Jewelry Collection Stories: Emily of @GemCircus

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We are kicking off July with an incredible jewelry collection story from Emily, also known as @GemCircus. If you’re a part of the jewelry Instagram community, you’ll easily recognize some of the jaw-dropping pieces in Emily’s personal collection. From the way she styles her necklace layers, to ring stacks, arm parties, and everything in between, we love her taste and enthusiasm for antique jewelry. I’m so excited she has agreed to share her story with us, so let’s sit back and enjoy:

My love for vintage and antique collecting started when I was a teenager, after my family moved to Vancouver, Canada, from Hong Kong in the early 1990s. I remember it was July when we arrived and I would walk to the nearby library every other day to borrow books to read (our container didn’t arrive almost a month later so all I have in my room were merely a bed, a built-in closet and my backpack). I started to notice our neighbours’ garage sales in my walks and I was amused at the things people were selling – from snow cone machines to music records, jewelry to stuff toys. That summer of looking through other people’s belongings and engaging in rapports gave me a sense of belonging and connection to the community. Ever since then I have become a frequent visitor to community flea markets, thrift shops and antique shows.

My jewelry obsession started around early twenties with vintage jewelry, in particular charms and silver filigree bracelets. I love to style them on mixed metal chains and I still love styling them now.

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I wasn’t picky and didn’t have a favourite period at that time so I usually picked up quirky little things like brooches, pins, jewel “plaques” (which I found out they were called “clasps” later) etc. Even though my collecting seemed to be random at that time, I was already drawn to jewelry that have motifs, like this brass crescent with hand and arrow and the clasped hand ring that I found in a thrift store. Looking back, I believe my love for antique sentimental jewelry originates from this pair!

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A lot of my Instagram followers already knew that I adore Georgian and Victorian sentimental and mourning jewelry, as well as portrait jewelry. This probably relates to my “innate sensitiveness” (as Carl Jung coined it) and the way I see jewelry as not merely an adornment but also a medium for expression, an art, an identity of who we are.

After I started reading books on lover’s eye, portrait miniature and mourning jewelry, I became obsessed with researching stories behind the jewelry that I collect. I realized that the brass crescent and the hand motif ring are not ‘funky little things’ as I thought in my teenage days, they actually carry specific meanings – love, new relationship and friendship – in the Victorian era. As my jewelry collection matures over time, I began to search for jewelry with motifs or meanings, like the urn, masquerade (masked lady), hand (figa, clasped hand, claddagh), heart (double-heart, flaming heart), star and crescent, buckle, swallow, snake, fern, acoutistic (“REGARD” and “DEAREST”) and Halley’s comet etc.

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I like to think that every piece of antique jewelry carries its own story of those before us, and I’m a custodian carrying on its legacy while creating my story with my collection. I love styling and always try to mix and match, experiment with different stacking and mixed metal, and do simple conversions to make every piece wearable. You can see from my Instagram photos that I’ve worn a big opal crescent brooch with another monkey brooch in the middle, stacked seven Art Deco wedding bands to make a statement ring, wrapped my wrist with antique chains and added a micromosaic brooch on top, stacked an Art Deco paste bracelet with a Hermes red enamel bangle, wore brooches on hats, and layered antique gold chains with watch chains. The fun is endless!

I shop everywhere but recently it’s largely online as there aren’t any antique jewelry shops in Hong Kong. I love the Instagram community as I’ve met so many wonderful souls (many of whom have become friends for life) around the world that share my obsession in antique jewelry. I always visit antique and jewelry shops when I travel too. It has been a tradition to bring back a piece of jewelry from each city that I visit.

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One of my obsession is Georgian masquerade jewelry: masked lady ring with ruby bonnet and rose cut diamonds from @karendeakin.antiques ; locket from @abrandtandson and the most recently acquired oval ring from @bijouxvictim

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Ring stacking is a daily essential for me: Georgian blue enamel rose cut diamond urn ring from @lenoredailey ; the moonstone on the mourning ring was a gift from my jeweler in Vancouver (he has kept it for 40 years!) and it fits perfectly on the bezel of the once empty mourning ring; flat cut garnet band from @antiqueanimaljewelry

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Mourning rings and figas: these enamel mourning rings are too big to wear so I usually wear them on gold chains as pendants. The twin coral figas were acquired from different continents yet they look so much alike. The one with emerald and diamonds was found in a UK auction and the one with seed pearl top was found in an antique show in Vancouver.

xoxoGemGossip

WANT MORE? Check out the other Jewelry Collection Stories

You can follow Emily –> @GemCircus

Source: GossipGem.com

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SHOW ME YOUR RINGS! XCII

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from top to bottom:

Colette Jewelry stacks up some new pieces that are dark yet colorful!

The Gem Hunter showing off some rings of the day, including some that are for sale

The Eden Collective creates a moody feminine vibe with cameos and black hearts

a fist full of Jacquie Aiche jewels some of my favorites in her collections

Roseark wearing Gienia Design + Barry Brinker Fine Jewelry, a winning combination

Doves Jewelry proves that all one color can have a major impact, love it

Logan Hollowell Jewelry creates stacks that are elegant, trendy and downright beautiful

Broken English Jewelry plays with Andrea Fohrman’s celestial rings

stacks and stacks of Sirciam Jewelry on the fingers and on jewelry cases

Thanks to Gossip Gem

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Weekday Wardrobe: New Favorites

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Since coming back from Vegas and NYC, my days have been long and filled with writing and running all kinds of errands. From Sunday morning brunches, to post office runs, to family dinners, my style has been changing daily and almost always depends on what I have planned. Some days I’m lucky if I get a chance to breathe fresh air outside, while other days I’ve spent more time on the road in my car than normal…but that is what I like about being self-employed and I’m excited for the summer.

Most recently, I was playing in my jewelry box and for some reason or another a lightbulb went off–I took my collection of figas and strung them on my hardwire gold collar necklace. As soon as I put the necklace on I knew that this was one of my greatest moves I’ve ever made. I’m obsessed with the look and it totally caters to my collecting mantra by displaying my pieces perfectly. I actually have 6 more figas that don’t have jumprings, so I’m off now to get them put on by my jeweler.

I’ve also been experimenting with different kinds of earrings to create a “full” look, meaning ALL the way up my ear. To achieve this look without the pain of multiple piercings, I suggest some comfortable ear cuffs. Some are more comfortable than others and it depends on the craftsmanship, so try them out–see if you’re able to wear for a full day before committing to buy.

In the first photo shown, I’m wearing a pair of ombré amethyst ear studs with jackets by Jewelmak. These are so cool and give me a pop of color, which is perfect for summertime. I kept it simple up top with 14k gold balls studs in various sizes, a Paige Novick diamond ear cuff and a vintage swirl motif ear cuff I found on Ruby Lane.

The photo below shows off my figa necklace and a carved opal necklace I recently sold. My earring look is simple to recreate; two pearl stud earrings of various sizes and a gold huggie earring from Stacy Nolan.

Weekday Wardrobe | Gem Gossip

Day One: (spent doing emails all day and typing blog posts, hence the Beavis & Butthead t-shirt)

Elongated lapis and enamel ring, from Sarah’s Vintage & Estate Jewelry in Buffalo, NY

Antique diamond & sapphire ring from Excalibur Jewelry found in Tucson this year

Pear-shaped vintage lapis ring that I can’t stop wearing because it is so comfortable and bold

Weekday Wardrobe | Gem Gossip

Day Two:

Diamond crossover pinky ring by Halleh Jewelry

“Ring One” from my Gem Gossip Jewelry line, since retired

Fringe ring in 14k yellow gold by Ashley Childs

A stack of “Ring One with diamond” from my Gem Gossip Jewelry line, since retired

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Day Three:

Oval vintage Mexican ring done in 14k yellow gold

Crescent moon ring in 14k yellow gold by Amanda Hunt Jewelry

Dendritic agate ring from Joden Jewelry in Grove City, PA

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Day Four:

Glass + 10k yellow gold ring, heirloom from my Gram

elongated diamond ring turn-of-the-century from my friend Priscilla

Diamond shaped ring set with old cut brown diamonds, from STORE 5a

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Day 5:

turquoise baby rings, worn as pinky ring and midi ring

Victorian turquoise ring from eBay

Victorian turquoise ring with engraving on entire closed-back, from Gold Hatpin

Turquoise and diamond cluster ring found at the Nashville Flea Market

xoxoGemGossip

WANT MORE? Check out my past Weekday Wardrobe posts

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One to Follow: @newtwiststore

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I’ve been noticing more and more jewelry stores across the US starting to focus solely on social media, a category of business that once was not thought of as being serious, let alone needing a full-time, specialized department for it. But now more than ever, with brick & mortar stores closing regularly, it is those stores that are developing their Instagram pages, revamping websites, setting up e-commerce shops, as well as holding down their brick & mortar stores, that are rising above the rest and doing better than ever!

NewTw!st has done just that and more! Their website has been recently redesigned, giving it a user-friendly experience with lots of dynamic photos of product, and they’ve taken on their Instagram account full-force by having the most colorful, stop-in-your-tracks photographs. NewTw!st carries some unique designer jewelry and I love how the photos capture the personality of each piece in the way that it deserves. Playful earrings spread out in an almost delicious way, ring stacks that are well thought out, jewelry groupings that are color-coded and pleasing to the eye…their expertise in merchandising reaches far beyond an in-store jewelry display.

I’m hoping to get a chance to visit NewTw!st in person–located in Eugene, Oregon up in the Pacific Northwest. Hopefully soon enough! In the meantime, you’ll be like me and totally enjoy following on Instagram

Click here to follow NewTw!st on Instagram.

xoxoGemGossip

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SHOW ME YOUR RINGS! XC

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from top to bottom:

jhadleyjewelry and her amazing one-finger wonder, the mani is everything too

lynn_ban shows how color can be powerful and so is the phrase “more is more”

jessicamccormackdiamonds gets in the spirit of Valentine’s Day with rubies

amygreggjewelry sets free form opals and bold gems into her amazing designs

roseark combining several designers–Selin Kent, Christina Magdolna Jewelry, Amy Gregg & Queen Vee

lfrankjewelry does a good triple stone and of course major cluster

diamondsinthelibrary found another twinned heart ring at the Miami Antique Show but didn’t buy it

luckandlockets has the blues in the best way possible–Georgian blues

oldgoldobsession has an amazing collection of portrait miniatures–the furthest on the right is from the Miami show

Source: GossipGem.com

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Weekday Wardrobe: 5 Ring Stacks + Necklace Layer Look

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You didn’t think I forgot about the Weekday Wardrobe posts, did you?! Well, to be honest, I almost did. Promise I’ll start being better about rounding up my weekly looks and putting them into blog posts. This month’s ring stacks and jewelry looks have been fun, mixing and matching new finds and playing around more with charms and necklaces. I’m addicted to my black velvet choker and realized how much more chic it can make any necklace look when paired with it! Above, I’m wearing mine with my Starling Jewelry emerald necklace called the Colette Pave necklace. This cutie is so simple and perfect to wear every day. I like the craftsmanship of the piece–it is made really well and the chain is Italian. Emeralds are becoming my obsession. My longer chain holds my sentimental and favorite charms–my two Fox & Bond Minis, representing our wedding day and 1st year of marriage, and my Jean Jean Vintage Cachet Charm, which I’ve developed a habit for holding onto whenever I’m nervous.

Below you’ll find five different ring stacks I’ve worn this week, let’s start with Day One!

Weekday Wardrobe | Gem Gossip

Day One:

14k gold antique thick band, favorite pinky ring, found on eBay

Onyx two-tone gold filigree ring, a Christmas present to myself last year, from Sunday & Sunday Antiques

Garnet and diamond with blue enamel “comet” ring, from Skinner Auctions

10k gold and glass ring that used to be my Gram’s wedding ring

Weekday Wardrobe | Gem Gossip

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Weekday Wardrobe: 5 Rings Stacks + Earring Look

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Ever notice, if you’re a jewelry lover, that it is the accessories that take the longest to pick out every morning?! Heck with the clothes! I could care less what I’m wearing. If I have a great ring stack going on, mixed with some flawless earrings and some Victorian bracelets–I’m good. I decided to document five days of different ring looks–my “Weekday Wardrobe” if you will. Most fashion bloggers document their outfits each day, well I’m here to document my jewelry look. If you’re wondering what I’m wearing clothing-wise in each photo…well, you should be reading a fashion blog! ūüėČ Here is my above earring look I wore all week. Most times if I have a really good earring look, I’ll wear it for at least an entire week. I don’t change my earrings as much and I don’t own nearly as many earrings as I own rings, so this was a solid look that went with all outfits.

Earring details:

Jennie Kwon whole ear cuff with diamonds and daggers

Jennie Kwon single diamond ball stud earring

PHYNE by Paige Novick double row diamond ear cuff

Two diamond stud earrings in a martini setting

GemGossip rings stacks day one

Day One:

Amanda Hunt Jewelry Two Moon ring in 14k yellow gold

Antique wide black enamel band in 14k gold from the Las Vegas Antique Jewelry Show, 2014

Fierce lion with diamond in its mouth charm converted into a charm ring

Double onyx navette style ring with pearls in the center from Fancy Flea Antiques

Gem Gossip ring stacks day 2

Day Two:

14k yellow gold turquoise feather ring from Charlie & Marcelle

14k yellow gold vintage enameled snake ring from Levy’s Fine Jewelry

Victorian real beetle brooch with gold legs/antenae

Gem Gossip rings stacks day three

Day Three:

14k rose gold double rectangular onyx ring from Tiny Diana

14k yellow gold onyx ring by Zoe Chicco

18k yellow gold double ram head ring from Burgeson Jewelers

14k yellow gold onyx signet ring with the letter M

Gem Gossip ring stacks day four

Day Four:

Elongated diamond ring from Jewelry Box of Lake Forest

Elongated diamond and pearl brooch converted into a ring

Platinum and diamond Art Deco oval filigree ring

Gem Gossip ring stack day five

Day Five:

14k rose gold garnet bow ring

14k rose gold double rectangular onyx ring from Tiny Diana

14k rose gold rose cut garnet band

14k rose gold serpent ring

Thanks to Gossip Gem

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Five Gold Ring Looks You Need Now! #LoveGold

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So many rings, so many different ways of wearing them…what is a girl to do?! Lately I’ve been taking a look at my ring stacks each day and sort of “analyzing” them. After all, I choose them every morning on a whim, almost instinctively based on what I’m feeling that very moment. Instagram has been an awesome tool for acting as a diary of sorts–a ring diary–capturing so many feelings, emotions and bits of everyday life in each photo of my daily ring choices. It is incredible to look back at photos from a year ago or even two years ago, look at my ring stack and instantly know so much more going on in the photo besides which rings I’m wearing!

What have my latest gold ring looks revealed this time around?! These five photos share some styling tips that anyone can adopt and can help steer you in the right direction when deciding what to buy next for your jewelry wardrobe! Let’s take a look:

Look One/Style Tip: Wear all the same designer at once!

Yes, mixing designers and old/new jewelry is fun and all, but have you ever worn lots of rings from the same designer?! If the designer has a distinctive aesthetic, it is emphasized even more if you wear many of their pieces at once. In this photo, I’m wearing all Communion by Joy–her bohemian, laid-back feel shines through, and all three play off one another.

Look Two/Style Tip: Stack antique rings all from the same Era!

Again, mixing is usually my go-to look, but wearing lots of rings from the same Era is an awesome look! In this photo, I am wearing all Victorian Era–with many rings having an untold history and sentimental secrets that will forever be untold. The blue enamel one, for example, is 14k gold and on the inside it is inscribed “13th Sept. 1869,” so intriguing! All these are available at Arrow & Anchor Antiques.

Look Three/Style Tip: If you’re going for a bold look, remember to balance!

If I want to make a bold statement with your rings and are trying to put a ring on almost every finger, it is all about balance! Leave at least one finger free and stack similar widths–in this photo I noticed it looked better to make the height match up as well–so I used either wide bands or two rings stacked on top of one another. Balance turned out to be more important than I thought!

Look Four/Style Tip: Put a bow on it!

I’ve had these bow rings in my collection for years and I always look them over. They are nice on their own, but I rediscovered from an old Instagram post that if you stack them with the right ring, they look like a present! A solitaire looks best paired with a bow, but in my photo, I have a small cluster as one of my pairings. Next time you see a gold bow ring, purchase it and create your own “present” on your finger!

Look Five/Style Tip: Try antique baby rings as midi-rings!

It is no surprise, I’ve been personally collecting baby rings and wearing them as midi-rings for a few years now. If you haven’t tried out the midi-ring, you must! If you think it will be uncomfortable or you will lose the ring, it does take awhile to get used to. I’ve also worn antique baby rings on my pinky, which is just as fun, but a little more safe.

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Top Ring Stacks from Gem Gossip

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Wanted to capture all my favorite ring stacks from these past few months. Picking out different rings each and every morning can sometimes be a blur–I’m glad I have an outlet to capture some of my best work before I forget what I wore! To me, wearing different rings everyday is just as sensible as wearing a different outfit everyday. Early morning ring choosing has become a creative outlet for myself, and I would have to say I base my choices on what I’m wearing, my mood and everything else is random. I never know what I will come up with! Here are some of my favorites above–some looks were chosen based on what I had planned for that specific day, like lots of love and luck tokens for a long day ahead. Others were picked based on a new ring I got and wanted to wear, adding ones from my personal collection that I felt complimented the newbies.

>> Make sure to document your best ring stacks and hashtag them #showmeyourrings so I can see!

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Ring Stack Style Guide: Gem Gossip Recent Looks #LoveGold

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With experience comes perfection! Not that my stacks are perfect, but I’ve learned a thing or two about how to create a lust-worthy ring ensemble over the years. Anything from what color manicure you have to the gemstones you mix and match have a large effect over the overall look.

Can you mix metals? YES.

Can you mix gemstones? Yes and no.

How many is too many? Never limit yourself with numbers!

There are lots of questions when it comes to stacking rings, but here are a few useful tips to act as a ring-stack style guide. The photos above serve as great teachable tools to help point out the key ideas:

Photo one: Pairing unique and striking designs is a must! Both of these rings are bold and can hold their own if worn alone, however pairing them together makes them that much more eye-catching. The Victorian turquoise ring has a bright blue color and also pairs well with the clear stones in my grandmother’s oval ring.

Photo two: Playing with colors that go together or contrast well is a key element! Make sure to not only choose your gemstones wisely, but your manicure color too. I like using reds or a black color on my nails, which act as a good neutral when wanting to focus on your ring stack. If you have crazy or wild nail decals or colors, it often takes away from the jewelry or looks too busy! Tacky colors can also cheapen your look.

Photo three: Create a color story using all the same gemstone! In my photo I created a fun stack using all wine-colored gemstones, mostly garnets and one carnelian ring. You can do this with any color, just make sure to collect many rings of a similar color. Blues, for example, can be used and different saturations of blue would make the look even more unique. Yellow gold can also be done and I love the idea of creating a stack a rings in various designs of all yellow gold, no gemstones!

Photo four: Mix old and new! Antique rings and new designer pieces now, more than ever, go hand-in-hand (no pun intended). My pinky ring is a bypass style diamond twist ring from Halleh Jewelry that can pair wonderfully with any antique diamond ring or even a Victorian cameo, like shown. And these ruby eternity bands in yellow gold are very modern, but when worn side-by-side with my grandmother’s wedding band, they look like one very wide band. Don’t be afraid to mix antique with modern, it just takes practice to get the right look!

Photo five: Try wearing a ring on every finger! Choose longer rings for the middle and ring fingers, and shorter rings on the ends. I’m wearing a coiled snake on my middle finger that was purposefully uncoiled so it unfurls up my finger, from Gem Gossip Jewelry. The ring on my ring finger is from Karen Hsiang Jewelry and beautifully elongates the finger.

This post was brought to you in collaboration with LoveGold

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