Jewelry Collection Stories: Lindsey of @ParkAvenueAntiques

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I’ve followed Lindsey of Park Avenue Antiques for a very long time! My first interaction with her was sort of humorous–I remember being on my way out the door to go antiquing for the day with my mom and sister. I was waiting on a ring to go up on the auction block so I unpleasantly made them wait until it did, not realizing it wouldn’t be until another 45 minutes. I can’t remeber exactly why I lost out on the ring, but while in the car finally on our way, I took a screenshot of the ring and posted it on Instagram with the caption, “Who outbid me on this portrait ring?! Confess!!” Lindsey was sweet enough to message me to tell me she had been the final bidder on it and graciously offered it for sale. A story too good to be made up, I’ve treasured that ring ever since! Over the years, we’ve continued to follow each other–even one point I tried meeting up at an antique show, but kept missing her! Hopefully meeting will be in the cards for us in the future, but until then…let’s check out her amazing jewelry collection!

Like many of you, I have been attracted to sparkly things for as far back as I can remember. As a little girl, I collected rocks and minerals, little buttons and sea glass. My father was an antiques dealer and the two of us were always on an “antiquing adventure”. One of our favorite places to visit was Roycroft Antiques in East Aurora, NY. They had a wooden whisky barrel filled with buttons and beads and I would dig through that barrel until my hands were black! Who knows what I thought I’d find in there! It was all about the hunt….

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I share this silver filigree necklace with my daughter Cameron. The three Edwardian silver bears represent her and her two brothers.

Around the age of 5, we moved to Hershey, Pennsylvania. It was a difficult transition. My parents both worked two jobs and I was home alone a lot. My mother always found ways to show me how much I was loved and that she was thinking of me. She came up with a hide and seek game we called “Rubber Legs” which involved hiding a yellow plastic figure. Before she left for work in the morning, she would hide Rubber Legs somewhere for me to find. Then I would hide him somewhere for her. I almost always hid him in her antique spool cabinet/jewelry box. It was a magical place where I wasn’t supposed to “dig around” but I couldn’t help myself! There were sparkly rings, beautiful strings of trade beads, flapper necklaces and cameos. She had all kinds of treasures but my favorite piece was a little gold acorn charm that rattled when shaken.

Once we moved to Hershey, adventures in antiquing with dad still continued. He opened an antique lighting shop in Adamstown, PA in the Black Angus Antiques Mall. Most Sundays I would tag along to help him but really spent most of my days with other dealers. I was fascinated with their knowledge in various fields and eager to hear their stories. This is where my love for jewelry and antiques really started.

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LEFT: Georgian sapphire and rose cut diamond bow brooch in silver topped gold, purchased at the Las Vegas Antique Jewelry & Watch Show

When collecting jewelry became a serious passion, I invested in books. Jewelry books on private collections, construction, symbolism, intaglios, various periods and markings. My jewelry library has helped me to educate myself and develop a true respect for the craftsmanship and symbolism that these pieces hold. I try to add one book to my collection every month. I would encourage any aspiring jewelry collector to do this as well.

RIGHT: Eight years ago, I was newly divorced and the only jewelry I had was my and my grandmothers wedding ring. I put some money aside and decided I’d like to create a piece of jewelry that would represent my family. I hoped to create a ring that could be passed on to one of my children. The first jeweler I went to was a rather unpleasant experience. I nearly gave up on my idea but decided to give it one more try. This is when I met Skip Colflesh, the owner of The Jeweler’s Bench in Hershey, PA. He helped me create the perfect ring. We used the diamonds in my grandmothers wedding ring, my engagement ring and each of the children’s birthstones. The first time I saw the ring it was an emotional experience. It was a perfect representation of my life’s journey. The diamonds no longer felt like the loss of a loved one or a failed marriage – they were now something beautiful and very personal. But more than that, I was so grateful for the friendship that had come out of designing the ring together. Skip has become one of my dearest friends and also my mentor. Friends make all the difference.

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I really don’t have a specific type of jewelry or period that I collect. I am mostly drawn to gemstones and figural pieces but my collection is quite varied. My most heavily worn pieces of jewelry are my watch chains. I love connecting them together for different looks and wearing them with various pendants.

Here are a few of my favorite necklaces:

LEFT: Painted enamel mourning locket depicting a young girl and her dog. It reads “Mary Rutherfurd Prime April 16, 1810 – Died September 9, 1835”

SECOND FROM LEFT: Opal pendant from Arts & Crafts Movement. This pendant reminds me of my favorite spring flower, lilac, and the opals are absolutely electric. I bought this in an antique store in England.

THIRD FROM LEFT: Not easy to pick a favorite, but if I had to, this would be it! Raj Era moonstone pendant from @saintespritofchelsea Beautifully crafted in silver and gold with huge shimmering moonstone cabochons.

CENTER: 19th c Kerosang with faceted white zircon.

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Here are a few of my favorite rings:

Victorian era amethyst and pearl serpent ring was purchased from David Ashville of Ashville Fine Arts.

The kunzite and diamond ring I bought from @blackamooruk. I believe this ring was originally an early 20th century brooch that was carefully converted. I love the size of the kunzite and it fits my finger perfectly.

The Victorian topaz ring was purchased from @ishyantiques.

The art deco moonstone ring is one of my favorites. It was purchased from Brad Wilson of Wilson’s Estate Jewelry in Philadelphia, PA.

The massive cameo ring I created using a 19th century cameo from @antiquestoreinwayne and a custom gold setting created by Skip Colflesh @thejewelersbenchofhershey.

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LEFT: Agate tree ring – This is one of my creations. I used an agate sourced from an old cufflink mounted in a setting made by @thejewelersbenchofherehey Victorian chrysoberyl and gold band @westandsonjewellery

RIGHT: This is my most recent purchase. My dear friend Will @martindaleasianarts recently took me on a day trip to a quaint town about an hour outside of London where I found it in an antiques shop.

Thank you for giving me this opportunity. I am honored to be a part of the Instagram jewelry community. Your posts have greatly enhanced my knowledge and appreciation for all types of jewelry and the friendships that have developed because of our shared passion for jewelry are priceless to me.

xoxoGemGossip

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Jewelry Collection Stories: Danielle of @jasmyntea

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This month’s Jewelry Collection Story comes from a favorite Instagram collector of mine and it’s not because we share the same name, although that helps 😉 It is because Danielle’s style and curation of such a fine collection is unlike any other! She has a fierce eye for what she loves and I’ve been wanting to know her story for quite awhile now. We finally got her story (she is a busy San Francisco dweller, with a full-time job that doesn’t involve jewelry) and she has provided some amazing photos of her personal collection. Let’s dive into her story!

“I have always been a collector. Whether it was collecting vintage jewelry, or vintage clothing, or books on costume and fashion. I’m always looking for unique items that speak to me in some way. I first fell in love with jewelry when I was about 12 and would ride my bike to the thrift store to look for treasures. I always liked vintage clothing, shoes, jewelry and scarves. Old pieces have stories within them. And I always liked to imagine the travels the pieces went through before I became their custodian.

My mother does not really wear much jewelry. Most of the jewelry she wears, except her wedding band, was probably given to her by her sisters or her daughters. She has very few pieces, so I didn’t really grow up surrounded by jewelry. I didn’t know one of my grandmothers as they both passed away before I was born. But I do wear her gold framed glasses from the 1940s every day as my own eyeglasses. I love this connection with my past. My other grandmother didn’t really have much affinity for jewelry either. So I’m not really sure where my love of jewelry and antiques comes from–but I can tell you that I’m obsessed 🙂

When I first started collecting jewelry in high school I liked vintage brooches and small enamel pins. This was what I could afford to purchase. From vintage pins, I branched out to vintage sterling. I always loved going to antique stores and hunting for unusual, inexpensive pieces. My early collection included David Anderson Norwegian pins and bracelets, sterling charm bracelets, bakelite bangles, and funky long beads to layer. I always liked layering, mixing and creating a story with my jewelry. As my style evolved I also liked to support local jewelry artists, so I would go to fairs and stores that sold the work of local jewelry artists and try to pick pieces I liked. My modern collection is made of up certain designers – Marla Aaron, Judy Geib, Gabriela Kiss, Louison Rare and Fine (GemstoneGypsy), Jean Jean Vintage, Gillian Conroy, Variance Objects, Dahlia Khanner, Alberian and Aulde, Amali Jewelry and local San Francisco artists Betsy Barron and Alix Bluh. I tend to gravitate towards jewelry artists versus major designer jewelry. Although one of the first pieces I completely coveted when I was 16 was Tiffany’s Elsa Perreti sterling bean necklace.

In the recent years I have gravitated towards building my antique collection. I love to go to antique fairs and shows, stop in small antique shops when I travel and I follow many antique jewelry sellers on IG. If you are curious, my first IG discovery was Erie Basin and my early purchases were a Toi et Moi Victorian diamond ring and a French link bracelet that many people have asked if they could purchase from me. Finding the antique jewelry community on IG has been very meaningful to me. I feel like I’ve found a crew of fellow jewelry enthusiasts that I can geek out about Georgian jewels, or old cut diamonds, or how to style antique and modern jewelry together. Before IG I never really participated in social media. Finding the IG community of jewelry lovers has been a nice addition in my life, so I don’t drive my husband and sons nuts with my jewelry interests. I’ve also enjoyed meeting fellow IG collectors on my travels.

I can’t really categorize what I collect, because I look for unusual pieces or pieces that resonate for me in some way. I feel like I am the custodian of the pieces I collect. I can’t always articulate why I fall in love with pieces. Sometimes the piece feels sentimental, sometimes the piece will fill an aspect of my collection that I need for a look I’m striving for. On a broad level, I like Georgian and Victorian jewelry. And then I like modern pieces that provide contrast for the more sweet/sentimental antique pieces. I love to mix antique and modern pieces together. Probably my favorite thing to mix are Marla Aaron locks with my antique necklaces, charms and brooches. Mixing and styling jewelry is a creative outlet for me. It’s self-expression—what I’m trying to put out there on a given day. I mix everything: yellow, rose, green gold, platinum and silver. On most days I have on five types of metal. I actually tend to prefer wearing mixed metals versus monochromatic styling. Although sometimes I like to do all gold or all silver or all one kind of gemstone.

I’m sentimental when it comes to jewelry. I always wear a Marla Aaron lock which to me symbolizes to hold fast to what’s important. I once did post on IG about how my modern jewelry spirit animal is my engraved Marla Aaron lock that has all family initials hidden within the engraved design. If I had to pick an antique spirit animal it would probably either be antique chains or signet rings. My thorn necklace (by Gillian Conroy) symbolizes that life has thorns to deal with but I am strong enough to weather the thorns. My hand bloodstone signet ring from Metier with the word “confido,” which means trust, reminds me to trust myself. And then on any given day, my other jewelry represents other items of importance to me or things I’m trying to stay centered about. My Mizpah ring from TheOneILoveNYC is for my husband and me, and my Souvenir bangle from Lucy Verity hasn’t left my wrist since I got it last year – I look down and remember. My Lenore heart rings: to remember love, my signets: to remember the people who are important to me, my memento mori ring from Nvitblanche: to remember to live in the moment, my ruby locket from Circa 1700 has diamonds in it from my mother-in-law in the amount of Pi carats (ok I’m a definite geek). Recently my husband and I gave each other Gabriela Kiss eye rings to symbolize us watching over each other.

You may wonder what pieces I am on the hunt for next. I try to keep an open mind when I am hunting for jewelry, because you never know what you might find. I always ask myself does this resonate for me, will I really wear it and reach for this piece everyday? I like to purchase pieces that I will wear, I don’t like for jewelry to just sit in my jewelry box. I don’t necessarily keep a running wish list. Although at the beginning of 2016 I did an IG jewelry wishlist post and when I look back on it now, I did end up collecting some of the items on my wishlist during 2016, (like my French cut eternity band from Platt Boutique Jewelry). Right now I’m coveting high carat gold items – 22K gold bands (I just got one from Metier) and poesy rings, a Georgian memento mori ring and chains, always more chains. Recently, I’ve been loving layering a lot of gold watch chains.

In closing, almost every piece I wear holds meaning for me of something I want to remember or a story I want to tell that day with my jewelry. Jewelry wearing and styling is my personal storytelling.”

xoxoGemGossip

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Five Investment Pieces You Need In Your Jewelry Wardrobe

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I’ve been collecting fine jewelry for over fifteen years now and it is interesting to look back on pieces that I purchased in the beginning. I like to ask myself if those items were a good investment and part of evaluating that is knowing how much wear I’ve gotten out of each piece since purchasing. Your investment is only as good as how much joy and wear the piece of jewelry is providing for you–I am a firm believer in that!

But what if you don’t know where to start? Let’s say you’re new to collecting fine jewelry and only own a few odds and ends. You’ve got to start somewhere and being able to create a look by accessorizing your daily outfits with these pieces is a must. So let’s start with a list I’ve compiled of the five investment pieces you need to have in your jewelry wardrobe. These are staples that are meant to be classics, which never go out of style and will continue to get worn for years to come. These are pieces you should not feel bad for splurging on and rightfully so. These are future heirlooms, diamond encrusted, solid gold, hefty pieces that will be worth the same, if not more later on.

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Jewelry Collection Stories: Leslie of @PinkPirahnah

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This month’s Jewelry Collection Story comes from someone I’ve actually met in person, which doesn’t happen too often since so many people from our lovely Instagram community are from all parts of the world. Leslie came to the GIA Alumni meeting when I spoke in DC last summer and I recognized her right away because of the opal ring she was wearing! Funny how sometimes that happens. It has been fun getting to know her on Instagram and am so excited she agreed to share her personal collection story with us–take it away Leslie:

“I am a total museum junky by nature and my love for classical art and history runs deep. However, jewelry as art was not on my radar until about 12 years ago when I found my first vintage piece, the pretzel ring. Yes, I had a few token pieces of mall jewelry but I never really thought there was much substance to jewelry until I discovered the vintage and antique world. A golden pretzel with diamond salt appealed to my sense of humor and art. It was also meaningful to me as a Speech Pathologist working with my special needs children on requesting items, one of those items was actually pretzels! I can’t tell you how many kiddos have actually tried to lick it over the years! This one ring started an obsession but also introduced me to my friend Lara from Icon Style in NYC. I learned so much from her over the next few years and with her help I really grew my collection and love for all eras.

My current collection includes Victorian, Edwardian, Art Nouveau. Art Deco, Vintage and a few Georgian pieces. I don’t necessarily have a preferred era but I think the biggest appeal of antique and vintage jewelry is how unique and detailed the pieces can be. Color is a big factor for me but most importantly I like quirk. If it’s funny or unique, I have to have it! I love to mix and match eras and pile it on pretty thick. Certainly, no one would accuse me of neglecting my jewelry.

One thing I wear every day is obviously my Art Deco engagement ring. I had always assumed I would get a Victorian cluster ring but when I tried this piece on I fell hard for its lively black opal.

The one motif that I am magnetically drawn to is snakes. I can spot a serpent in a jewelry case like a shark scenting blood in the water. In fact, I found my tiny snake earrings despite their purposely discreet location in my friend’s display case. In the histories of various civilizations, snakes have come to symbolize many ideas but my favorite is that of eternal love. Symbolism aside, snakes have the unique visual impact that I find hard to resist.

Charms are another obsession I have. I try to limit myself but I just love some of the funny and super detailed pieces you can find. My favorite charm is my vintage gold ghost. He is perfectly crafted and has the most beautiful brown marquise diamond eyes that peek from behind his sheet.

Another style of jewelry I desperately love is Art Deco era “pools of light.” Layering these rock crystal orbs is addictive but also causes some serious neck strain. I have several pieces but the most interesting one is a rock crystal orb the size of a jaw breaker. It is completely encased in an open silver work shell depicting bunnies paddling in canoes.

Rings are my go-to to buy and again I don’t discriminate. I collect a variety of stones, styles, and metals. One thing I don’t like to do is size my rings. I have a few exceptions but in general I try not to alter the finger bling that comes into my collection. If one is too big I simply stack it with gold bands to adjust the fit.

When I was first collecting I would shop at Icon Style in NYC and I would go to all the big NYC shows religiously. Having relocated to the DMV area I have had more opportunities to go to antiquing in rural areas but also go to the bigger shows like the DC flea and the Baltimore Antique Show. I don’t shop online much but I have found several lovely pieces through the Instagram community.”

xoxoGemGossip

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Jewelry Collection Stories: Jennifer of @Dupkaspike

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To end out the year, our last Jewelry Collection Story comes from Jennifer, or as many may know her on Instagram, @Dupkaspike. Her collection is eclectic, heavily sentimental and so fun to look at. She captured her collecting essence perfectly in these photos. Now if only I can meet her one day and she them in person! 😉 …take it away Jennifer:

I can’t say that I have always loved jewelry, but I can pinpoint the moment when the love affair began. When I was 16, my Dad took me into Keil’s, an antique jewelry store on Royal Street in New Orleans, and bought me two rings. One was a mother of pearl cameo with an onyx surround, and another was a rose gold carnelian with a gold inlaid intaglio of a Rose of Sharon.

It was an important moment in my understanding of jewelry. My Mom was a big Southwestern jewelry fan (I’ve inherited her collection), but it wasn’t something that resonated strongly with me, though I admired it. I was drawn more to the sentimental, and to the personal.

I did not do a lot of collecting in early adulthood. My husband is Chinese, and so over the years and when we married, I received traditional Chinese 22k gold and jade pieces as gifts, which I look forward to passing on to my children. Traditional Chinese don’t really like lower-karat gold pieces and I liked history and sentiment; so we were in agreement that mall jewelry wasn’t really for me. The jade pieces are my favorites of these, as is a giant 22k dragon and phoenix ring.

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Over the years I have gravitated to certain genres. As an amateur painter, I adore portrait miniatures, and greatly admire the skill required to produce them. I don’t have many, but I’m always on the lookout for special pieces. Recently I acquired a large Georgian locket brooch, from CJ Antiques, surrounded by amethysts and plan to commission a portrait of my kids and dog. One piece I wear often I got from Duvenay, a pretty portrait of Marie Antoinette, with a diamond halo that was converted from a stickpin.

I’m a strong believer in personalization, so mostly every new piece I own has some engraving or dedication on it. When my kids were born, I bought heavy Tiffany Lucida wedding bands and had their names engraved on the outside and their birthdates on the inside. Similarly, I had their names and birthdates engraved on the inside of gemstone and diamond stacking rings. I have several stacking rings, which I love to mix with larger pieces. One set I wear all the time is two ruby keeper rings from Jewellery Hannah, as well as a giardinetto from Pocket of Rocks. Last year I worked with Hoard Jewelry on engraving to flat gold bands for them with personalized messages. One has the cipher of a “nonsense” love song my son used to sing to me as a child when he was barely verbal; only he and I understand it. He later told me that it was his love song to his Mom, and so of course my heart melted. Other antique engraved pieces of jewelry with dedications or initials I own are mostly amatory, including a Russian rock crystal locket with diamond initials on the face that once held hair; a tiny acrostic locket with engraving and locket space for hair; a large, double heart picture frame, and a banded agate mourning locket. A favorite bangle acquired from Lenore Dailey spells, “Dieu Vous Garde,” or “God Protect You.” I also have a locket with that motif. One of my very favorite pieces it is really quite special. I got it from Glorious Antique Jewelry. It is dated 1790 and has some interesting initials on the back, and a lovely message on the front, “Pour ma Sophie pour toujours ma petite cherie toût, 1790” which roughly translates to, “To my Sophie, you will always be my little darling, 1790.”

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I love LOVE, and as such can’t seem to stop seeking out pansy jewelry. I have several enamel and gemstone pieces—a pendant and pocket watch. Pansy jewelry of course was symbolic of the French for “ Pense à moi,” or “ Think of me.” Similarly a Georgian pendant brooch I find myself wearing often simply says, “ L’Amour,” and is decorated with two seed pearl lovebirds. A garnet and white enamel pendant reads in Latin, “ Dulcis Vita::Tibi Vita,” or “ The Good “ Life; Your Life.” One piece I have, ruby hearts with diamond wings, was acquired from Park Avenue Jewelry and I decided to convert it from a brooch to a necklace. I’m a strong believer that jewelry should be worn, and I realized that it would get a lot more use for me personally as a necklace. I got this piece as my mother was dying, and it will always be very special to me as a remembrance of her.

French St. Esprit pieces are also a love and I get a lot of use out of a French regional cross I found. One of the St. Esprits is probably late 18th century and makes a political statement, with its red and blue pastes. A favorite piece of mine is an 1835 rose cut diamond, gold and silver Halley’s Comet pendant (likely converted from a brooch) that I got from Inez Stodel.

xoxoGemGossip

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Dupuis Important Jewelry Auction set for November 20th, 2016

Lot 29 Lot 37 Lot 68 Lot 71 Lot 92 Lot 110 Lot 322 Lot 323 Lot 386 Lot 387 Lot 433 Lot 455 Lot 461 Lot 464

My favorite Canadian auction house, Dupuis, is ready for their fall/winter sale which is set for November 20th, 2016. With over 550 lots of some of the most beautiful jewels you’ve ever seen! As per usual, I spent an entire afternoon perusing the auction catalog scoping out my favorites. My highlights are below, but make sure you browse the listings yourself because I had a hard time narrowing down my top choices. My weekend checklist includes registering/signing up for the auction and sharpening my pencil, figuring out my highest bids. I wish their Toronto headquarters was closer so I could view the jewels live in person. But luckily I can bid from the comfort of my home and you can too!

Dupuis Important Jewels Auction >> November 20th, 2016

Lot 29: Right off the bat, I opened up my catalog to this amazing elongated ring. It hits all the right points for an absolute favorite for me. The piece is 1920s Art Deco filigree applied to a later 14k yellow gold band. The diamonds are all-original Old European cuts and the sapphire accents are really special. Estimate: $600-900

Lot 37: Emeralds have been catching my attention lately and this ring is no exception. Weighing in at approximately 4.75 carats it holds its own. Diamonds surround the center stone, complementing it well with over a half carat of colorless sparkle. The ring is done in platinum and 18k yellow gold. Estimate: $1,950-2,700

Lot 68: Futuristic and modern in every way, this ring is set with a triangular trillion cut diamond that is approximately 1.50 carats. Clean lines and a simple setting finish off the ring done in platinum. The crease down the center of the metal is everything. Estimate: $5,625-7,125

Lot 71: I know smoking cigarettes is not considered cool anymore, but this 1940s cigarette case is a whole new level of cool, and you don’t even need to put cigarettes in it! Every detail, from the horseshoe, to the Art Deco-esque design on the front, is perfection. It has Russian assay marks and comes with a pouch. Estimate: $3,000-3,750

Lot 92: A Belle Époque sapphire and diamond ring which is truly what dreams are made of! The sapphire weighs nearly two carats and is surrounded nicely by Old Mine cut diamonds. It is offset by a gorgeous Old Mine cut diamond that weighs approximately 0.80 carats. What a stunner! Estimate: $1,350-1,650

Lot 110: Any Egyptian Revival piece of jewelry I am all over–this particular brooch/pendant is really intriguing. The pharaoh faience is set in a Victorian gold and black enamel oval, with beautiful tracery patterns. This is such a unique piece! Estimate: $750-900

Lot 322: I had to include some over-the-top pieces within my highlights and these next few lots are great examples of breath-taking gemstones. This ring features a giant 9.25 carat rectangular cut emerald front and center, which has a GIA certificate stating that it is Columbian origin with moderate clarity enhancement. The trapezoid side diamonds are the finishing touch. Estimate: $45,000-52,500

Lot 323: Were you going to say, “I love this sapphire?!” Same. But we’re both wrong. This is actually a tanzanite! 23.50 carats to be exact! Yes, that is monstrous but I love everything about this ring. The simple setting is perfect for this stone and I love the claw-like prongs. Estimate: $16,500-21,000

Lot 386: Had to include some fancy diamonds too. This radiant cut fancy pink diamond is spectacular–weighing 1.28 carats and comes with a GIA certificate and is a VS-1 in clarity. The ring is set in platinum and we love the marquise cut diamonds form a beautiful halo setting arond the center stone. Estimate: $150,000-187,500

Lot 387: Another radiant cut fancy diamond, this time a fancy light blue that weighs 2.30 carats. The setting is really unique and uses pear-shaped diamonds and small round fancy pink diamonds to create the design. This is such a fun and elegant ring, it also comes with a GIA certificate. Estimate: $225,000-262,500

Lot 433: Just for you, a fun and flirty pair of amethyst and diamond earrings set in 18k yellow gold. These stood out to me because they are bold and unique–love the star design, the cabochon cuts and the dangles. These would light up someone’s outfit! Estimate: $375-525

Lot 455: Speaking of amethyst, this Art Nouveau necklace has all the right shapes and silhouettes. Set with four oval cut amethysts entirely done in platinum, this necklace flows and hangs in the most feminine way. The delicate openwork of the metal makes it even more amazing. Estimate: $3,450-3,750

Lot 461: A Victorian turquoise bracelet unlike any other! A rare piece of history set with calibre cut turquoise set immaculately in circular patterns. I love the old cut diamonds included in this pieces, making it fabulous in every way possible. Done in 18k yellow gold. Estimate: $450-600

Lot 464: And to the winner of the bracelet just previously mentioned, these earrings would be a great match. Flower clusters made of turquoise, pearls and rose cut diamonds dangle from the ears. You will get heads turning and people staring in these! Estimate: $225-300

This post was brought to you in collaboration with Dupuis Auctions.

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Gem Gossip Visits Isadora’s Antique Jewelry in Seattle, WA

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Say "I Do" with The Eden Collective’s Bridal Collection

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As much as I needed a bridal selection like this when I first began to even think about engagement rings, I’m glad The Eden Collective is just now launching this fine, curated selection. I wouldn’t know which to choose, there are so many stunning, heirloom pieces ready to be treasured for a lifetime. The collection is a natural extension of Eden’s desire to provide unique and personally meaningful pieces to her clients. It focuses on bridal options, with a hand-selected bunch of original antique and vintage pieces, coinciding amongst some new pieces created with antique inspiration and often cast from original pieces. Wedding band options are plentiful, along with lots of alternative engagement ring choices–something that has been buzzing a lot around the world of all things bridal as of late. And I’m totally on board with it! Future brides are no longer wanting a solitaire diamond with a plain gold band. Even more so, they don’t even want diamonds! They want different, unique, one-of-a-kind

Here’s where The Eden Collective‘s new bridal collection comes into play just in the knick of time.

Eden says, “I think the bridal market has expanded beyond the diamond solitaire “box” to encompass individual expression and a desire for deeper personal meaning in one’s ring choices. It’s like wearing white after Labor Day: the old rules are obsolete and speak to a different time. There’s value in tradition certainly, and beautiful sparkling diamonds will always have a place (though I do prefer the antique cuts) but I think the time has come for acceptance of personal choice and the myriad of variation that can make your engagement ring uniquely yours.”

We couldn’t agree any louder and prouder. To start the collection, The Eden Collective created the stunning boulder opal ring, the first within a series of original pieces which will focus and bring to light gemstones and their romantic gemlore. Gemstones on deck? Eden excitedly says, “Turquoise, opal, moonstone, amethyst, ruby, sapphire… Gems that have symbolic reference to love, fidelity, patience, communication, truthfulness, passion and nurturing affection: all the things a happy successful relationship is based on.”

If you’re currently scoping the jewelry world for your future engagement ring or wedding band…or even a special anniversary piece of jewelry, make sure to check out the new collection from The Eden Collective. Find meaning behind the gemstone, discover something deeper than “just a ring” and create lasting memories.

Some of the pieces featured in the above photoshoot:

14k yellow gold one-of-a-kind handmade boulder opal ring an Eden Collective original, Price: $1,050

14k Moonstone and demantoid garnet flower statement ring (antique pin conversion)

14k LOVE midi (vintage pin conversion), Price: $250

Original 14k bug cuff with diamond eyes, Price: $338

14k moonstone and diamond engagement ring, Price: $525

14k sapphire, ruby and diamond heart pinky (antique pin conversion), Price: $225

14k rose gold vintage ruby eternity wedding band, Price: $725

14k green and white enamel moonstone engagement ring (antique pin conversion), Price: $450

14k Agate statement ring (antique pin conversion)

Antique moonstone trilogy ring, Price: $495

14k gold mine cut diamond enamel flower statement ring (antique pin conversion), Price: $700

14k yellow gold vintage amethyst solitaire ring, Price: $350

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Alex Cooper’s March 3 & 5, 2016 Gallery Auction

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Alex Cooper has an upcoming Gallery Auction set for March 3rd and 5th, 2016 that you won’t want to miss! Consisting of over 1,000 items–the first five pages of their catalogue online features all jewelry–with silver, household items, paintings, collectibles, coins, rugs, etc. making up the other portion of the sale. I’ve spent some time browsing their selection and found some top picks. If you are a collector, I highly suggest browsing their online catalogue yourself and seeing what strikes you! You can easily register to bid online or leave an abesentee bid–because you never know! Good luck!

Lot 11: Opal and diamond ring–a 14k yellow gold diamond and opal ring which just seems as if it were glowing! This ring stood out to me and I think the estimate is a really good price. Estimate: $200-400

Lot 21: Pair of diamond drop earrings–so much sparkle and fun with this pair of earrings. These are actually a two-in-one, where the dangle part is actually a jacket, so the main earrings are simple diamond studs and then you can add the jacket portion to change up the look entirely. Such a cool surprise. The earrings total nearly three carats and are set in 14k white gold. Estimate: $1,500-2,000

Lot 1: Enamel and sapphire bow brooch–this may look like a simple bow brooch, but it is actually Cartier and comes with its original box! The white enamel is in pristine condition and I love the cabochon sapphire dangles at the very bottom–such a fun detail! Estimate: $1,500-2,000

Lot 45: A trio of ladies wedding bands–I love a good antique wedding band and these three are just stunning. Such a great combo, featuring two platinum and diamond bands and one plain 14k yellow gold band. All three are dainty and fine. Estimate: $200-400

Lot 78: Enamel and pearl dangle brooch–as I’ve been drawn to brooches lately with this silhoette, I see here there is a name put to this type of brooch, peacock feathers! I never realized this, but yes it looks like peacock feathers. Navy blue enamel and diamonds always get me, so this brooch is immediately a favorite. Estimate: $300-500

Lot 81: Enamel portrait miniature brooch–ok, so I’ve been obsessing over portrait miniature brooches like this for awhile now, I just have never taken the plunge and purchased one. I love this one, especially the coloring and the features on the young woman’s face. So delicate and feminine. Estimate: $250-450

Lot 85: Garnet pendant and chain–something about the design and shape of this pendant makes it stand out to me. I love a good cluster and while most clusters have a round outline to them, this one is set within a drop, which makes it so unique. Also love the retro star set garnets throughout the piece. Estimate: $300-500

Lot 152: Large Old European diamond ring–wow, what a stunning diamond! This impressive piece features a 3.50 carat Old European cut diamond set within this unique, chunky setting. The approximate clarity and color grade of the stone is SI-2/I-1, JKL which provides a great price point for such a large stone! Starting bid: $3,000

This post was brought to you in collaboration with Alex Cooper Auctions.

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Q & A with Stacy Nolan Jewelry

Stacy Nolan Jewelry

Stacy Nolan has the imagination of a boundless wonderer paired with a perfectionist’s detail-oriented brain. If you’ve held a piece of her jewelry, you would immediately notice the back of the jewel is just as gorgeous as the front! It has been a delight to discover her designs and see the craftsmanship–hence why I thought it would be neat to create some GIF images showing the front and back of the pieces. Her signature flower back displays that attention to detail which so many designers can’t seem to get quite right. For Stacy, something as simple as a solitaire gem-set pendant isn’t complete without a flower open-metalworked back! Are you a jewelry store owner looking for someone like Stacy to complete your jewelry inventory lineup?! You should get in touch!!

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So right now, I am finally getting to create a series of one-of-a-kind pieces I’ve been dreaming about literally for years: a collection of pendants loosely inspired by tarot cards. I make all this jewelry that is easy and wearable because I think about making jewelry for someone like me — I’m active, I’m moving, my style evolves and changes, and so, as a designer, I get to dream up new things that fit with that lifestyle, but they have to be practical. I like to be smart about my purchases, I like to be smart about what I wear, because I want it to go with all the different things that I wear — it needs to be timeless and classic. But the tarot collection is an opportunity for me to express a larger range of aesthetics. The first one in the series is the Tarot Star. I’ve made all sorts of stars and crescents and other celestial shapes for years, but now I have the chance, literally, to put the entire cosmos together in one piece. And moving onto the next piece is also literally like drawing a card from the deck: you have no idea what it is until you turn it over and take a look.

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