Fashion Crap: My Antique Jewelry

I keep promising more “normal” fashion stuff and then never deliver.  This is mainly because I end up posting everything at the Dims fashion board and then promptly forget this blog exists.  So, in an attempt to rectify this continuous, egregious error, I give you…MY REALLY FREAKING OLD JEWELRY COLLECTION.  Okay, so maybe that isn’t “normal,” but at the very least it doesn’t involve me in a corset.  So there.  (Click the jumplink below the pic for the whole article.  )

1924 diamond earrings.
1924 diamond and pearl earrings.

Anyway, when I say old, I mean OLD.  First, I give you two cameos.  The larger one belonged to my great-aunt’s husband’s mother.  Like that?  Anyway, I’m guessing it’s 1910sish, but I have no way of knowing for sure. It’s a genuine carved shell, featuring what appears to be a maenad.  The ivy in her hair and the very Dionysian thyrsus (a very phallic giant fennel stalk-turned-ancient-Greek-fertility-symbol) in the background are the dead giveaways.

Maenad cameo, non-maenad cameo.
William Adolphe Bouguereau maenad with thyrsus.
William Adolphe Bouguereau maenad, with thyrsus.
Maenad with ivy'd hair and thyrsus.
Greek maenad with thyrsus (and ivy all over her peplos).
Wearing maenad cameo and 1924 diamond earrings. Incidentally, I totally recommend DiorShow mascara.

The smaller cameo belonged to my great-grandmother, and is probably roughly the same age.  I’m not sure what it’s made of, but it’s not shell or stone.

Also from my great-grandmother comes this stunning yellow glass pendant.  Once again, I have no precise year of manufacture, but I’m guessing late teens or, more likely, the 1920s.  At any rate, it’s art nouveau enough to look good with my 1912 tea gown.

Glass pendant.
Photo on 2009-12-09 at 03.39
Me, wearing said pendant.

Now THIS is my platinum Pedre watch, probably early 1930s.  It has a gazillion tiny diamonds on it.  It’s crap for keeping actual time, but it looks FIENDISHLY cool, has an awesome story behind it, and reminds me of the Chicago song “Does Anybody Really Know What Time it is?” (“A pretty lady looked at me and said her diamond watch had stopped cold dead…”).  ANYWAY.  The story is that my grandfather used to own a bar in SoMa on 6th Street in San Francisco, and from that bar he also ran a pawn operation.  This was one of the items pawned.  Okay, so maybe it’s not such an awesome story, but it does have a compelling noirish quality to it that “I bought it at the flea market” can’t deliver.

Platinum & diamond deco Pedre watch.
Platinum and diamond deco Pedre watch.

Now for my prides and joys.  First, my 1924 diamond earrings.  They’re white gold with little dangly pearls.  I love them so much I’m afraid to wear them.  I bought them at Jewel D’Orleans (AKA Dianne’s Estate Jewelry) in Disneyland.

1924 diamond and pearl earrings.
1924 diamond and pearl earrings.

Me wearing said earrings.
Me wearing said earrings.
Me wearing said earrings.
Me wearing said earrings.
Me wearing said earrings.
Me wearing said earrings.
Me wearing said earrings.
Me wearing said earrings. Yes, I'm a total photo whore.

And last, my awesome gold mourning brooch, ca. 1850.  It has black enamel, a profusion of  little seed pearls, and a plaited lock of the deceased’s hair inside.    This piece also came from Dianne’s Estate Jewelry.

1850 mourning brooch.

Next time: Beaded purses, my silk shawl, a SWEET antique dress clip, and maybe some other stuff.

10 Replies to “Fashion Crap: My Antique Jewelry”

    1. No YOU are awesome for selling me half that stuff. :*

      OH – will be around next week. No AP so I can’t come visit you at work, but if you want to get togetha let meh kno! 😀

  1. Very beautiful pieces. I especially like the cameos. I have a question though: have you had any of your pieces appraised? Some of them may be worth a pretty penny! (Sorry, I watch too much Antiques Road Show!)

    1. RIIIIIMMMMMAAAA. I really like AR and would probably bring some of my stuff if they came our way!

      The inherited stuff hasn’t been appraised; the brooch and earrings were purchased fairly recently so I have an idea as to value!

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