Friday, 2 March 2012

Vintage Jewellery Special

Vintage jewellery is a passion of mine and I have blogged about it before here and here.

I recently became Godmother (second time this year... maybe it's time I started behaving responsibly) and decided that if the little girl turns out out to be anything as stylish as her mother, she needs some serious costume jewellery. I have had my eye on this beautiful 1960s Czech glass necklace for a while... and now I have the perfect excuse to buy it. It arrived last week and is even more beautiful than it looks in the photo. Hopefully both mother and daughter will get some wear out of it!

Since the last time I blogged about baubles, I have come across a few more jewellers who sell vintage or vintage-inspired creations.

Edwina Ings-Chambers wrote a piece for the Sunday Times Style magazine last year about the trend for reworking old designs into new, more modern creations.

The article featured jewellery by London-based duo Diane Mette and Chantal Laren, who set up Dicha in 2009. Their Decades collection is absolutely breathtaking and I particularly love these Art Deco-style earrings:

Since 1978, Harry Fane has bought and sold some of the greatest creations from Cartier's golden years of the 1920s and 1930s, including this pair of platinum and diamond link bracelets:

Charlize Theron wore vintage Cartier jewellery to the Golden Globes ceremony earlier this year.

Harry Fane's gallery, Obsidian, also sells Verdura jewellery. Fulco di Verdura (1898-1989), a Sicilian Duke, began working with Coco Chanel early in his career as a jewellery designer. Their collaboration lasted for decades and established Verdura as the favourite accessories brand of European Royalty and Hollywood.

Coco Chanel wearing Verdura's 'Maltese Cross' bangles

If you're looking for a similar design (but without the eye-watering £20,000 price tags some Verdura bangles sell for) then check out Katherine Alexander's chunky bracelets, which combine special vintage jewellery set into acrylic for a high-gloss finish:

Obsidian also sells beautiful jewellery by contemporary designers, including William Welstead. He works with diamonds in their natural form and his pieces are known for almost invisible settings:

Another contemporary jewellery brand whose work I really love is Erickson Beamon. The designers behind the label, Karen Erickson and Vicki Beamon, created a collection of 1920s Berlin-influenced dresses with integrated gems for their presentation in New York last month:

Their collection includes brooches, necklaces, earrings, and more unusual pieces such as this jewel-encrusted mask inspired by the 1974 film The Night Porter, starring Charlotte Rampling:

Anita Quansah creates unique costume jewellery that has appeared in Christian Lacroix's haute couture shows. Her unique pieces fuse vintage jewellery with semi-precious stones, rare African beads and textiles.

'Sudan' body chain

Anita is a genius and her necklaces are real investment pieces.

Maggie Owen's boutique is in the middle of Bloomsbury (just around the corner from Juno Says Hello's studio) and has a fabulous selection of Anton Heunis costume jewellery.

Anton's designs are inspired by the glamourous jewellery he found on his Grandmother's dressing table as a child. I love the colour combination of these earrings:

If you're looking to rent for a special event, rather than buy, I recommend Norwich-based Rent Your Rocks, who have an amazing collection of earrings, including these 18ct white gold and diamond wheel drop earrings:

The rental cost of this particular pair is £245 per week (the retail value is £5,475).

Dramatic Jewels has a a great collection of jewellery that is available to hire for 30% of the retail price.

Gold and jet Art Deco-style necklace with matching cuff

Susan Caplan wrote a guide on how to collect vintage jewellery for Stella magazine last year:

We have quite a collection of books on vintage jewellery in the studio - the best one is probably Carole Tanenbaum's lavishly illustrated Vintage Costume Jewellery

Customers are welcome to borrow books from our library at any time. To make an appointment in our Bloomsbury studio please get in touch via this link. If you have any suggestions for other vintage-inspired jewellers, please add in the comments below.


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