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Entries in victorian ring (16)

My Jewel Box: Dendritic Agate Rings from My Pennsylvania Road Trip

Gem Gossip Jewel Box

I kind of fell in love with dendritic agate while I was out in Pennsylvania on my road trip--not sure if it was due to the rolling hills or the amount of land free of buildings that I encountered while there, but it was abundant. The first one that started it all is the rectangular ring spotted while visiting the MaeJean Vintage sisters in Lancaster, Pennsylvania.  The girls had so much eye candy to look at, but for some reason that ring was calling my name. It also should be said that my friend Jenn of @bellflowerbay was texting me the night before showing me her new moss agate ring, and she had mentioned that I didn't have any myself (says a girl who knows my jewelry box just as much as her own ;)) And she was right!  I love moss and dendritic agates, just never focused in on finding any or none have struck me enough to buy. 

The rectangular dendritic agate ring decided to come home with me from MaeJean Vintage, but not without getting some interesting info that the sisters dug up about the piece! I love how passionate both Amanda and Laura are--they don't just attain an inventory and sell it, they understand it, research it and teach others. There's a lot to be said by treating your business this way and so much more growth comes out of it. The girls noticed a few extra letters after the 10k hallmark on the ring.  The letters M S followed 10k which piqued their interest--they had to find out what that M S stood for!  After researching, they found that M S stands for the firm Miller-Steinau which was based in Portland, Oregon and specialized in jewelry made from genuine moss agate, petrified wood, & rock crystal quartz. How cool!

The next day I was on the road again, this time headed to Grove City, PA. When you walk into Joden Jewelers, you immediately realize you haven't planned enough time for all the amazingness that is in one store. I was right. After touring the store and trying on tons of jewelry, speaking with the owner Joe and listening to his fun stories, I had only a couple spare minutes to make some tough decisions--what to bring home with me?!  My dendritic agate kick kept going, as I chose two more--these though had different shapes, one elongated oval and the other a skinny navette that was very long.  It wasn't until I was in the car headed back home to Tennesse that I realized all three rings had the exact same shoulders.  Could it be, they were all made by the same company--that company in Portland, Oregon?!  Turns out the elonged navette also says 10k M S but the other does not.  The oval is stamped 10k on both sides of the ring, which I find odd, and the font is totally different. 

These rings are definitely interesting and fun to wear.  I especially love how they are easy to access, as they aren't hard to find out there and are inexpensive for fine jewelry. I think it is important to buy a moss or dendritic agate that has a cool and unique pattern of inclusions.  Thanks MaeJean Vintage and Joden Jewelers for the newest members of my personal collection!


Jewelry Collection Stories: @LuckandLockets

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Today we take a look into the jewelry box of @LuckandLockets to see her favorite treasures and the stories behind them!  I love her attitude on her collection and if you think you can't collect antique jewelry because you live either a busy life or live nowhere near an antique jewelry shop, think again!  She has done most all her shopping through Instagram alone and has created quite the collection!  I'm sure you'll notice all our jewelry friends represented in her collection!  Enjoy!

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Collecting antique jewelry takes patience, a roving eye and a lot of time!  I work full time in crazy hectic NYC and have a family, too, so there isn't a whole lot of down time to treasure hunt (trust me -- try dragging a 10 year old boy and a husband to the antiques stores while on vacation!)  So, what a godsend that so many amazing antique jewelry vendors sell online, open 24/7.  It wasn't so long ago that it was a novelty to buy fine antique jewelry online -- all without seeing or feeling it in person, from a seller thousands of miles away.   An article I read in Vogue a few years ago opened a whole new world of antiquing possibilities to me -- it was precisely about the growing numbers of women who were investing in jewelry for themselves – buying over the internet!  I was sold and have not looked back.

I search for pieces that are "niche" -- rare and unusual in some way, yet wearable in the real world (I love a tiara as much as Lady Mary, but no-can-do on NYC subways!)  Georgian pieces are wonderful and romantic, because they pre-date mass production and I love the handcrafted and "imperfect."  I also adore figural pieces, and anything with a message or story.  The web has been a great way to source unusual pieces from home --after the work emails are done, dinner dishes washed and child is in bed!  And when I found Instagram, I was hooked!  In fact, I have found some of my favorite pieces through my IG feed -- from an amazing community of antique jewelry enthusiasts, who share a similar aesthetic and passion (and who happen to ferret out unique pieces from their sources).  

Here are some of the rings I found through my IG feeds – representative of some of my favorite motifs and materials -- and I think many of them are definitely one of a kind!  

From left to right:

Thumb:  (Bottom) Georgian enameled memorial ring, inscribed 1806 … from @shopfiligree.  I love the modern, austere vibe of this ring, even though it is over 200 years old.  This is my go-to stacker.  

(Top) Art Nouveau “Night and Day” signet ring . . . from @eriebasin.  The gold on this ring has that wonderful, soft, velvety texture that only comes with age.  The surprise to this ring?  Each shoulder is carved with a distinct Art Nouveau "maiden" --  one has her eyes closed in sleep (Night) and the other is wide-eyed (Day).  I am not engraving this one -- it just seems perfect and pristine the way it is.

First Finger:  (Bottom) Mid-Victorian green-eyed snake ring in rare 16k . . . from @theedencollective.  Every antique ring collection needs at least one snake.  I picked this one for its detail and dimensional quality -- its head is rearing up, and a tiny tongue is just visible in its parted mouth.   A little creepy, in a good way.

(Top)  Late Georgian-era French ring set with fat, juicy foiled garnets . . . from @theoneilovenyc.  The color of these stones is incredible, and the foil has remained intact all these years.  One of my all time favorites.   

Middle Finger:  (Bottom) Art Nouveau-era ring set with the most incredible turquoise scarab . . . from @duvenay.  No other way to put this, but I LOOOVE this ring for its bold scale, handmade setting and of course that soft, dreamy turquoise.  This stone came from the Porterfield Turquoise Mines in New Mexico, owned at the time by the family of @duvenay.  I feel honored to wear this cherished piece.  

(Top) Victorian hard stone cameo of Mary Queen of Scots (a favorite of mine) ornately framed . . . again from @duvenay.  This ring is a little crazytown, right up my alley -- probably an old conversion.  It's chunky, but feminine because, well, it's a cameo!

Ring Finger:  (Bottom) OK, it's not easy to pick a single favorite, but this could be IT.  Victorian elephant carnelian intaglio ring . . . from @Circa1700.  The intaglio is the star -- incredible skilled detailed carving in a perfect minimal setting.  The British hallmarks are all there, but a little bit of a mystery as to the year...long story, but it hardly matters, as I am never giving this one up!

(Top) Victorian-era French pave turquoise initial ring . . . another from @theedencollective.  All I can say is thank goodness I did not change my name when I got married, just so I could get this ring.  Some things are meant to be.

Pinky:  Georgian flat cut garnet eternity band ...from @lisajshuler.  I have searched more antiques booths than I care to count for this ring, and yet I found it on IG.  I eyed this baby long enough to gestate a real live human one (at least it felt like it) and cursed the Georgian ladies for their tiny fingers . . . until I sized my pinky and realized I could make this Georgian mine.


Not to be completely ring-centric, here is a group of some of my favorite pendants recently sourced online.  

Clockwise from the top:

Top:  Massive English Victorian rock crystal orb, with a jeweled snake coiled around it.  Mesmerizing and mystical.  (See detailed photo).

Right:  French Belle Epoque onyx locket, set with a dragon  -- or is it a basilisk?  Either way, I love this guardian mama.     

Bottom:  Art Nouveau Austro-Hungarian Plique-a-Jour locket.  I am loco for enamel and lockets -- and bonus that the lady is wearing jewelry.  

Left:  Victorian coral figa (in fact, an entire coral arm).  This piece is so ridiculously over the top it had my name all over it.  A figa ARM clutching a bunch of lucky coral horns?  AND wearing a turquoise gold bracelet AND an Etruscan style turquoise embellished "cap sleeve"??!!  Crazy in the best way.  My uber lucky charm.

Center:  Victorian Scottish seal, with a carved citrine.  I have a deep fondness for this one.  The top is deeply carved with flora and fauna, depicting a game of "Hare and Hounds", a precursor to Paper Chase.  The seal itself is a wonderful citrine intaglio of a coat of arms, with a one word, yet powerful motto "Essayez” ("Try").  I wear this when I need a reminder to go for it!


My Jewel Box: Frozen Antique Rings


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I'm pretty sure there is a correlation between online shopping and snow days. After growing up with snow days as being a common occurrence, moving down south and experiencing their "snow days" is usually somewhat comical. But, these past few days have truly been a rarity with an ice storm that has pretty much shut the whole city down. The roads have not been treated, so no one ventures out and most businesses are closed. This leaves everyone stuck at home with lots of freetime paired with boredom. Solution? Online shopping! Here are all my current favorites from my personal jewelry box, some of which were purchased online, with some new pieces I haven't talked about yet!

From left to right:

Edwardian diamond elogated ring set in gold, with platinum-top STORY HERE

my grandmother's 10k gold and glass cluster ring STORY HERE

my latest date ring added to my collection a Victorian 14k gold '01 from MarketSquare Jewelers

Victorian 14k yellow gold signet ring with an M engraved and small old cut diamonds from eBay 

center Edwardian diamond elongated ring set in gold with platinum-top STORY HERE

Victorian monogram ring conversion, used to be a flat nameplate affixed to a black ribbon

Edwardian diamond ring set with an old cushion cut diamond and single cut diamonds

14k yellow gold Emma fringe ring designed by Ashley Childs



giveaway prize

If you've heard the news, Gem Gossip is hosting giveaways all month long in February! We're excited to give back to all our amazing followers, readers and loyal fans!  Each Monday, a new GIVEAWAY will be posted...just follow the instructions on how to enter (each may be different) and we will be selecting a winner every Friday! There will be FOUR amazing pieces of jewelry up for grabs and I made sure each one is unique and different from one another!


Twin sapphire and rose cut diamond ring, circa late 1800s with British hallmarks

From ButterLane Antiques

How to Enter-------> 1. Follow @_butterlaneantiques on Instagram

                                2. Go to their website and fill out your name/email under the COMPETITION tab



Q & A with Owner of Trumpet & Horn

Trumpet & horn Trumpet & Horn is new to the antique jewelry scene, launching just a year and a half ago, but has quickly became a favorite jewelry destination!  Husband and wife duo and owners, Jerome & Kim Heidenreich, along with twin brother Tom, are definitely not new to the jewelry industry. With over 30 years in the industry, buying and selling beautiful pieces of jewelry worldwide, their expertise has finally been honed into one amazing business. That is where the genius branding from Kim comes into play, and Trumpet & Horn was born!  

I caught up with Jerry to answer a few questions for Gem Gossip readers:4952675755_33a24f15c0

As a kid growing up in Minneapolis, my Mom would take my brother’s and I to garage sales and flea markets. I loved looking for vintage finds at a very early age. I started collecting vintage beer cans when I was about 12. By the time I was in my teens, I began working in a local jewelry store, as a gift-wrapper, it was there that I discovered my love for fine jewelry.



After being in the wholesale vintage jewelry business both in Europe and US for over 25 years, my wife Kim and I decided that we wanted to try a new approach to selling vintage engagement rings. We both loved the idea of reaching out to other vintage jewelry lovers via an e-commerce platform, where we could share our passions for these great pieces of art with people all over the world. We officially launched Trumpet & Horn in January 2013.

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I have purchased large collections from Fortune 500 families and single items from people I have met on an airplane. To me , it is all about finding a great piece that is no longer loved, and restoring it to it’s original excellence. I love that I have the ability to share such a wonderful piece of jewelry with someone new who will get to fall in love with it and provide that it with a new home.

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I have acquired many fabulous pieces of jewelry that have been worn by celebrities and the Hollywood elite. A few of my most memorable pieces include cuff links and watches that were owned by Gene Kelly, cuff links that once belonged to Sammy Davis, Jr., a former Archbishop’s gem and gold cross collection, a rock crystal and diamond art deco brooch that belonged to Jackie Kennedy. As far as jar dropping in terms of value, I once possessed a 26 carat fancy yellow vintage cushion cut diamond.

Trumpet & horn Trumpet & horn


My favorite pieces in my collection include a gold and enamel cuff bracelet in the shape of a bear that was given to me by one of my best friends from Chicago. Also, a 18kt solid gold horse drawn carriage with a 25 carat aquamarine top that I purchased in Switzerland. My son used to play with it on my desk when he came to work with me. He thought it was a Hot Wheel toy.

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