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Entries in jewelry collection (38)

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!  

 

My Jewel Box: Victorian Trefoil Ring from Verlaine Davies' Collection

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I've recently added an amazing piece to my ring collection and am still freaking out about it.  If you're an avid jewelry reader and book fan, you have Verlaine Davies' book Rings 1800-1910: A Study of English & Related Designs in your collection (if you don't, you NEED it).  Well, a few years ago I got the opportunity to interview her for Gem Gossip--read the interview here.  We recently reconnected and to my surprise, a couple of the rings featured in her book are for sale.  My chance to own a piece from one of my favorite jewelry books happened to strike, and I feel so honored to have it now a part of my collection!  

In the book, Ms. Davies features about 300 Victorian rings from her personal collection, which she has collected over the span of 30 years.  Her travels to England and being a native of England have helped grow her collection, as some of the finest examples of that time period are from England.  I love how the book features photos of the rings, which then in turn, help illustrate different parts, motifs, styles, and examples of turn-of-the-century rings. Such a good read!  

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My ring is featured on page 63, with the caption reading:

Fig 154. Trefoil bezel comprising round amethysts, with a seed pearl in the centre and one in the stem. Thick round wire hoop, transverse ribs on shoulders. Rose gold. American, circa 1895. Bezel diamond 10mm, hoop diameter 16mm.

Top Five Essential Pieces of Gold Jewelry #LoveGold

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Lately I’ve been helping a few clients out with their jewelry collections.  This task came about on a whim, not planning it or advertising it, just kind of stumbled upon something I thoroughly enjoy.  It basically goes down like this: a tired jewelry box is handed over to me, and I go through the items along with the client.  We get rid of the “junk” and sort through real vs. faux.  We discuss ways of reinventing some old pieces that never get worn and gather the items that need repairs (missing stones and broken chains, etc).  I clean the rest of the “keepers” and evaluate the jewelry box.  Within the evaluation, I come up with some suggestions of key pieces to possibly purchase for a better, overall jewelry box, along with some examples.  

I’ve put together my top five essential pieces of gold jewelry that I’ve continually suggested.  So if your jewelry box is in need of a makeover, make sure you at least have these pieces to get you started! 

  1. Bold gold link bracelet: Gold bracelets can come in many different link styles.  Browse around and find one that speaks to you. My essential gold link bracelet in my personal collection comes from Italy brought back by my grandparents when I was younger.  The Italians can make a gorgeous bracelet. 
  2. Classic stackable bands: several dainty, stackable bands are good to have in your jewelry box.  Bands that allow you to mix and match, creating several different looks.  My personal collection has a variety, including some with and without gemstones.
  3. An interesting/conversation worthy antique piece: this could be a family heirloom or an antique piece you went out yourself and purchased.  Something that tells a story, something that has a hidden message, or maybe an engraving written in Latin...?  Anything that has a unique gemstone or enamel work is a great example.  Special motifs--like a crowned heart--tell a story ("I give you my heart and I crown it with my loyalty." ) I have an anchor pendant that I sometimes wear on a long gold necklace.  What is interesting about it is that it is made out of hair!  It is Victorian and baffles anyone that I ever tell!
  4. Everyday stud earrings: Most people tend to wear stud earrings, and having a pair that are your signature studs is important to have!  Are you a pearl stud kind of girl? Or more into diamond studs?  Find a pair that you love and make the purchase.  If you want to be edgy, you can always change up the classics--like go for an emerald cut diamond pair rather than the typical round cut.  In my personal collection, I wear a pair of diamond “X’s” almost everyday.  
  5. An incredibly indulgent splurge item: everyone deserves to splurge on one item, whether it be a ring or a pair of earrings, something that gets your heart racing!  Think about your closet--do you own a pair of shoes or a handbag that is over-the-top?  Well, your jewelry box needs a luxury item too!  In my personal collection I have a Cleopatra-inspired necklace done in 18k yellow gold.  When I wear it, I feel like Elizabeth Taylor.

Above examples of my top five jewelry essentials:

18k Yellow Gold Gucci Lion Head Link Bracelet, from FD via 1stdibs, Price: $6000

Barbara Heinrich Assorted Gemstone 18k Gold Stacking Rings, 1stdibs, Price Upon Request

19th Century 18k Yellow Gold French Portrait Ring, from Pennisi via 1stdibs, Price $5300

22k Yellow Gold Pear-shaped Diamond studs, Julius Cohen via 1stdibs, Price: $8800

18k Yellow Gold Diamond Stripe Ring by LFrank, 1stdibs, Price: $6400

 

This post was brought to you in collaboration with LoveGold

 

 

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