Mr Salvager’s treasure trove at the Chiswick car boot sale

Mr Salvager's at Chiswick Car Boot Sale - miniature bicycles

Antique miniature bicycles from Mr Salvager’s at Chiswick Car Boot Sale

Ladies and gents, I had the most enjoyable time the other week at the extraordinary Chiswick car boot sale that a friend took me to!  We arrived around 11am, when more or less all of the participating car boots had been opened and their secrets revealed to the world.  The lawn of Chiswick School was filled to the brim with cars, visitors and an array of things for sale: everything from contemporary fashion to antique furniture, jewellery, paintings, old medicine bottles, seashells… you name it!

I was very soon drawn to a stand where it looked a little something like this:

Mr Salvager's Antique Bicycle Chiswick Car Boot Sale

Such beautiful miniature bicycles at Mr Salvager’s stand at the Chiswick Car Boot Sale

My nose for antiques didn’t fail me this time either.  My camera came out when I saw these beautiful pieces and we found out that we had reached Mr Salvager’s collection of “Garden and Home Delights – If you can dream of it, together we will achieve it!  Because you deserve it!”

Deer as Garden Decorations from Mr Salvager's Chiswick Car Boot Sale

Mr Salvager’s collection at the Chiswick Car Boot Sale

Deer as Garden Decorations from Mr Salvager's Chiswick Car Boot Sale

Garden decorations in the shape of deer at Mr Salvager’s 

Karl, the owner, showed us his lovely pieces and told us that we can find him at the car boot sale as well as at other antique fairs around the country, and you can reach him on 07769 63552 if you see anything here that you just can’t live without!  I just adore the deer-couple above and would place them in my garden in a heartbeat.

I can also think of a couple of my friends who would love this spectacular lamp:

Antique lamp from Mr Salvager's at Chiswick Car Boot Sale

Antique lamp from Mr Salvager’s at Chiswick Car Boot Sale

… not to mention this beautiful brass birdcage.  Although I wouldn’t keep a bird in it, maybe just something decorative:

Antique birdcage from Mr Salvager's at Chiswick Car Boot Sale

A beautiful brass birdcage from Mr Salvager’s at Chiswick Car Boot Sale

I do have a great love for kitchy pieces and one of my favourite places to date was this wonderful café in Cape Town… hmm I think I took some photos in there so will actually write a post about it and try to get it up on Wednesday for you!

Fish plate from Mr Salvager's at Chiswick Car Boot Sale

… in fact, I can think of a friend who would love to decorate her house with these pieces!

The Chiswick car boot sale is indeed one of the most successful ones in the South East; all money raised from the entrance fees goes to the school, and parent volunteers from the school PTA run the sales.  What a clever idea indeed and I am just so impressed by the size of it all, and also by how well organised it was.  I will definitely be coming back – and apparently it is on 11 months of the year, just not in January.

Lots of love dear and I hope that this sunny Monday has been a lovely one for you so far!

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The Chelsea Antiques Fair is coming up! 18-21 September 2014

 

Chelsea Antiques Fair September 2014

Chelsea Antiques Fair September 2014

So the stunning month of September is upon us and an invitation to the Chelsea Antiques Fair has arrived!  The venue is again the beautiful Chelsea Old Town Hall, King’s Road, London SW3 5EE – you might remember our March visit from the blog post The Hearing Dogs Charity at Chelsea Antiques Fair?  Around 40 specialist dealers will be showcasing their selected pieces and we are delighted to see that affordable price tags from £50 will also feature at the fair.

Thursday 11am-8pm, Friday 11am-7pm, Saturday 11am-6pm, Sunday 11am-5pm.  Admission £6 and more information on www.penman-fairs.co.uk

Hope to see you there my lovely!

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Interview with Andrew Prince – Downton Abbey’s jewellery designer

Today’s post is a dream come true for me, as we are meeting Andrew Prince - the jewellery designer who puts the sparkle and brilliance into our favourite Downton Abbey:

Andrew Prince, Jewellery Designer, photography by Catherine

Andrew Prince – photography by Catherine

For those of you who are not yet familiar with it, Downton Abbey is a tv-series set in a (fictional) Yorkshire country house called Downton Abbey.  We are following the lives of the aristocratic family Crawley and their servants during the reign of King George V, and as you can imagine. every episode brings us the most stunning outfits, jewellery and intrigues.  In the midst of all this style and elegance is Andrew Prince, who started working his magic on the jewellery in the third series.

Downton Abbey Lady Rose wearing Andrew Prince jewellery

The beautiful Lady Rose in an Andrew Prince necklace.  The other stars also wearing some of Andrew’s creations.  Copyright: Carnival Films

Andrew, what was the first piece of jewellery that you ever designed?

The first piece I ever made was a ring for my grandmother out of wire when I was 3.  It gave her a rash and she still has the piece.  A few years later I made a necklace for my mother using the embellishments from her wedding dress.  She was not happy.

Downton Abbey Maggie Smith wearing jewellery designed by Andrew Prince

Maggie Smith wearing jewellery designed by Andrew Prince  Copyright: Carnival Films

What do you do for Downton Abbey?

I did the majority of the major pieces, especially for Maggie Smith (Lady Violet Crawley in the series); the tiaras and mainly the impact pieces.  I also do many of Lady Cora Crawley’s jewellery (played by Elizabeth McGovern) and in total I have made about 40-50 pieces for them.

Mysore Tiara by Andrew Prince for Downton Abbey

Mysore Tiara by Andrew Prince for Downton Abbey

When did you start designing for them?

Caroline McCall the costume designer contacted me to work on the third series.  I always try to ensure that the pieces are absolutely correct for the characters, as it is vital to get it right in such an important tv-series.

Pendant earrings by Andrew Prince for Downton Abbey

Pendant earrings by Andrew Prince for Downton Abbey

Have you visited the set of Downton?

Yes I have and visiting the set makes you realise just how much work is being put in.  Being there is certainly interesting and seeing the jewellery and the costumes together is always thrilling, not to mention how lovely the stars are in real life.

Wide Scroll Choker Flat by Andrew Prince for Downton Abbey

Wide Scroll Choker Flat by Andrew Prince for Downton Abbey

What piece of jewellery has been your favourite one to design?

One of the biggest pieces that I ever made and it was something that I had in mind for years!  It was made out pearls and crystals and draped down the back.  Surprisingly it sold to a lady who was just under 5 foot (150cm) but it looked magnificent on her!

Large drop back jewel necklace by Andrew Prince

Large drop back jewel necklace by Andrew Prince

People in the industry who have worked with Andrew keep praising the historic accuracy of his designs, and whenever I have a very specific question about antique jewellery my colleagues always say that I must ask Andrew, as he is like a “walking encyclopedia of antique jewellery”!

Andrew Prince Crystal Combe

A crystal encrusted comb by Andrew Prince

Also, as quoted on Andrew’s website: “He realised that beautiful jewellery didn’t require expensive stones, and that it was the elegance of the design and the quality of the workmanship that truly mattered.”  And it really is such a treat to be able to buy the most exquisite pieces of jewellery, knowing that they are all within our price range (the medium sized earrings are all under £100 and wedding tiaras tend to cost between £220-£450).

Video: Television Costume Design – Andrew Prince

If you click on the link above and go to the third video from the top, you will see a clip of Andrew talking us through some of the Downton Abbey costume designs – and I just love how passionate he is about the subject of jewellery design!

Andrew Prince crystal wedding tiara

I may have managed to get my hands on some of Andrew’s crystal tiara’s at Richard Ogden

The other day I was able to have a play around with a few of Andrew’s tiaras at Richard Ogden in Burlington Arcade, and as you can imagine I was in jewellery heaven!  Now all the tiaras, hair accessories and special pieces are all still made by Andrew himself; he meets clients individually to discuss the pieces, which then allows him to fit the jewellery perfectly.  Smaller pieces are mostly created in his two workshops, and he oversees the creation of them all to make sure that they achieve his exacting standards.

A selection of Andrew Prince's Jewellery Collection   Copyright: Sophie Mutevelian

A selection of Andrew Prince’s Jewellery Collection         Copyright: Sophie Mutevelian

Andrew’s pieces have also been worn by celebrities like Michael Jackson (a large crystal and pearl shoulder jewel) and Shirley Bassey (necklaces). For all of you Swedish readers it might be fun to know that Countess de Gunzburg Backman wore one of Andrew’s tiaras to Crown Princess Victoria’s wedding.

You can see all of Andrew Prince’s beautiful pieces on his website: Andrew Prince – fine crystal jewellery.

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Sapphire – the September birthstone

A maiden born when September leaves
Are rustling in September’s breeze,
A sapphire on her brow should bind
`Twill cure diseases of the mind.

Bailey Banks Biddle for Tiffany & Co - a late 1920s diamond and sapphire bracelet

Bailey Banks Biddle for Tiffany & Co – a late 1920s diamond and sapphire bracelet from Moira Jewels at Richard Ogden in Burlington Arcade

Oh you lucky September children, you get the beautiful Sapphire as your birthstone!  The word Sapphire itself is derived from the Greek word Sappheiros, which means blue stone.  Through history sapphires have been such treasured gemstones that they have been assigned all kinds of different properties, for example truth sincerity, constancy, dignity, loyalty, serenity, faith, purity and wisdom.  What a wonderful stone to carry around indeed!  Sapphire was the gem of Apollo, the Greek God of light and the sun, truth and prophecy, healing, plague, music, poetry and so much more – and his worshipers would wear sapphires when they visited his shrine in Delphi to seek his help. (1)

Loose Sapphire and a Sapphire Diamond Ring

Loose Sapphire and a Sapphire Diamond Ring

As we already know, sapphires and rubies are closely related, as they are both a form of the mineral corundum, and while red corundum is called a Ruby, all other forms are called Sapphires (except the pink/orange version: Padparadscha, which is very special and deserves its own blog post!).

Sapphires in all colours of the rainbow

I do wish that I had taken a better picture of this stunning selection of sapphires but at least you can see that they come in a rainbow of different colours!

Blue sapphires are the most well known ones, but sapphires do come in all other natural colours as you can see above: colourless, brown, purple, green, orange, pale pink, yellow, and are then referred to as fancy sapphires.  These various colours are caused by different chemical elements appearing in corundum, so if there for example is a presence of vanadium we will get a purple sapphire, whereas iron will bring us a pale yellow to green gemstone.

Grays Antique Market, Sapphire and Diamond Rings

Grays Antique Market, Sapphire and Diamond Rings

The most sought after colour in sapphires is a medium-deep cornflower blue (a little bit lighter than the sapphires in the photo above) but I think that it is just such a personal preference when it comes to deciding one which one is the most beautifully coloured sapphire.  I have seen so many people come into the antique jewellery shop and fall in love with a completely different colour – everything from a very pale blue to one that takes on a purple hue and resembling a Tanzanite (here is a previous blog post that will remind you what a Tanzanite looks like: You Brilliant Tanzanite).  Personally I just adore the deep blue sapphires, that create such a beautiful contrast to all the white dresses that I always wear - and the combination in turn reminds me of my beloved Finnish flag in white and blue!

Sapphires can be found in Sri Lanka, Thailand, Cambodia, Myanmar, Kasmir, Australia, Nigeria, Kenya, Tanzania, China and the US.

The Jewel Tree, Cape Town, Sapphire and Diamond Ring

A Sapphire and Diamond Ring from the Jewel Tree in Cape Town - sapphires are so beautiful when joined with diamonds in various jewellery designs!

A dear happy birthday to all you lovely September children!

Sources:

(1) Earthsky.org

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Ingrid Bergman visiting Richard Ogden

Good evening my dear and happy Friday to you!  So I have just finished reading the autobiography of Ingrid Bergman, who in my view was one of the greatest actresses to ever have granted the silver screen with her presence.  I picked up a second hand copy of her book My Story, which she wrote with Alan Burgess, and once I started reading it I just couldn’t put it down until I had read it cover to cover.

Ingrid Bergman My Story autobiography

Ingrid Bergman’s autobiography: My Story.  Top left ‘Ocean Breakers’, 1935.  Top right ‘Intermezzo’, 1939, with Ingrid and Leslie Howard

And when I then came to work the other day and mentioned the book to Robert Ogden, he told me this lovely story with her, which I just had to share with you:

This was back in the 1950s, when the world was deeply immersed in Ingrid Bergman-fever; with her movies showing all over the world and the paparazzi following her every move.  One day Richard Ogden received a phone call at his shop in the Burlington Arcade, where one of Ms Bergman’s staff asking whether Mr Ogden would be able to close the shop for an hour or so, to let Ms Bergman come and look at some jewellery.  Mr Ogden was happy to comply with the request, and to make sure that neither paparazzi nor any other visitors would enter the shop during her visit, a gentleman was placed outside the shop to guard the door.

While Ms Bergman was shown all these beautiful pieces of jewellery in the shop, an old lady who had been a customer for quite a while, approached the gentleman at post outside the door and asked whether she could go inside.  He told her that unfortunately no one was allowed in for a little while – but then he couldn’t help but add that if she peeked in through the window, could she tell him who was currently in the shop?  The old lady looked in through the window long and hard, before she turned back to him and delightedly said:

“Well yes of course I can – it is dear Mr Ogden!”

Ingrid Bergman and Humphrey Bogart in Casablanca 1942

From the book My Story by Ingrid Bergman and Alan Burgess.  Above: Ingrid and Humphrey Bogart in ‘Casablanca’, 1942

I so love this story, and it is just one of many showing how fond staff and customers were of Richard Ogden.  One of my favourite things about working in the shop is hearing the stories that our customers tell us about buying a piece jewellery in the shop 50 years ago – or how their parents bought their wedding rings there.

And as for Ms Bergman’s book, I think that I will have to write another post about it book because it is just the most enticing reading…

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The Beautiful Black Opal

Oh I am so excited about today’s post!!  Yesterday in the Richard Ogden shop I suddenly got my hands on this black opal and diamond ring, and so I thought that we could look closer at this extraordinary stone.  It is the one in the photo below to the left, and you can see how it is so beautifully surrounded by diamonds.  The ring to the right features a white opal, also surrounded by diamonds.

Black Opal and Diamond Ring

Black Opal and Diamond Ring

The world’s first black opal was found in an area of South Wales in Australia called Lightning Ridge in 1877 – we have already learnt about the history of opals in the previous blog post The enchanting landscape of the Opal.  Well, the world was overjoyed about this amazing find, as they had never seen anything like it!  In fact, opals had had a very bad reputation 50 odd years earlier, when Sir Walter Scott novel “Ann of Geierstein” associated the heroine’s unfortunate downfall with an opal.  Suddenly everyone believed that opals would bring bad luck, and so the opal trade suffered immensely for a long time – for no legitimate reason whatsoever!  This black opal was then fortunately brought to the attention of the world, and opals immediately sprung back into popularity – and Lightning Ridge remains the finest producer of black opals until this very day.

As you can see in the photo above, the body of the stone in a black opal is what gives the stone its name.  This darkness is caused by small trace elements of carbon and iron oxide, which you will not find in other opals (1).  The dark colour ranges from dark grey to pitch black, and the characteristic rainbow of colours that we have seen in “regular” opals will still be present in the stone.  Black opals are the most valuable ones because of the way the colour spectrum stands out so beautifully against this dark background.

You can also see above that the white opal to the right is cut with a cabochon (the shape of a dome) whereas the black opal has quite a flat top.  The reason for this is that the opal colour bar in the black stone is thinner than in the white one, and so it has to be cut thinner to retain its colour.

White Opal and Diamond Ring

A white opal surrounded by diamonds

And do remember to wear your opal jewellery, as we have learnt that this lovely stone revels in the humidity of the skin and may break if left unworn for too long!

One of the rings in the first photo comes from the Richard Ogden-collection and the other one from Moira Jewels – and you can viewed them both at our favourite Richard Ogden shop in the Burlington Arcade

Sources:

(1) Opals Down Under

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Sardonyx and Peridot – the August Birthstones

Wear a sardonyx or for thee,
No conjugal felicity;
The August-born without this stone,
`Tis said, must live unloved and lone.

(conjugal relates to marriage or the relationship between husband and wife and felicity means happiness)

Okay so I think it is safe to say that this is an awful birthstone poem and I do frown upon it!  I really do not know what the “unknown author” was trying to get at when he or she wrote it, or what Tiffany & Co. were thinking when decided to include it in their 1870′s pamphlet with all the other sweet birthstone poems!  I suspect that my dislike for the poem is the reason as to why I haven’t been able to locate a piece of Sardonyx jewellery for this post –  which in turn is the reason for this August birthstone-blog post being a belated one.  Fortunately August has two birthstones and I have indeed found a lovely piece of Peridot today to share with you:

Peridot and gold necklace

Peridot and gold necklace

Peridot

Above is a picture of a gold and peridot necklace featuring one out of two different birthstones for August: the Peridot.  You might remember that we have already made the acquaintance of this beautiful gemstone in a previous post: The dazzling gemstone Peridot.  Just to refresh our memories; the peridot is associated with love, truth, faithfulness and loyalty.  Furthermore it is thought to hold magical powers as well as healing properties.  How lovely to have a piece of jewellery that protects against nightmares, brings you power, influence, and a wonderful year! (1)

Peridot and gold necklace

Peridot and gold necklace

Sardonyx

Sardonyx, the other birthstone of August, is a form of onyx and features bands of reddish brown and white.  It is believed to enhance willpower, integrity, stamina and vigor in crystal healing and it is also thought to be a stone of strength and protection.  The ancient Greeks and Romans loved their sardonyx and had them engraved with images of heroes that would bring them courage and victory in battles.

The banding makes the gemstone suitable for cameos, as the dark section is often left as the background and the white part of the stone is left as the image.  Sardonyx can be found in many different locations, including the US, Russia, Brazil, India, Germany and Uruguay – with the most popular stones comig from India.

I promise to take a photo of a Sardonyx as soon as I come across one, but until then you can check out these Google searches for Sardonyx and Sardonyx Cameo to get an idea of what the stone looks like.

Happy belated birthday all your lovely August children!

Peridot and gold earrings

Peridot and gold earrings

Sources:

(1) American Gem Society

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Antique Pearl Necklace Clasps vs Centre Motifs

 

Rows of antique pearl necklaces at Richard Ogden, Burlington Arcade

Rows of antique pearl necklaces at Richard Ogden, in the Burlington Arcade

So I was working in the antique shop the other day – namely counting diamonds on a brooch – and having lost count a million or so times, I decided to take a little break and started aimlessly wandering around the shop instead.  I ended up – like so many times – by the pearl necklaces…  ahh sigh of happiness, they are just so beautiful!  The middle one in the photo above we have already familiarised ourselves with in the previous post Victorian Pearl Necklace with a Diamond Clasp, but I loved them all and started looking closer at them:

Mid-Victorian pearl necklace with a diamond brooch as a clasp, Richard Ogden, Burlington Arcade

Pearl necklace with a diamond brooch clasp

This little beauty above is another example of a pearl necklace with a diamond brooch as the clasp; in other words it also has a very clever mechanism at the back which turns it into a brooch that you can wear separately.

Pearl necklace with a diamond and sapphire centre motif

The centre motif features a beautiful sapphire surrounded by eight diamonds

… and then there was this necklace with two rows of pearls and a centre motif featuring a sapphire.

This necklace is from around the 1920′s and I am obviously learning all these ways of determining the age of the pieces, and something that is very helpful is determining what metal has been used in the design – this one is set in platinum.  Platinum gained popularity in jewellery making in the beginning of the 20th century as it was such a beautiful and strong metal.  The use of platinum in anything other than military applications was however prohibited during the second World War, as it was declared a strategic material.  After the war it gained popularity again because of its properties: its strength allowed jewellery makers to create very fine yet durable designs.

Pearl necklace with a diamond and sapphire centre motif

A closer look at this beautiful antique pearls necklace with a centre motif featuring a sapphire and eight diamonds

The difference between this necklace and the first one in the post, is that the part with the sapphire and diamonds in this necklace is not used as a clasp – it is purely there for decorative reasons.  As a result it is referred to as the centre motif, and it looks a little something like this when worn:

Pearl necklace with a diamond and sapphire centre motif

Oh go on then, I will model the necklace to show you what it looks like on!  (yep, without doubt the best part about working in an antique jewellery shop!!)  

So there we have it – the difference between a clasp and a centre motif in antique jewellery (and of course also in modern jewellery, but I haven’t seen too many of these designs around in contemporary pieces – but if you have then please feel free to share with us below!)  Have a lovely weekend my dear!

All of the necklaces above can be found at Richard Ogden in the Burlington Arcade.

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A trip to The Jolly Farmers pub in Surrey

Hello my dear, I hope you had a wonderful bank holiday weekend – even though parts of it did take place in the rain!  I had a great time and on Sunday I visited this lovely pub in the Surrey countryside – and I knew as soon as I walked in that I would just have to share it with you!

It is called the Jolly Farmers and you will find it just outside the charming town of Reigate:

Oh how I love it when they turn these beautiful old buildings into something as cosy as a pub, where you can spend a lazy afternoon in the company of your loved ones.  It also gives me the perfect excuse to write about it, since the building is ever so antique and fits the image of the blog perfectly:

The Jolly Farmers Reigate

Let’s pop inside!

You can see the timber frame inside the building in the photo above.  It really is one of my favourite features in old English houses, and you might remember that we looked at a few more of those in the blog post A tennis tournament and an English garden tea party.  When we step inside we are able to continue admiring this lovely old architecture:

The Jolly Farmers Reigate

Such a warm and welcoming atmosphere

The Jolly Farmers Reigate

The bar and deli at the Jolly Farmers

Before my visit I read about the deli on their website (you can find it here: the Jolly Farmers Deli) and I was very much looking forward to checking it out!  They have all these mouthwatering local products for sale and the best part is that so many of them can be found on the restaurant menu, so you can test drive them before stocking up on your favourites!

The Deli at the Jolly Farmers Reigate

The Deli at the Jolly Farmers Reigate

The Deli at the Jolly Farmers Reigate

The most lovely selection of jams, honey – home made and locally produced, “alongside a few of life’s essentials”

The Deli at the Jolly Farmers Reigate

very innovative displays – not to mention the sweet packaging…

The Jolly Farmers Reigate

The restaurant section with paintings on the wall that are for sale if you fall in love with any of them! 

We had a lovely lunch in the pub and I can warmly recommend the fish ‘n chips – even though it took me forever to decide as everything looked amazing.  I loved the fact that they had home-made elderflower and raspberry drinks on the menu – as well as home-made milkshakes, yum!  It is so nice to know that all this thought and effort has going into creating such an alluring menu, which then lives up to your expectations!

The walls of the restaurant section feature some fabulous paintings by a local artist, and they are all up for grabs with price tags and “sold to”-signs on them.  At the back of the restaurant there is a big terrace with a dining area, which I am sure has been very popular during the summer!

The Jolly Farmers Reigate

… no surprise there once you try the food!

I was also very pleased to see that all of their hard work has paid off in the form of various awards, like the one above.  I am so looking forward to visiting again, as there were a couple of dishes on the menu that I just can’t wait to try…

The Jolly Farmers, Reigate Road, Buckland, Surrey, RH3 7BG

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Victorian Pearl Necklace with a Diamond Clasp

“You can’t ever go wrong with pearls. Perhaps pearls are a girl’s best friend after all.” 

- Ki Hackney

Mid-Victorian pearl necklace with a diamond brooch as a clasp, Richard Ogden, Burlington Arcade

Mid-Victorian pearl necklace with a diamond brooch as a clasp at Richard Ogden

Oh dear oh dear, yesterday was such a dream-day in the antique shop!  I was able to look closer at this Mid-Victorian pearl necklaces with a diamond clasp, and some of you will recognise the photo above from Instagram yesterday.

Mid-Victorian pearl necklace with a diamond brooch as a clasp, Richard Ogden, Burlington Arcade

Mid-Victorian pearl necklace with a diamond brooch as a clasp

What I just love about Victorian jewellery is that the pieces are so often two-in-one, with the most clever little functions that you never would have expected.  With this necklace the secret is that the diamond clasp, which the ladies would wear so beautifully to the side, is detachable!  Since mass-productions hadn’t been invented yet, everything was handmade and very well thought through, and people didn’t own hundreds and hundreds of pieces of jewellery, so if a piece could double as two it would have been a very welcome addition to someone’s jewellery collection.

Mid-Victorian pearl necklace with a diamond brooch as a clasp, Richard Ogden, Burlington Arcade

A close up of the diamond brooch which also functions as the clasp here

This pearl necklace is circa 1870 and again I am just so taken by the amazing condition of it, even after 150 years!  The pearls are so beautiful and the clasp is intact.  If you look a little closer at the centre diamond in the photo above, you will see that it is an old diamond because there is a teeny tiny “hole” in the middle of the stone.  It looks like a round dot, can you see it?  This is such a typical characteristic of an old diamond which I just love, as it brings an air of history and romance.

This “dot” in the middle of the diamond is there because the bottom point of the diamond has been polished flat, instead of pointy – (you get pointy in modern diamonds).  Hundreds of years ago the diamond cutters didn’t have the same advanced technology as we do today when it came to polishing diamonds, so instead of risk losing a piece of the diamond by trying to make a pointy culet, they reverted to making them flat.  So when you look into the stone from above the flat culet at the bottom will look like a little dot in the middle of the stone!

Mid-Victorian pearl necklace with a diamond brooch as a clasp, Richard Ogden, Burlington Arcade

The design at the back of the brooch

Here is the back of the clasp, which you can see is very well designed with all diamonds in place and a complicated mechanism to detach it from the necklace.

Mid-Victorian pearl necklace with a diamond brooch as a clasp, Richard Ogden, Burlington Arcade

The clasp can be turned into a brooch thanks to the mechanics on the back

We are going to look at the difference in Clasps and Brooch Centre Motifs in the next post, because I thought that they were the same thing, but this beautiful sapphire and pearl necklace decided to prove me wrong:

Pearl necklace with a diamond and sapphire centre motif

Pearl necklace with a diamond and sapphire centre motif

 

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