arts.  

>> To read about my visit to Gray & Davis, click here.


Jewelry Collection Stories: Xiao Wang

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"To me there's something very mysterious and magical about antique jewelry, they have so much history and stories to tell." Xiao Wang says jewelry is in her DNA. With an incredibly popular jewelry line just recently launched, a modeling career and love for fashion--not to mention some cute chihuahua babies, she has a fun and fabulous life living in NYC. But what came before all this? A deep love for antique jewelry! She has been collecting for six years, and coincidently that is how old Gem Gossip is, which she has been a fan of since the beginning! We've emailed each other years ago, I even have a Victorian ring from her collection. Finally getting a chance to meet at Couture this year was such a great experience and long time coming! Xiao even came to check out the Doyle & Doyle event, where she reconnected her love for antique jewelry after focusing on designing her new collections. It was fun showing her more from my personal collection!

With New York City being her home, it is easily also her favorite place to treasure hunt. The Chelsea Showplace antique center is one of her top choices, which hosts private "galleries" open to the public seven days a week, located on 25th Street. Xiao also has luck traveling to Upstate New York to find antique treasures.

Antique rings from every time period are key pieces in her personal collection, and she loves a good brooch! The cute rooster is not only a part of her collection, but a great inspiration to her new designs.  "The Lavalier pendant in velvet box, I loved it when I saw it and purchased it right away, when I was paying for it I asked the seller if the blue stone was a sapphire, he and I both took a look under the loop and we both noticed it changed colors, turns out it was an alexandrite!"  This is proof of what all antique jewelry collectors are tuned into--the thrill of the hunt and not knowing what you'll find next!

Thanks for sharing your personal antique jewelry collection, Xiao Wang.  To check out her jewelry designs, head over to her website.  All photos by Tiff Pemberton.  

Jewelry Collection Stories: The Eden Collective

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Many of you know my love for The Eden Collective, an Etsy shop on-point with each and every piece she posts. The more I've gotten to know Eden, the more I realized what a true collector she really is!  A collector since the age of seven, Eden tagged along with her father to auctions and flea markets.  She bought her first ring at a very young age, with the help of some birthday money--a sterling Navajo ring with heart shaped turquoise--and has been hooked ever since (she even still has the ring!)  Her phases of collections were quite fun--a bakelite bracelet phase where she has two boot boxes under her bed with bracelets that she never wears but can't seem to get rid of, a Mexican silver phase, a deco filigree phase ...continuous with a Victorian and Georgian phase.  Collecting jewelry has been somewhat constant for her, with most of her income going toward pretty, shiny things.  A job in college next to a jeweler led to a running tab and lots of hard work.  

Of all the places, flea markets are what gets Eden going--the mere mention of the word, and she becomes instantly happy.  She makes it a point to seek one out every where she travels, with a few of her favorites being Hong Kong, India, Mexico, Amsterdam, Barcelona, Morocco, Italy and of course coast to coast USA--and surprisingly she has never been to Brimfield, which is on her list!

Here are some highlights of her personal collection--none of which are for sale--but she does have an incredible Etsy shop (The Eden Collective) which is a must to add on the Favorites list.  


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1. Victorian hand painted miniature portrait worn as bracelet: 14k, old mine cut diamonds, reverses to painting of the little girl’s mother

2. 40s honeycomb belt bracelet: 18k & platinum, brilliant cut diamonds

3. Victorian slide collection bracelet: mix of 10k and 14k slides with enamel, rubies, diamonds, opals, pearls & turquoise

4. Edwardian “X” bangle: 14k yellow gold, rose cut diamonds, opals

gg7

1. Victorian micro-mosaic ring: 18k with landscape scene mosaic inset in onyx

2. Early Victorian mourning ring: 18k, enamel, foiled garnet, “in Memory of” in stations around band, engraved on interior

3. Victorian hairwork faith, hope and charity ring: 10k, hair

4. Georgian foiled garnet band: garnets, 18k

5. Vintage witches heart midi ring: 14k

6. Victorian Bohemian garnet ring: 14k shank, gilt metal stone mounting, garnets

7. Victorian micro mosaic: 14k, Roman ruins mosaic set in onyx

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1. Victorian converted brooch ring: 14k, mine cut and rose cut diamonds

2. Vintage snake midi: 14k, ruby eyes

3. Early Victorian snake ring: 14k, mine cut diamond, ruby eyes

4. Victorian snake ring: 14k, mine cut diamonds

5. Victorian stick pin conversion pinky ring: 10k, mine cut diamond, ceylon sapphire

6. Victorian snake wrap bracelet: 18k, mine cut diamond

7. 22kt and diamond polki bangle

8. 22kt and diamond polki bangle

9. Victorian snake wrap bracelet: 14k, ruby eyes

*a fun anecdote from Eden about #3 snake ring: "About 15 years ago at my favorite down and dirty flea market- not an antique market but the kind of place where people bring what they cleaned out of their garage, I bought an old sewing box filled with buttons and bits of lace and trims, etc. There was an ancient rusty Sucrets tin in the box that I could not open because it was so rusted but since it was relatively light weight and nothing moved when I shook it, I figured was empty..  I think: maybe someday I’ll try to open it, so throw it back in the box with the buttons. Literally 10 years go by and I’m cleaning out my studio.. decide, since I never found a use for anything in that box, to throw it in a bag to give to Goodwill. Something, I don't know what because I’ve ignored it for 10 years, gets under my skin about that Sucrets tin….  one screw driver and 15 mins later I’ve destroyed the poor thing but the lid is off. Inside is a folded up piece of tissue and inside the tissue is the snake ring."

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1. Victorian mourning bracelet: 14k and enamel, drop is 14k and jet with seed pearls engraved on back “Gertrude”

2. Victorian mourning bangle: 14k and enamel with seed pearls

3. Georgian bracelet: 18k, foiled rock crystal, silk velvet ribbon

4. Victorian Albertina watch chain bracelet: 14k, jet

5. Victorian mourning bangle: 14k, enamel, seed pearls

gg5

1. 50s hand painted miniature portrait ring: 14k, seed pearls

2. Victorian amethyst converted brooch ring: 18k, amethyst, seed pearls

3. Victorian baby signet midi ring: 10k

4. Victorian baby ring midi: 10k

5. Victorian bypass pinky ring: 14k, rose cut diamonds, natural pearls

6. Victorian love knot bracelet: 14k, mine cut diamond

7. Georgian amethyst bracelet: 15k, amethyst

8. Edwardian bangle: gold-filled, amethyst glass

9. Edwardian bangle: 10k, amethyst

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1. Georgian sepia miniature ring: our own conversion of a brooch, 14k, rock crystal, paste, ivory

2. Georgian 18k & rose cut diamond ring

3. Georgian mourning ring midi : 18k, macerated hair painted “B” on mother of pearl

4. Art Deco 14k carved wedding band midi

5. Art Deco Platinum & diamond eternity band

4. Georgian mine cut diamond ring in silver pinch mounting on 18k band

5. Art Deco 14k diamond eternity band

6. Art Deco platinum and diamond “scroll” band

7. Victorian insect ring: 14k, silver, garnet, rose cut diamonds

gg2

1. Stuart crystal clasp on Victorian curb link bracelet: 20kt ( thereabouts), rock crystal, hair, engraved on the back “J.S. dy. June 1740 age 4 yrs. 6 mos.”

2. 14k white gold diamond line bracelet

3. Victorian gold-filled curb link bracelet

4. Edwardian 10k bangle

5. Victorian 9k “chain” bangle

6 Edwardian 10k engraved bangle

gg9

1. 60s cocktail ring: 14k, lapis, pave diamonds

2. 60s mouse ring: 14k, lapis, ruby eyes, pave diamonds

3. 80s 14k hammered gold ring

4. 70s bracelet: 14k, lapis, coral, pave diamonds

5. 70s pendant attached to bracelet: 14k lapis, coral, pave diamonds

 

The Life of a Collector: Inside the Mind of Gem Gossip

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It's 5am.  Your alarm you've titled "Get Up, It's JEWEL-TIME" sounds off and you quickly fling yourself out of bed. You can barely open your eyes, but you easily type in your username and password and get ready to go head-to-head with buyers who are actually at the auction house which you've just virtually logged into, bidding live somewhere in England.  

Yes, that is a normal week day in the life of an avid-obsessed collector.  A jewelry collector, that is...and to be even more specific--antique rings.  These little, sometimes sparkly, golden hoops of joy.  I can't imagine anything else that I feel so much allure for--the charm and temptation is overwhelming at times.  How can something so unnecessary be so...well, NECESSARY?!  

And since you collect antique rings, you've got that annoying saying, "wow when will I ever see one like that ever again?!  I need it!"  

From one morning bidding session, to another.  I frantically check eBay and my "Watch" list gets longer and longer.  I spend over an hour browsing and realize I shouldn't be spending, rather $aving... So, I've devised my own Savings plan--cut back on what I spend most on, FOOD.  I decide on a new meal plan called, "whatever is in the refrigerator."  A couple handfuls of scredded cheese, a scoop of peanut butter and some leftover walnuts in the pantry.  That should hold me over.  

An hour goes by and I realize that is the worst plan ever.  I then take matters into my own hands and delete my eBay application from my iPhone.  There!  No more bidding.

So where did this undying love for jewelry come from?  I try to think back to when I was little and I do have some fond memories of playing in my mom's jewelry boxes.  Most of her stuff was costume jewelry, but I loved draping on necklaces and piling on bracelets.  My paternal grandmother loved jewelry and still does today.  She would travel to Italy when I was little, and come back with a piece of jewelry for everyone.  I remember being so excited every time she came back from Italy, I always would wonder what she brought back for me. One time it was a heart charm, another time it was a gold bracelet...I still have each piece of 18k Italian gold. Now, my maternal grandmother...it was her that I know I got the collecting bug from!  It is almost a borderline collector/hoarder.  She collected lots of things--owls, wolves, teapots, trains, miniature houses (which she formed an entire mini-city), tin boxes, plates...I know there's more.  The best part of her collecting, which I definitely inherited, was the way she displayed things.  Her small cabin in the woods was basically a mini-museum.  It was so fun to look at each thing and she loved going to garage sales, which was where she bought most of her collectibles.  She now lives in a small townhouse, which she has shelving throughout the entire house in order to display her enormous teapot collection.  

As a collector, I think my favorite things consist of:

1. finding new hidden places, full of the coolest/neatest antique jewelry

2. finding others that share my obsession and talking with them

3. planning my next adventure/buying my next acquisition

So, no matter how broke I become or how much sleep I lose over these little things we call Rings, I have never had an inanimate object bring so much happiness, purpose and drive to my life.  I will always have a memory or story behind each and every one.  And I will continue to collect, and venture to far away places in search of new pieces to add to my special collection.  

Happy collecting!