Book Review: Women Jewellery Designers

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ACC Publishing will release their newest jewelry book–the oversized and highly impressive book is titled Women Jewellery Designers by Juliet Weir-de La Rochefoucauld. My review can be found in my latest article for the Observer: These 4 Women Are the Biggest Innovators in Jewelry Design

Here’s the link:

http://observer.com/2017/08/women-jewelry-design-history-innovators-book-review/

You can order your copy here:

Thanks to Gossip Gem

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Read This Before Buying Antique Jewelry Online or Through Instagram!

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Both Lauren and I have noticed a slightly frightening upsurge in the amount of overnight “antique jewelry dealers” these past few months. I’ve nominated Lauren to give her insight and take on this, along with some important tips we should all be aware of before buying any antique piece online or via Instagram. I’ll let Lauren take it away:

Selling fine second-hand jewelry is no simple task that just anyone can pick up by attending a few estate sales. Dealers must continually strive to expand their education and invest in their business so they can offer the best and most honest experience to their customers.

For me, selling antique jewelry was something I fell into by chance in late 2005. I learned my most basic knowledge by apprenticing under a few dealers that had been in the business for decades. This oral history only took me so far. I then conquered many books, took classes, and met with as many other dealers and jewelers as I could.

This happenstance quickly turned into a full on passion; perhaps it’s even my calling if there is such a thing. Over the next nine years, I evolved my business, Ageless Heirlooms until it took form as a brick and mortar shop on the busiest street in town. The lessons are countless and the experience over these years was immeasurably valuable.

Sometimes life takes you unexpected places, and the moment that I could no longer devote 100% of my time to selling antique jewelry was when I decided to take a huge step backward and regroup in late 2014. I closed my brick and mortar shop and continued writing about jewelry, in the hopes that one day I would get back into retail and help reconnect heirlooms with their next generation keepers.

During my almost three year departure from retail, the antique jewelry business changed a lot. The antique jewelry market, like most any business, has always been prone to scammers and dishonesty. But as this niche market keeps expanding, I’ve noticed that more and more dealers pop in and out of the scene — some legitimate and others that are trying to take advantage of the trend. It saddens me to think that there are dealers out there that are either intentionally or unknowingly misguiding their consumers. It leaves a bad taste in my mouth and perpetuates the idea that buying fine second-hand jewelry is a shady practice. I assure you, it’s not.

Shopping for estate jewelry takes a certain degree of trust in the people you’re buying from, especially if you’re just learning all the ins and outs. Here are some questions you can ask yourself to help you decide if you’re buying from someone who is worth supporting.

1. Are they GIA certified or have any other accreditations?

To have your GIA certification is arguably the most important feat in the fine jewelry world. This certification shows that the dealer has put a tremendous investment in their education and are much more competent at grading gemstones than someone that doesn’t have it. If you’re buying very high-end antique jewelry, this question should be high on your priority list. What schooling has this person gone through? If they haven’t, have they had someone else that is GIA certified look over the item in question?

2. How many years have they been in business?

Ask me in my first few years of selling antique jewelry if this question was important, and I would still agree that yes, it is. I was so fortunate that so many customers took a chance on me in my early years, but I had a full backing from other partners that had many years experience under their belts. It wasn’t until I had over five years experience that I considered going out on my own. Sometimes it’s worth it to take a chance on someone, but make sure you get to know them a little bit first.

3. Are their prices consistent with other dealers?

Antique jewelry isn’t always an apples to apples comparison. But, in the broad scope, prices for similar pieces should fall within a similar range. Anything that is way off the mark, whether priced too high or too low is a red flag for me.

However, sometimes antique jewelry businesses with lots of employees will have higher prices — they need this markup to survive. This higher price is worth it at times because many of these businesses have access to rare antique jewelry that smaller dealers don’t. Pay a higher price only if that item is rare and other reputable dealers don’t have anything similar for less.

Too cheap a price could indicate that the item is a reproduction, is in poor shape, the dealer is a fly by night, or maybe you just found a bargain. Either way, it’s worth looking into more thoroughly.

4. Do they have a brick & mortar shop or a website?

Any signs that this person has invested time, money and energy into their business is a good thing. Do they have a website, an Etsy shop or a brick and mortar that they keep updated? Are they active on social media? That is a good indicator that this business is their primary source of income, and they take pride in it. People who take pride in their online businesses are less likely to jeopardize it by acting shady.

5. How is their feedback/online reviews?

If the person is selling on Etsy or eBay, it is an absolute no brainer to read as much of their feedback as possible before you purchase. This won’t necessarily be a foolproof method, but it certainly helps when you’re buying on the internet.

6. Do you see any reproductions being passed off as old?

It might be hard to know what reproductions look like from a picture, but they are out there in full force! If you have browsed some sites that openly sell reproduction jewelry like Jan’s Jewells, you’ll have some idea which items are being remade. If you catch a reproduction being passed off as old, or the description is vague using terms like “antique-style Art Deco ring”, this is a red flag. Let me know if you’re interested in more ways you can spot reproductions online because there’s a lot that can be said here!

7. Do you notice that some items aren’t dated?

I’ve seen it where some antique jewelry dealers want to sell reproductions (they are easier to find and are cheaper), but they don’t want to be upfront about it for whatever reason. If you spot jewelry on a dealer’s site that has no mention of the item’s age at all, this is a red flag. Ask them openly if the item is new or old, and hopefully, if they passed a lot of these other questions, they’ll be honest and tell you.

Do you have any other ways you vet out antique jewelry sellers? Let me know in the comments and as always, happy hunting!


This post was contributed by:

Ageless Heirlooms Lauren Thomann | I: @agelessheirlooms | W: www.agelessheirlooms.com

Thanks to Gossip Gem

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Doyle & Doyle Debuts Rare Collection of Antique Jewels

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Doyle & Doyle is thrilled to debut pieces from a spectacular cache of rare antique jewels, all acquired from a single collector. Including jewelry from ancient Rome, 17th century Spain, and 19th century France, these are the best examples of their type and many are hallmarked by well known jewelers. Keep reading for a sneak peek of the historic collection before it goes on exhibition at Doyle & Doyle in September.

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These exquisite micromosaic pieces date to the mid-19th century and are hallmarked for the Vatican Workshop of the Papal State.The Vatican’s mosaic studio was founded in the 16th century, its skilled artisans create artworks commissioned by wealthy patrons and pieces for the Pope to give as gifts. The Sistine Chapel ceiling by Michelangelo, Saint Peter’s Square designed by Bernini, and Raphael’s “The School of Athens” are among the many masterpieces you can discover at the Vatican. Originally founded in the 16th century, the skilled artisans working in the Vatican’s mosaic studio create pieces for the Pope to give as gifts and artworks commissioned by wealthy patrons. They also oversee and maintain the ten thousand square meters of colorful mosaics that adorn Saint Peter’s Basilica. This bangle and brooch are beautifully made, featuring glass tesserae so tiny that the designs look like paintings in shades of red, blue, green, and white. Perhaps a wealthy young man purchased them during his Grand Tour through Europe, or they were gifts to an important Church official. No matter their origin, they are little works of art that display the incredible skill of the Vatican’s workshop.

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The collection includes other ecclesiastical jewels in addition to the Vatican micromosaics, including a variety of gem-set and enameled crosses from many different periods. This striking dimensional crucifix cross is Spanish from the 17th century, detailed with enamel and engraving that resembles wood grain. Although probably not original, we love it worn on the black ribbon choker, especially when layered with antique gold guard chains. Although these are museum quality jewels, they’re definitely wearable!

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There are also charming examples of sentimental and devotional jewelry. The rose cut diamond encrusted heart hangs from a sweet rose gold dove. The diamonds are foil backed and you can see hints of pink, gold, and even green reflecting through the stones. The rare late 17th century Spanish reliquary pendant is a small compartment that holds a tiny bit of a saint’s blood. It’s backed by a hand painted figure of a female saint and framed by emeralds and garnets. This type of jewel was probably a private devotional artwork. Spain being an intensely Catholic country, people believed in the power of saints to affect their daily life. In additional to more traditional liturgy, 17th century Spaniards prayed to their personal saint to intervene and make their lives better.

6 doyle doyle arts and crafts turquoise pendant art nouveau enamel winged female pendant Gaston Laffitte

The other half of this incredible collection is comprised of museum quality Arts & Crafts and Art Nouveau jewelry. The Arts & Crafts Movement was a direct response to the mechanization and poor working conditions engendered by the Industrial Revolution in the mid-19th century. Adherents looked to the Middle Ages, nature, and popular folk art for inspiration, seeking to return to an idyllic time before mass production. Shying away from precious materials, Arts & Crafts jewelers favored readily available gemstones, such as garnet, amethyst, citrine, opal, and moonstone. The delicate gold pendant is British, comprised of hand wrought wirework set with bright blue turquoise and glowing moonstone.

7 doyle doyle art nouveau plique a jour enamel necklace Gaston Laffitte silver locket Lucien Coudray

By the end of the century, Art Nouveau artists took the theme of nature to the next level. Art Nouveau jewelry often incorporated idealized female forms with swirling, whiplash hair framed by sensuous flora, like this striking silver mirror locket. Dating to 1900, this lovely piece is hallmarked for French jeweler Lucien Coudray. Coudray specialized in engraving medals and won several prizes for his artistry. Another popular form was a winged female with gossamer enamel wings studded with tiny gems or pearls. This statuesque dragonfly woman was created around 1900 and bears the hallmark of noted Art Nouveau jeweler, Gaston Laffitte. The light filters through the translucent green plique-a-jour enamel wings, creating a delicate stained glass effect.

This is just a small preview of the incredible historic collection – want to see it all? Doyle & Doyle is putting on a public exhibition in September. Email [email protected] for more information and to get on the invite list!

This post was contributed by Juliet Rotenberg of Doyle & Doyle, thank you!!

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Want more?! To check out the store tour of Doyle & Doyle, click here.

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Ten Facts You Didn’t Know About Gem Gossip

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Above features every “logo” aka Banner I’ve had over the past nine years, from first inception until now. The evolution shows the progression and most recently we dropped our tagline which we’ve had since day one.

With each passing July, I sit and ponder the beginnings of my blog Gem Gossip–all that it has done and accomplished, and all the potential that lies ahead. It was nine years ago that I first started this website with the sole purpose of connecting with others that love jewelry as much as I do. I never imagined that I would be doing this full-time nine years later and creating my own path. And I have YOU to thank for all this–those who read my blog daily, follow my social media accounts, “like” my photos and send encouraging emails. Thank you. You truly don’t know what it means to me and I’m forever grateful.

To celebrate this year, I’m reminiscing like crazy and sharing with you some facts you might not have known about Gem Gossip! I thought this would be a fun and personal blog post, and I’d love to hear some interesting tidbits regarding YOU and Gem Gossip. Does a blog post stick out in your memory? How did you find or stumble upon my blog? Did I help you out in a way that I don’t know about? I’d love to know! You can email me, write it in the comments below, or share on Instagram–I’ll be posting this on there as well.

PS: There will also be a giveaway coming up, but I have to hit 160k followers on Instagram first, so stay tuned!

The Facts:

1. I started my blog as a result of moving to Tennessee–after uprooting from the only house I had ever lived in my whole life in Upstate NY to TN, I had a lot of time on my hands. I had no job, no car (I sold my car because I didn’t want to drive it 11 hours by myself lol), and knew no one in my new town. I finally decided to invest my time and energy into learning about my biggest passion I had been carrying around with me my whole life–JEWELRY!

2. I was in a long distance relationship at the time I started Gem Gossip. It was because of my ex-boyfriend who suggested I should start a blog about jewelry after I had constantly filled his inbox daily with long hyperlinks of jewelry that I thought was “really cool.” He told me he didn’t care about the jewelry and that I needed an outlet to share my passion with others who felt the same way!

3. The name “Gem Gossip” was conceived after a brainstorm session with my sisters on what to name my future jewelry blog. I knew I couldn’t have my URL be daniellemiele.com because NO ONE knows how to pronounce my last name. It had to be catchy, simple, relate to jewelry and easy to say. I was looking at my sister’s fashion magazines and saw one of the actresses from Gossip Girl on the front cover (that show was the most popular around that time). I whispered aloud, “Gossip Gem” … and then “Gem Gossip” and it all clicked!

4. One of my first emails I’ve ever received from a jewelry designer was from Carolyn Tyler, after I had featured some of her work on my brand new blog. Her email was so encouraging and the excitement that I felt from receiving positive feedback was worth more than gold to me in that moment. I will never forget that kind exchange.

5. On the flipside of that, I’ve received several negative emails over the past nine years. One that called me Southern white trash (I’m from NY, so nice try) and a few that poked fun of my features that included photos of me modeling jewelry. This is both alarming on many levels but also quite comical, in my opinion.

6. The first seven years of writing Gem Gossip were all done part-time on weekends or after work. I was a nanny for the very first year and a half when I moved to Tennessee, and then eventually worked full-time at an antique jewelry store for five years. I would sit behind a microscope Tuesday through Saturday, with a pile of jewelry in a room without windows and crank out appraisals…and then come home bursting with creative energy, not wanting to do anything else except work on my blog.

7. One of my first big writing gigs was for LoveGold–I had no idea at the time how much I would learn in such a positive way from the 2 1/2 years of working with them. I produced exactly 100 pieces of exclusive content for LoveGold and traveled thousands of miles. And I still can’t get enough of yellow gold.

8. I once had a meeting with a very prestigious celebrity stylist. After learning I lived in Nashville she asked me about my love of country music. I told her I hated country music and she kept saying, “So you don’t like Taylor Swift? Not even Taylor Swift??” and I was adamant about not liking Taylor Swift. It was then and there that I realized I could have easily changed my answer to better fit our conversation; for her to “like” me. But I didn’t. I am who I am and I’m not changing for anyone. It is a memory that still sticks with me to this day…and it was with me a few weeks ago when I had some big meetings in NYC.

9. My #JewelryRoadTrip project involves a lot of travel, appointment making and on-the-spot creativity when visiting stores and designers’ work spaces. My husband Matt usually is the photographer behind all my #JewelryRoadTrip features but there was one big trip he couldn’t make–all my Pennsylvania coverage. My mom ended up coming along with me and taking all the photos. She was SO nervous and wanted to do a good job. I think she did great and it is still such a memorable trip for both of us. It was one of the first literal road trips where we drove my Prius up from Nashville and across the entire state of Pennsylvania over the course of four days. My car surpassed the 100k mileage mark on that trip and we celebrated by eating Arby’s (my favorite road trip fast food place…wait, maybe I am white trash?? See #5).

10. One of my most proud moments was being a co-curator at the Doyle & Doyle Vault series, where the NYC-based antique jewelry store put on their version of a month-long museum exhibition. I chose the topic of Sentimental Rings and several of my personal pieces, including my grandparents’ wedding bands and my grandma’s engagement ring were a part of the exhibit. In order for her ring to get to me, my grandma had to mail me her beloved ring. We both were so nervous for this feat–I had been tracking the package every step of the way. On the day of delivery, it was pouring rain. My alerts told me it had been delivered at my doorstep, but it was nowhere to be found. I was having a full-on panic attack over this. I ran outside in the rain in search of the package. To my surprise, it was sitting on the stoop of my neighbor a few doors down from me. It wasn’t just any neighbor…it was our neighbor that we were in a fully committed “poop war” with. What could I possibly mean by this? Well his dog would go to the bathroom in our yard almost daily…so my husband would take the dog poop and put it on their porch. Dumbest thing ever, but we were totally into it at the time lol. I grabbed the package off their porch and ran back home. That day ended the “poop war” and they moved shortly afterward, so all crisis averted. (By the way, my grandma’s Italian handwriting is the reason for the incorrect delivery–insert Italian hand gesture meaning WTF).

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How to Clean Antique Jewelry: The Important Do’s & Don’ts

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For anyone that’s unfamiliar, antique jewelry is any piece of jewelry that is more than 100 years old. That’s a lot of years for dirt to collect under gemstones, metal to patina, and for grime to take away from the inherent beauty of the heirloom. It’s tempting to pick up a polishing cloth and buff away years of unwanted residue. But wait! Before you do that…

There is a right way and a wrong way to clean antique jewelry. We’ve compiled some basic do’s and don’ts you must know before you potentially ruin your investment.

*Remember, this is a general guide for fine antique jewelry. Some antique jewelry like cameos or hair jewelry require special care beyond what is listed here.

D O N ‘ T


1. Polish away patina on old rose or yellow gold jewelry

Patina is something that takes years to form. Some reproduction jewelry will actually try to fake this patina in order to make an item appear older than it is. For Georgian and Victorian jewelry, it’s important not to go overboard with polishing. You don’t want the yellow gold to be so light and shine like the day it was made.

Be careful if you’re having your rings resized by someone not familiar with antique jewelry. The tendency is to take rings to a high polish once the sizing is done. Advise them only to lightly polish the portion where the gold has been added or taken away on the bottom of the ring shank.

2. Use ultrasonic machines

There are times when it is okay to put antique jewelry into an ultrasonic machine for a very quick clean, and I mean quick. But to err on the side of caution, avoid using them altogether. If you have a platinum and diamond engagement ring from the 1920’s, an ultrasonic machine might be okay if the stones are tight and the prongs are in good shape. Most of the time though, the subtle but intense vibrations from these machines can do more harm than good.

3. Submerge jewelry for a long period

Liquid can be detrimental to some antique jewelry, especially jewelry with cameos, opals, seed pearls, or any other soft stone. For fragile jewelry, it’s best not to completely saturate the piece with liquid at all. Instead, lightly clean with a damp brush or cloth.

4. Clean with harsh chemicals like ammonia

The internet will often tell you how wonderful ammonia is for making your diamonds shine. This might work (in moderation) for new jewelry, but antique jewelry deserves a much gentler approach. Avoid harsh detergents, ammonia, and please never use household cleaners containing bleach!

D O


1. Make a gentle cleaning solution

Sometimes the best way to clean your antique jewelry is by making your own DIY cleaning solution. Most jewelry cleaners you find in the store will cost you a lot more money and may not even be as effective. They may even contain harsh chemicals.

To make your own solution, mix lukewarm water with a small amount of mild soap like Dove until it is sudsy. The key here is in the cleaning technique, not necessarily in the solution.

2. Use a soft toothbrush and lint free cloth

Once you make your solution, it’s time to clean your antique jewelry. You’ll either submerge the item for a few minutes to loosen grime, or if your item contains soft stones, you lightly dampen your toothbrush. Before you begin, make sure no stones are loose.

Then, gently brush your jewelry, paying attention to areas like underneath the stone and underneath the prongs. Use slow circular motions using only light pressure. If the piece is extremely dirty, don’t be tempted to use more pressure; instead, implement more patience. Submerge your jewelry into the solution again (if your jewelry can handle it) then gently repeat, repeat, repeat.

3. Make sure to rinse and dry thoroughly

You don’t want to give fragile jewelry a bath, but you want to be sure you remove any soap residue that might build up and defeat the whole purpose of cleaning your jewelry. Run the jewelry under lukewarm water and pat dry. For rings, take a polishing cloth and very lightly buff the shank, avoiding any area near stones or engravings. Let jewelry completely dry before putting it away.

4. Have the right expectations

Antique jewelry is never meant to look new. If this is your intention when cleaning jewelry, think again. Sure, you want to remove dirt, grime, bacteria, and all that other gross stuff. But you don’t want to take away years of character and patina. Is there a scratch in the gold? Leave it, don’t have it buffed away. Is the gold too dark for your liking? Consider a more modern replica like those from Arik Kastan instead.

How do you clean your antique jewelry? Any tips I missed? Let us know in the comments.

This post was contributed by:

Ageless Heirlooms Lauren Thomann | I: @agelessheirlooms | W: www.agelessheirlooms.com

Source: GossipGem.com

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Book Review: GEM the Definitive Visual Guide

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Earlier this year I finally did something every American needs to do at least once in their lifetime: I visited Washington DC and the Smithsonian. I could have spent the entire day, from open until close, in the National Museum of Natural History–their National Gem & Mineral Collection is one of the best, not to mention some of the most exquisite finished pieces of jewelry, each with such incredible history. When I found out about the newest book release from the Smithsonian, I knew it was going to be comprehensive and chalk-full of colorful examples of all things I love (gems and jewels). And hey, I was right. I’ve been flipping and stopping, gawking and reading all day.

First off, the breakdown. The Introduction highlights the basics, because whether you’re a student or a novice, a professional or a graduate gemologist, we all need to review the foundation. The best part about the intro is the photos–vibrant depictions of each term and visually appealing on every level. The next section brings Native Elements to life: gold, silver, platinum, copper, bronze and diamonds, mixed in with some special vignettes about important and noteworthy pieces. The largest section, speaking in terms of breadth and depth, is all about Gemstones! From Agate to Zircon and everything in between, each stone is given a description, scientific specs, and gorgeous examples featuring the particular gem in different forms (rough, faceted, carved, set in jewelry, etc). Rocks and Minerals make up the final section of the book, before the very end–a very handy directory, glossary and index.

Hopefully my photos will give you an idea as well of what this amazing book is all about! I think it is perfect for every gem lover, jewelry enthusiast, or person who loves to learn. This book needs to be in the libraries of every middle school and high school! If I happened upon this when I was in middle school, my future in the gem and jewelry industry may have started even earlier than it did. My jewelry book library is pretty extensive, but this particular title is unlike anything out there. I love it!

 

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Gem Gossip Visits Heritage Auctions in NYC

Heritage Auctions | Gem Gossip

What is so special about all of these pieces?! They were once owned by Shirley Temple! Heritage Auctions has a collection of Shirley Temple’s jewelry that will go up for auction December 5th-6th

Heritage Auctions | Gem Gossip

Outside the Heritage Auctions offices in NYC

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I loved getting to preview these jewels before they went up for auction in September’s Signature Sale

Heritage Auctions | Gem Gossip

Heritage Auctions is one of my favorites to bid for luxury items because I know they are authentic and what they offer is pretty incredible! I even fell for some of their high-end designer bags!

Heritage Auctions | Gem Gossip

This necklace is 18k white gold by Mattia Cielo and the earring are by Vhernier done in chalcedony. Both were auctioned off in the September Sale.

Heritage Auctions | Gem Gossip

Three items from Shirley Temple–this charm bracelet is exquisite, made up of platinum and diamond charms! And wow, these diamond rings!

Heritage Auctions | Gem Gossip

A closeup of the jewels once owned by Shirley Temple–the Tiffany & Co. bracelet was custom made for her, as her favorite color was orange!

Heritage Auctions | Gem Gossip

A fun and flirty lapis drop pendant with added pearls which create a tassel. And yes, I’ve said it before tassels are in! This once belonged to Shirley Temple

Heritage Auctions | Gem Gossip

Channeling Wonder Woman with these cuffs by Van Cleef & Arpels. These were gifts from Jackie Kennedy Onassis.

Heritage Auctions | Gem Gossip

Feeling these two together, both in Heritage Auctions’ September Signature Sale.

Heritage Auctions | Gem Gossip

A lapis and diamond necklace by Salvador Dali

Heritage Auctions | Gem Gossip

These cuffs sold for over $162,000! Amazing!

Heritage Auctions | Gem Gossip

These Cartier panther earrings are everything!

Heritage Auctions | Gem Gossip

Love the diversity of what Heritage Auctions offers–here are three bracelets, three very different price points and different eras!

Heritage Auctions | Gem Gossip

All my favorite rings from the September Signature Sale–that moonstone is amazing! It is by Paula Crevoshay

Heritage Auctions always has something exciting going on, whether it is a celebrity’s jewels going up at auction or a fun preview touring across the US, or sales taking place at one of their multiple locations of Dallas, NYC, San Francisco, Chicago, Florida, Houston, and Beverly Hills (also a few worldwide). That’s what I like about Heritage Auctions…their ongoing reach at finding pieces to sell is incomparable, they are the experts. The company is a collector’s best friend, as they encourage the hobby of collecting but also want curation to be an important aspect for all collectors, so selling is just as important. Heritage is here to do both of these aspects for you–to help you buy and to help you sell–and their specialized categories are numerous, so whatever you are interested in, Heritage probably has a department for you! I like to focus on jewelry, so for me Heritage is great because not only do they have their Signature Sales, three per year, and Tuesday night auctions, which happen every Tuesday night, so jewelry lovers are fully satisfied.

I visited their headquarters last January in Dallas and got to see the facility first-hand, as well as try on some amazing pieces. This time around when I visited NYC, I got to checkout their east-coast location in the city that never sleeps. Just as suspected, the jewels were incredible and if you want to get excited for an upcoming sale, their December Signature Sale will be an event not to be missed! A lot of the pieces I tried on were from yesterday’s September Signature Sale, where bidders were setting records and auction hammers were flying. A significant lot featuring a pair of matching 18k yellow gold cuffs by Van Cleef & Arpels, were gifted on a wedding day by Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis to her step sister and sold for $162,500! Being able to wear them and photograph them myself is an honor in and of itself.

Heritage Auctions continually is a dominant source for designer jewelry–like Tiffany & Co., Cartier, Blvgari, David Webb, amongst many, many others. Their December Signature Sale, slated for December 5th-6th as a two-day event, has numerous designer pieces. But what you may not realize when glancing at a Tiffany & Co. bracelet or a Blvgari suite in that particular sale is who those pieces once belonged to. Heritage Auctions is so excited to be offering the jewels of Shirley Temple in their December sale! There are several pieces, many of which I got to try on in the photos above. Although the stories behind the jewels, like where or who they are from, when did she wear them, what were her favorites, may not be known, the fact that they were once hers make them that much more special.

Take a look at December’s upcoming catalog, more jewelry will be added as it becomes available:

8.43 carat Emerald cut diamond ring set in platinum, once owned by Shirley Temple

Lapis and pearl tassel necklace, once owned by Shirley Temple

Tiffany & Co. orange enamel and turquoise bracelet, once owned by Shirley Temple

Art Deco platinum charm bracelet featuring 15 charms, once owned by Shirley Temple

Matching pair of Blvgari rings, one in ruby and one in emerald, once owned by Shirley Temple


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Heritage Auctions

445 Park Ave #3

New York, NY 10022

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Book Review: Fancy Color Diamonds – The Pricing Architecture

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Pricing fancy colored diamonds has always been sort of an art for appraisers and diamond dealers—so many factors come into play, lots of unchartered territory. Not to mention, it is so market-driven with many unknowns. To make things even more difficult, fancy colored diamonds are multi-layered themselves, with several factors which come into play when determining a value.

Fancy colored diamonds are such a specialized category of diamonds, and yes, the fancy color diamond circle is small and exclusive. Often times, this category within the jewelry industry can be seen as intimidating—mostly because it is a specialized area of expertise. Here’s where the experts come into play. People like Eden Rachminov who has dedicated several years of researching fancy colored diamonds in order to write and release a book which delves into the pricing architecture of this interesting, market-driven world of colored diamonds.

Mr. Rachminov has written two books, the first called The Fancy Color Diamond Book, which we won’t be focusing on in this blog post, but it debuted in 2010 and is the first installment of all things FCD. The second book, Fancy Color Diamonds: The Pricing Architecture, is the book I received above and am reviewing here. It features 10 years worth of research and data collection, along with insight from first-hand experience in the business to formulate a new system for valuing fancy color diamonds. “The Layer System” presented in this book is a unique approach to illustrate the many impactful commercial characteristics absent from the GIA gemological report. Each attribute is represented as a “layer” and each layer is a chapter in the book. The impressive Appendix accompanied with the book includes 15 premium charts and over 10,000 coefficient tables that decode the complex fancy color pricing structure and the premiums each characteristic imparts.

This book is ideal for anyone in the jewelry industry that wants to better understand fancy color diamonds. Whether you’re a diamond miner, an appraiser, a sales associate or collector, this book can fit your niche and help you find insight. I love the gorgeous and vibrant photos of fancy color diamonds within the book (a few shown above). My favorite quote from the book juxtaposes what most are familiar with when we think of diamonds—colorless stones. It says, “In the colorless diamond world, buyers pursue “less:” less color, fewer inclusions and little if no fluorescence, to the point where the “void” symbolizes perfection.” This is so not the case for fancies. And this book will show you what I mean!

Fancy Colored Diamonds: The Pricing Architecture is practical, straight forward and aims to educate. It is also complex and at times challenging, but the wealth of information is incredible!

To order:

book-cover

CLICK HERE TO ORDER

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Source: GossipGem.com

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Book Review – Jewellery design by Elizabeth Galton

If you have ever walked into a fashion, art or design school library, chances are that you would have come across the “Basics Series” by Ava Publishing.

If you have ever walked into a fashion, art or design school library, chances are that you would have come across the “Basics Series” by Ava Publishing. From Advertising to Typography, they have about 19 main titles and innumerable subtitles providing in-depth knowledge of all art, design, and fashion related industries. The Book “Jewellery design by Elizabeth Galton” is a part of the Fashion series (book no. 10) and is a must read for all jewellery designers, artists, managers, retailers and instructors.

The book is divided into seven main chapters which cover everything from the history of jewellery to jewellery styles and ethical practices, from research, Design development, realisation and marketing to introducing case studies of different jewellers, artists and designers from across the world. This 184-page book offers a 360 perspective of the jewellery industry making the reader want for more. Elizabeth gives an insight into the lives of jewelry designers like Stephen webster, Anne Kazuro Guinnet,Theo Fennell and Shaun Leane through expert interviews that offer real advice. Answers to questions like “What do you look for in a junior designer?” or “How do you identify a target market?” are particularly enlightening. Though this book was published in 2012, I think its valid even today. But I do hope for a newer edition soon discussing new media opportunities in design.

The first two chapters are set in a design school process based subject style with lots of input on fashion basics, terminology, fashion through ages and style identification. Discussion of the styles of various designers are thought provoking and opens up new vistas of thinking. You also get input on ethical design and fair trade policies.
The next chapter offers insight on basic design process methodology used by most designers. It talks about the need for trend research, how to create a mood board and discusses modes of research.

The fourth chapter begins with a description of a design brief and talks about how designers use them to ideate, generate forms and come up with concepts. The book talks about the importance of pencil or rough sketches, the requirement of technical drawings, how the final designs are selected and how they are converted into CADs for production. The chapter details range design, project management, recording and review of the collection in addition to CAD-CAM which I found fascinating.

Chapter five is a hodgepodge of sorts. It begins with jewelry management and details the roles of various people involved in the design, production, and marketing of jewelry. It also discusses hallmarking, sampling, pricing. Strangely, the author, here, talks about materials – gold, vermeil, sterling silver which feels very odd. Maybe a separate chapter focussing on materials would have been better.
Chapter six is all about presentation. It begins with inputs on photography, branding, look book and portfolio generation, packaging and branches on creating a web/virtual presence through PR and Social media marketing.the sequencing feels confused.

Chapeter seven details the various career aspects that a jewelry design aspirant might have and details grants available, schemes, awards and corporate projects. The book ends with a solid glossary, a fantastic list of references and a few more interviews. At the very end, we see a teaser from another Basics – fashion design series “working with ethics” which is quite thought provoking.

I am a very tough critic (my students would know!) and I hardly approve of anything but I love this book. I think that this book is for everybody (beginner or expert) who wants to be a part of jewellery industry as it provides invaluable input to self-taught artists who do not have a design background and sharpens the dull schooled minds with a dose of reality.
Where to buy:
Follow these links: Amazon.com (International) Amazon.in (India)

As this is a fantastic book resource, I didnt feel like sharing high res images of the pages of the book. Hence the dull cell phone pics. I hope that it wouldn’t deter you from seeking out the book. This book is now on my wishlist of things to buy as this particular copy is from the library 🙂

I hope you found it interesting
Cheers

[||||Thanks to:jewelsofsayuri blog|Special thanks to:jewelsofsayuri blog|Greetings to:jewelsofsayuri blog |Source: jewelsofsayuri|More at:jewelsofsayuri blog|

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Bridesmaid gifts – Flower Jewelry

Bridesmaid gifts is a relatively new concept in India . Though we do buy new clothes and very rarely jewelry trinkets for our close relatives, hardly anybody will wear it for the actual wedding as it won’t be grand enough for a wedding

Bridesmaid gifts is a relatively new concept in India . Though we do buy new clothes and very rarely jewelry trinkets for our close relatives, hardly anybody will wear it for the actual wedding as it won’t be grand enough for a wedding. But with Flower Jewelry gaining popularity, many Indian and NonresidentIndian (NRI) brides have turned to Flower jewelry as Bridesmaid gifts for their pre-wedding festivities
This US based bride wanted initially Half matha pattis as gifts for her sisters and sister-in-laws to match with their green and gold outfits for her Gaye Holud Ceremony. Slowly as we got talking, the gift grew to accommodate long necklaces and matching earrings.


The challenge here was to design pieces that were grand enough to be worn to a wedding, yet not so grand that they’ll upstage the bride. Also, there had to be a small difference between two sets of design (I presume two sets were for the bride’s own sisters and the other two for her inlaws) So, out of the four two were three strand necklaces with three big and two small flowers as the focal and the other two were two strand necklaces with two big and one small flower each as a focal. In the picture below, you can see both the two strand 3mm bead necklaces with flower focals.


The green swatch that I worked with was tricky – it was an unusual green that you usually won’t find in ribbons. So I superimposed ribbon roses of 2 shades of green to arrive at the perfect color.

As these were gifts, I went with simple yet festive packaging (check them out on my Instagram page). I used hot pink earrings cards (upcycled from unused handmade paper left behind by students) with a little gold star tape and I used pink tissue paper (used by jewelry stores to wrap silver jewelry) and printed out little green Sayuri labels. They are so pretty, aren’t they?


So what did the lovely bride get for herself as Gaye Holud Jewelry? The rich red flower set with red bud roses and gold beads. It is a set with a choker with a single rose, chest length necklace, earrings, Haathphool and matha tikka (single line matha patti) or forehead ornament.


Check out my reviews page on Facebook to see what the bride has to say.


If you have ever attended a workshop at Sayuri or bought my creations or simply are a friend who has nice things to say about me and my brand, please review Sayuri on facebook to help keep up my reputation as a 5-star brand.
So what do you think of Flower Jewelry as quirky cultural bridesmaids gifts? Even if you do not follow the customs or rituals I think that these trinkets would make fun, colorful and economical gifts for friends and family.

I hope you found it interesting
Cheers

[||||Thanks to:jewelsofsayuri blog|Special thanks to:jewelsofsayuri blog|Greetings to:jewelsofsayuri blog |Source: jewelsofsayuri|More at:jewelsofsayuri blog|

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